The annual AmeriCorps Summer Program is a short-term, intensive ten-week community service program to directly support anti-poverty efforts on the Plateau, focusing on alleviating child hunger and reducing summer learning loss. 

Since 2016, Sewanee: the University of the South has hosted the South Cumberland Summer Meal Program to provide meals to children and youth ages 2-18 at community partner sites in Franklin, Marion, and Grundy counties. This large-volume, regional distribution of no-cost, healthy meals is made possible through a partnership between Sewanee Dining and the South Cumberland Plateau (SCP) VISTA and AmeriCorps programs. This partnership helps to meet food availability needs during the summer months of June and July – a crucial time frame for food insecurity on the South Cumberland Plateau, when the ‘safety net’ of K-12 school-year meals are not in place and child hunger rates typically rise. SCP AmeriCorps members are essential to successfully implementing the summer meal program.

When not distributing meals, AmeriCorps members serve various functions with the many nonprofits, social services, and governmental agencies across the Plateau region. In collaboration with AmeriCorps and our community partners, address a variety of needs: designing and leading youth and young adult educational activities, creating outreach materials for nonprofits, assisting with research on topics related to community development and poverty alleviation, engaging in community education events, resource fairs, community gardening, affordable housing repair and construction, and more. 

SUMMER Meal Program Highlights

Becoming a Member

The summer program runs from May 20th to July 28th, 2024. It begins with a two-week orientation with a virtual option. Meal distribution runs from June 3rd to July 28th. This full-time summer volunteer opportunity pays a stipend totaling $3,000. Members who complete the entire program also receive an education award of $1,565.08, which can be used to pay current, past, or future student tuition or qualified loans. Anyone age 17 & up is welcome to apply, including high schoolers, college students, and community members.To start your application, fill out this interest form linked below.

Partner with us for summer!