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AmeriCorps Member Training

Orientation Part 1 -AmeriCorps Basics

Member Orientations occur on the first day of service using Microsoft teams.

Members will have 1 week to complete an orientation quiz which goes over important parts of the presentation. You also have a homework assignment about information you need to know at your host site.  

Orientation Part 2 - AmeriCorps and Using the Education Award advanced 

Part 2 occurs within 1 month of your first day using Microsoft teams. Members will have 1 week after the presentation to complete an orientation part 2 quiz, which goes over important parts of the presentation. You also have a homework assignment. This is a questionnaire about yourself. 


Catch the next live orientations part 2 

Competent Person Training - Required for Construction members

Construction members who are serving full time or three quarter time positions are required to complete the competent person training. This training is now called Build Site Safety. 

  1. Go to 

  2. Log in using the account your created for Habitat Learns (above)

  3. Go to this link  OR 

    1. Click on "My Build Site"

    2. In the blue box click "Go to My Build Site"

    3. In the Yellow Box click "Build Safe"

  4. Pay for the class $30  and send the receipt to for reimbursement. (Or speak with Habitat staff for another way)

  5. Complete the class and email a copy of your complete course to your supervisor and  


  • Qt 1- info on date and location to TBA

    • Theme: Habitat and Affordable Housing and Volunteer Management

  • Qt 2- info on date and location to TBA

    • Theme: Transitional housing in Iowa, Conflict Management

  • Day at the Capitol Jan 31, 2024- 7-11am, Des Moines- Iowa State Capitol

    • members are welcome to join our advocacy efforts in Des Moines

  • Qt 3- info on date and location to TBA

    • Theme: Redlining, Employability skills, Tour of neighborhoods, Becoming a good board members​

  • Qt 4- info on date and location to TBA

    • Theme: Advocacy, Board Practices, and Emotional Intelligence- Farewell BBQ

  • Life After AmeriCorps Statewide Training with Volunteer Iowa- Virtual - July 20234

    • Maximizing ed award, Resume building, more​

in person

Optional Trainings


Leadership Certificate

This program will have members learn leadership skills and demonstrate them at their host sites. After completing a minimum of 10 hours training, 5 hours job shadowing, and demonstrating skills in public speaking and leadership on the service site, the member will receive this designation. All training can be completed through our quarterly AmeriCorps training. For members unable to attend our in-person quarterly training, can do the trainings virtually through our make up training session. 

Job Shadowing Program

All members are encouraged to participate in a job shadowing program. Members will learn about potential career fields and explore interests for their future. This activity is an allowable AmeriCorps activity and counts towards total training service hours. The job shadowing is not limited to Habitat for Humanity staff. This activity generally takes 3-8 hours. 

Habitat Learns- All about Habitat for Humanity

Habitat for Humanity International has created a series of trainings for new staff and volunteers. It is required for AmeriCorps members to go through this training within 1 month of starting service. This is all online and each section has quizzes to test your knowledge. We encourage members to complete this right away, so that you feel more connected with your affiliate. 

How to get started: 

  1. Go to

  2. Click on ‘Create Account’ under Habitat Affiliates and Partners

  3. Check box ‘I agree and accept to the above Terms and Conditions’

  4. Complete the Account Registration steps (you may put your own affiliate or Habitat for Humanity of Iowa)

  5. Your account will need to be approved by the affiliate system administrator (send them an email to ensure they approve your registration right away)

  6. Once approved, go back to and login

  7. At the MyHabitat homepage, click on HabitatLearns

  8. Scroll through the courses in the middle of the screen until you find "Foundations"

  9. Feel free to take any of the other classes as well. 

Optional ADRT (AmeriCorps Disaster Response Team) Training

Habitat Iowa AmeriCorps members who wish to join on traveling disaster deployments need to go through the ADRT (AmeriCorps​ Disaster Response Team) Training. We never know when there will be an ask by the governor, Volunteer Iowa, or FEMA for AmeriCorps members to response to a variety of disasters. 

How to get started: 

  • Go to CNCS Litmos Training Site <- Updated link 10/30/2020

  • Request access for an account by emailing

    • Say "I"m an AmeriCorps member that needs to complete the ADRT training"

  • Look in your email for a link to create a log in and password

  • Search for "AmeriCorps Disaster Response Team 101"

  • Complete the training modules

Optional HFHI Volunteer Safety Training

Habitat for Humanity International has a safety training available virtually. Once complete the training will generate a quiz. If you pass the quiz, a certificate will be emailed to the affiliate.  

