Join CivicSpark’s 2019-20 Cohort!

We are still accepting applications for Fellows! CivicSpark Fellows have the opportunity to implement targeted projects in support of local government agencies, and develop technical skills while creating a meaningful and lasting impact in California’s communities. The priority deadline to apply is June 1st. Applications will continue to be accepted on a rolling basis pending project availability.

2018 - 2019 CivicSpark Fellows Orientation

Why CivicSpark?

CivicSpark provides Fellows significant professional development training, network development with regional and statewide contacts in the sustainability field, valuable experience in the sustainability and water fields and the local government sector, and a connection to a network of hundreds of CivicSpark alumni and hundreds of thousands of AmeriCorps Alums.

Additionally, Fellows receive the following benefits from their 11-month terms of service:

$20,000 Living Allowance (before taxes) spread evenly over 11 months
$6,095 Segal Education Award upon completion of program
SNAP (Food Stamps) – for those eligible
Forbearance on existing qualifying student loans and payment of interest accrued during service
Health insurance
Childcare assistance to qualifying fellows, paid to an eligible provider of your choice

Help Us Spread the Word!

Please share the CivicSpark opportunity with anyone potentially interested in becoming a Fellow. They can learn more via our website in the link below.

Project Spotlight

Watershed Education in Grass Valley

Cameron Townsend is working in the Watershed Resources Division at Nevada Irrigation District (NID) in Grass Valley. His service projects focus on organizing, assessing, and aiding implementation of fire fuels reduction; compiling field data for a meadow restoration project; developing a curriculum and events for a watershed education program; and assisting in a greenhouse gas inventory for a water treatment facility. He has recently helped give an informational tour of a fire fuel reduction project, where the public was invited to learn about watershed health and function, wildfire risk and ecology, and climate change. In the coming months, he plans to have implemented a watershed education summer camp at one of NID’s campgrounds, worked on the next steps toward implementation of the meadow restoration project, and hopefully build the framework for NID’s meadow restoration plan.

Fellow Spotlights

Question of the Month : ” What are some lessons you’ve learned from working on your Volunteer Engagement Project? “

Matt Kubasak | Sacramento Region

” I learned the extent to which people genuinely want to help out. I anticipated a lot of foot-dragging when I was coordinating volunteers, and was ready to put a lot of time into making sure people were enthusiastically getting the job done, but it turns out that the people out in the real world are as generally well-meaning as my friends in CivicSpark. The ones that sign up to volunteer at science fairs, at least. “

Matt Kubasak is a San Diego native happy to be working in Sacramento with the Delta Stewardship Council. He volunteered with a soccer league when he was younger, and has wanted to keep volunteering ever since. Matt recently graduated from Notre Dame with majors in applied math and political science, and is excited to apply his specialties to worthwhile ends helping people respond effectively to climate-related threats in the Delta.

Suzanne Hartman | Bay Area Region

” I have learned that when you’re working on a project with multiple partners, it is good to create a timeline of what you all would like to accomplish in the coming months and assign accordingly. Also, to have constant check-ins to make sure that everyone is up to date on what is completed and what needs to be completed; communication is very important . “

Suzanne Hartman is from Stockton, CA. She joined CivicSpark because she wants to contribute to making a positive impact in the community and the environment. She hopes to gain more experience and a better understanding of sustainable planning for local communities.

CivicSpark Great Story

Beautiful Nowhere Place
Ayelet Zamek, 2018-19 Climate Fellow – Central Coast Region
” We take a moment to admire the blooms from a distance, or maybe simply to allow time for our eyes to adjust to the brightness, as if we stepped out of a dark room. Once our eyes have ceased watering, we step over the boundary pipe and find ourselves in more beautiful a garden than could be consciously planted… “

Upcoming Opportunities and Events

Funding Navigation for California Communities

The Local Government Commission is excited to announce our new Stormwater Project Resources Section! Make sure to visit our redesigned homepage for the latest in funding opportunities for local governments in the areas of Active Transportation, Drinking Water, Local Street Repair, Parks, Public Transit & Shared Mobility, Stormwater, and Wastewater Management.

Want help finding and accessing funding to implement your project?
Let us assist you! Click here to submit a brief request form.

Technical assistance support is limited and provided on a first-come, first-served basis, so don’t wait to apply!


The Business of Local Energy Symposium
June 20 – 21, 2019 | Orange County, CA

Registration now open! Join us for the best community choice networking of 2019!

Join Community Choice Aggregation (CCA) experts and leaders from across the state for a day-long Symposium on June 21st about accelerating California’s local energy resource development by establishing CCAs and sharing best practices in order to create more benefits for California’s local communities. There will also be a pre-Symposium workshop “Managing Risk in a Dynamic Environment” on June 20th from 1:00 PM – 5:00 PM ($35).


10th Annual Statewide Energy Efficiency Forum
June 26 – 27, 2019 | Long Beach, CA

The Local Government Commission, in partnership with the Statewide Energy Efficiency Collaborative, is hosting the 10th Annual Statewide Energy Efficiency Forum (SEEC Forum). The SEEC Forum aims to provide learning, sharing, and networking opportunities to help local governments save energy, reduce greenhouse gas emissions in their communities, and catalyze climate action. The forum will feature engaging sessions, expert plenaries and keynotes, and new innovative activities to help energy leaders and practitioners connect to learn about innovative projects and strategies, share best practices, and troubleshoot challenges.

The SEEC Forum is offered at no-cost to California local government staff and officials. Click here to learn more.


CivicSpark Logo

CivicSpark is a Governor’s Initiative AmeriCorps program implemented by the Local Government Commission in partnership with the Governor’s Office of Planning and Research. Each year, 90 Fellows are placed across California in regional hubs to implement targeted projects that build capacity for local government agencies to better address community resilience issues such as climate change, water resource management, and access to opportunities.

Learn more about CivicSpark at www.civicspark.lgc.org.


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