“Asylum seekers are fleeing and cannot return to their home country because of fear for their own and families safety. The legalization process can take from 18 months to several years and during this time they are not eligible for state and federally-funded benefits or services.” says Sandrine Kibuey, associate director at Chittenden Community Action/CVOEO. Read more
We are committed to engaging in Vermont’s communities to help sustain and improve the quality of life for all Vermonters. VSECU embraces opportunities to make an impact in a variety of ways around the state. Here are some of the ways we’ve helped Vermonters and Vermont communities:
“Groundworks Collaborative works to meet Vermonters’ basic needs every day by providing food, shelter, and supportive services, connecting people to the resources they need to improve the conditions in their lives,” says Libby Bennett, the development director at Groundworks Collaborative. Read more
Another Way’s doors are open 7 days a week, 365 days a year providing advocacy, outreach, information, referrals, crisis intervention, access to housing resources, peer support, supported employment, educational opportunities, free meals, snacks, and access to food resources. Their free Friday night community dinner provides a well-rounded meal for up to 50 individuals and Wednesday breakfast for up to 20 individuals each week (up to 300 meals each month). These meals offer fundamental sustenance, and fill in gaps not covered by other community meals, for the many who are experiencing food scarcity in our community.
VSECU donated to Rutland Country Child Parent Center (RCPCC), an organization that is dedicated to supporting the needs of children, youth, and families. The center works in the community, offering educational experiences that enhance the success of children and families in the community.
For this event, I attended a graduation ceremony for teen moms who dedicated themselves to earning their high school diplomas from various county schools. There wasn’t a dry eye in the house, from executive director Caprice Hoover to all of us in attendance. Read More
Random Rescue, an animal rescue center located in Williamstown, VT, provides services for dog lovers everywhere! At Random Rescue, owned and rescued dogs enjoy all the comforts of family life like swimming in one of the center’s two ponds, hiking through 35 acres of wooded trails, or snoozing on a comfy chair or dog bed. The rescue center provides the same level of love to the cats they rescue but in March of 2016, they posted on Facebook and Twitter that they were getting low on dog- and cat-related supplies. Loan services specialist Chelsea Brennan noticed the post and suggested we get involved; since nearly everyone in the Operation Center owns a pet and/or loves animals, we saw it as a great opportunity to help out. Read More
*VSECU Staff Assist in Hurricane Irene Clean-Up Efforts *
Vermonters are known for their “can-do” attitude, and VSECU staff showed they could get a tough job done when they joined hundreds of their fellow Vermonters in clean-up efforts after the damage caused by Hurricane Irene’s storms and heavy rainfall. Flooding put three VSECU staff members and their families out of their homes and destroyed their personal possessions. Co-workers donated money, clothes, furniture, kitchen supplies and other items to help these flood victims get a fresh start to rebuild their lives and homes.
VSECU staff Kasey, Ashley and Christina helped co-worker Katherine, whose home was badly damaged in Waterbury, salvage kitchen items and clean up debris. Another team of VSECU staff, Christine, Helen, Robin, Kim, Debbie, Danielle, Eunyoung, Drew, Kathy and husband Scott, Chuck and wife Tina, and Lynette and husband Cal, came to the rescue of those living in the heart of the flooded area in Northfield. Several staff helped a Summer Street resident, who was just one of many living in Northfield whose homes were badly damaged after several feet of water washed into her basements and ground floors. Work involved stripping the walls to the studs, removing plaster, laths and insulation. Staff members Don and Penne helped Waterbury residents recover from the damage, while Carolyn and family assisted friends in Moretown. Alicia and husband Mike helped a friend in Worcester as well. We know many more members of our staff contributed money to Hurricane Irene assistance funds and other provided other support.
Several online resources are also available to help those in need:
Vermont Response (#VTResponse)
After Irene: How you can help Vermont – by Seven Days
VT Irene Flood Relief Fund for Vermont Businesses
VT Irene Flood Relief Fund – on Facebook
Vermont Flooding 2011 – on Facebook
The Vermont Foodbank
American Red Cross: Vermont and The New Hampshire Valley
Vermont Emergency Management
FEMA: Apply For Assistance
Vermont Economic Development Authority