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Washington Conservation Corps

Department of Ecology

: (360) 407-6000

State Website: www.ecy.wa.gov

Local Link: www.ecy.wa.gov/wcc

Participation: 350 participants served in the the Washington Conservation Corps between July 1, 2012 and June 30, 2013.

Who is Served: The program enrolls unemployed young adults between 18 and 25 years of age. (Age restrictions are based on legislative mandate; limited exceptions may be made for veterans, leadership positions, and participants with a sensory or mental disability.)

Program Description: Ecology’s Washington Conservation Corps improves our environment while providing career enhancement opportunities for young adults and military veterans. As an AmeriCorps program, WCC creates future leaders through community involvement and mentorship. WCC has over 350 members and experienced staff statewide who plant 1 million trees annually, build trails and respond to local and national disasters.

Other Program Characteristics: WCC participants serve on crews that consist of five members and a crew supervisor. In addition, 25 participants serve as Individual Placements within environmental agencies or nonprofit organizations. The Washington Conservation Corps is an AmeriCorps Program that offers Education Awards equivalent to the current value of the Pell Grant (amount determined annually, 2017-2018 amount is $5,815) to Corps members who serve one year. The Department of Ecology coordinates WCC projects with federal, state, local, and nonprofit agencies.

New Partnership with Veterans: In the fall of 2011, the Washington Conservation Corps formed a partnership with the Washington Department of Veterans Affairs to create new opportunities for military veterans.  As WCC members, they help restore and protect Washington’s environment, provide environmental education and volunteer opportunities for thousands of residents of all ages, and assist citizens in Washington and across the nation during floods, fires, hurricanes and other natural disasters. Their transition from military to AmeriCorps service will enable veterans to continue serving their communities and country while gaining new skills in the environmental field.

Program History: WCC was established in 1983.

Planning Cycle: Every year.

Outcome Measures: WCC measures its success by the impact of the services it provides and by the project members' accomplishments. Specific performance measures include:

  • Miles of trail created or improved.
  • Acres of public lands cleaned or improved.
  • Number of Veterans engaged in service opportunities.

Funding and Regional Division: WCC is a statewide program.

State Funding: $1,125,000 (annual), Department of Ecology

Federal Funding: $1,823,920 (AmeriCorps grant, pass-through dollars through Office of Financial Management)

Statutory Authority: RCW 43.220


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