How to get started: 

Makeup Trainings

Make Up

Due to inclement weather or other factors outside the control of the site and members, members may fall behind on hours. To address this, we have created training tracks for members to complete at their own pace. There are restrictions around these trainings so please read through the rules first. 

Steps for each training below:

  1. Get permission from your supervisor to do these trainings from home or the office

  2. Pick a training from the list below

  3. Complete the pre-reflection/ pre-test (every training has the same link)

  4. Complete the materials (listed below) and make sure to keep track of the time spent

  5. Complete the post reflection/ post-test (every training has the same link)

  6. Put these hours into OnCorps as Training Hours. 

Important Considerations: 

Do not put hours on Sundays or Holiday/Holiday vacations. Hours on Sundays and Holidays could get removed by grant administrators if they believe the hours were posted by mistake.

Members cannot spend more than 20% of their time on training. 

If you do not complete the pre or post test, the hours will be removed for the service. 

Redlining in the United States and Des Moines

This training explores the topic of redlining and how this hidden discriminatory practice affects the United States and Des Moines. – Redlining is a discriminatory practice that puts services (financial and otherwise) out of reach for residents of certain areas based on race or ethnicity.

  • Estimated Length of Training: 2.5-3 hours 


  1. Listen– A 'Forgotten History' Of How The U.S. Government Segregated America – 2017, NPR- 35 minutes

  2. Watch— Redlining in Des Moines the Movie – 2019 - 91 minutes <-- updated link as of 1/12/24

  3. Read—The Brookings Institute- America’s formerly redlined neighborhoods have changed, and so must solutions to rectify them- 2019 - 15 minutes​

Wealth Inequality

This training explores the topic of wealth inequality in the United States and how this affects the US economy and poverty. 

  • Estimated Length of Training: 1.5-2  hours 


  1. Watch – Explained-Racial Wealth Gap – Netflix – 16 minutes

  2. Watch – Explained – Why woman are paid less – Netflix – 19 minutes

  3. Read – Wealth Inequality in the United States and Wealth Inequality Global 10- 20 minutes

  4. Watch- How America Created Its Shameful Wealth Gap ; Robert Reich (7 minutes)

  5. Watch – Who pays the lowest taxes in the us? – Vox  - 6 minutes

Affordable Housing Crisis

This training explores the Affordable Housing Crisis in the United States. According to the National Low Income Housing Coalition a “record-breaking numbers of families cannot afford a decent place to call home. Nationally, there is a shortage of more than 7 million affordable homes for our nation's 11 million plus extremely low-income families. There is no state or county where a renter working full-time at minimum wage can afford a two-bedroom apartment. Seventy-five percent of all extremely low-income families are severely cost-burdened, paying more than half their income on rent.”

  • Estimated Length of Training:


  1. Watch - SOLD OUT: AFFORDABLE HOUSING AT RISK (2017)- Twin Cities PBS and the Minnesota Housing Partnership- 60 minutes

  2. Watch - POVERTY, POLITICS, AND PROFIT: THE HOUSING CRISIS (2017)- Frontline and NPR – 55 minutes

  3. Watch - Are these ideas the future of affordable housing? | ABC News

  4. Watch - Creating access to housing in America | Tyrone Poole | TEDxPortland – 17 minutes

  5. Read – The Gap: A shortage of Affordable Homes- NLIHC – March 2020 – 1 hour

  6. Explore the NLIHC website, especially the facts about our home state and Iowa. -30 minutes



  7. Watch - How Singapore Solved Housing – PolyMatter – 14 minutes

  8. Watch - How the US made affordable homes illegal - 10 minutes

  9. Watch -Why Houses Are So Expensive In The U.S- 12 minutes

  10.  Watch - How the pandemic drove rents higher and made housing inequality worse - 9 minutes

OPTIONAL COMPONENT: Read or listen to the book Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the American City by Matthew Desmond- 11 hours

  1. This book is available at many libraries as a physical book, ebook, or audiobook.

  2. There is one copy in the Altoona office, but check out your digital libraries around you. If you have a library card, you should be able to access many apps with the book. For instance, Overdrive (the app used by Des Moines metro) and Libby (used by small hometown) both have the book for digital download or audiobook.

  3. has the book, but you must sign up for a 30 day free trial.

  4. Complete the reflection component just like the other trainings

Email and Digital Communication  Etiquette in the workplace

​This training is teaching the importance of professional communication in the workplace. This training will cover creating a professional email, dos and don'ts, and more. 

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