The Neighborhood Design Center: Capacity Builder



Start Date


End Date


Times of day

Weekday Mornings

Time Commitment

Full time (30+ hrs/wk)


Long-Term (6 months-1 year)


3503 North Charles Street
United States


The following position is a one year (November 2017-November 2018) AmeriCorps VISTA position at the Neighborhood Design Center and sponsored by Strong City Baltimore. The mission of the Neighborhood Design Center is to provide access to pro bono design services in underserved communities in Baltimore City and Prince George’s County, MD. In collaboration with neighborhood groups, local government agencies and fellow nonprofits, they support locally driven initiatives for neighborhoods pursuing improved quality of life within their built environments.

Empower communities by bolstering the skills of community leaders, building partnerships, and implementing community-led projects! The goal of this proposed project is to develop critical components for successful capacity building for community led development projects. 

The VISTA will:

  1. Document and codify the Place Based Capacity Building projects 
  2. Analyze the community capacity needed to create successful grassroots development/community spaces in Baltimore and beyond  
  3. Develop a set of tools and guidelines for Neighborhood Design Center staff and designers, (as well as other public interest design practitioners) to reference in engaging with community-led development projects.    

Community organizations, local governments, and non-profits frequently wish to initiate architectural, landscape architecture, or other design support for community-led development projects that ultimately reduce poverty in their communities. Foundations and other funders are more likely to support a project when it has a clear and developed plan. The Neighborhood Design Center provides pro bono planning, capacity building, conceptual design, and community engagement services for these (yet) unfunded projects. The services we provide enable client organizations to better galvanize support from community and political and funding agencies, resulting in increased investment in disinvested communities. 

AmeriCorps VISTA (Volunteers in Service to America) is not a job per se, but a full time national service opportunity. Benefits include: living allowance, relocation and child care assistance if eligible, health allowance, monthly travel reimbursement, choice of an education award or cash stipend, and non-competitive eligibility for federal employment upon completion. Preferred candidates will be at least 18 years of age, demonstrate relevant experience for the position, and exhibit professionalism, commitment to service, and leadership potential.

Strong City’s mission is to build and strengthen neighborhoods and people. For more than four decades, Strong City has secured the resources of VISTA members to build sustainable change and fight poverty in our neighborhoods. Strong City-sponsored AmeriCorps VISTA members receive a solid foundation of skills they can use as a springboard for careers in government, nonprofits, education, and much more.

For more information, please contact Azure Grimes, VISTA Leader, at or (410) 387-0088. 


Stipend Provided

Training Provided

How To Apply

To apply please visit Strong City Baltimore's Website:

Application Deadline: October 16, 2017

Pre-Service Orientation:  November 14-17, 2017 (non-negotiable)

Start Date: November 27, 2017 (non-negotiable)