MAPS WORKS: CONNECTING COMMUNITY WITH MEDIA ARTS
Members of AmeriCorps VISTA (Volunteers in Service to America ), as stated by the Corporation for National & Community Service, “bring their passion and perseverance where the need is greatest: to organizations that help eradicate poverty. The most pressing challenges we face as a nation require the most courageous and creative people to address them. An AmeriCorps VISTA member serves as a catalyst for change, living and working alongside community members to advance local solutions.”
Headquartered in Ravalli County, in rural western Montana, the MAPS Media Institute became a proud AmeriCorps VISTA host site in 2016. The 2014 Census lists our county as one of the top 10 Montana counties affected by poverty. MAPS believes that quality education is key to alleviating and eliminating poverty - period. We know that investing in our community’s youth is essential and critical to the success of education. Since 2004, MAPS has provided quality free-of-charge media arts programming and economic opportunities for Montana’s youth. We passionately believe in the creative capacity of all students and are committed to providing state-of-the-art equipment, professional instruction, and compassionate leadership.
MAPS VISTA project, MAPS Works: Connecting Community Through Media Arts incorporates all of MAPS media arts programming and expands upon it with intentional community service participation. MAPS students apply their creative technical skills by assisting with media productions for local nonprofits: 2-4 minute videos, compelling public service announcements, photographic stills and the stories of the organization, thank you videos, etc. The MAPS Works student team also assists nonprofits with social networking strategy and advice.
The MAPS Works program assists in poverty reduction in two ways: providing marketable 21st century/STEAM skills to youth, while promoting the missions of non-profit organizations . This type of collaboration helps our community THRIVE.