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i am vermont strong
 
a year ago today, irene, a category 1 hurricane hit vermont. irene cost the united states more than $65 billion and killed 67 people.

here in vermont, irene was mean:

  • worst flooding since 1927
  • >500 miles of state road damage
  • >2,000 municipal road segments damage
  • 100’s bridges were damaged or even completely destroyed
  • >100,000 power outages
  • >1,000 displaced households
  • 6 deaths
  • $733+ million in damages

to see more specific numbers related to irene click here. and to get a better understanding of how many roads were damaged and the repair work, look at this list of road closures and reopenings by date or for a visual approach – look at these maps of road closures throughout vermont.

within hours, the outpouring of community support was not only visible in communities throughout the state but also on the internet, especially on facebook. if you needed help or wanted to help – facebook or sites like #vtresponse were the places to go! as days turned to months vermonters and vermont companies did their part for irene too, such as:

one year out, vermont is still repairing, rebuilding and raising funds. recovery continues. if you haven’t already, why not buy a license plate?

irene was awful as she ravaged through our state (photos) . she was costly, very costly, but she did manage to bring vermonters together in a way we hadn’t seen before.

vermonters are strong.

yes, we are vermont strong.

sources: http://www.anr.state.vt.us/anr/climatechange/irenebythenumbers.html, http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/08/27/hurricane-irene-damage-statistics-2011_n_1832342.html,
http://www.insurancejournal.com/news/east/2012/06/17/251882.htm

VCTF’s spring event is this weekend – click on image for tickets!

vermont children’s trust foundation
community creates good kids

for more than 20 years, the vermont children’s trust foundation has been supporting community based prevention programs for children in vermont. their goal is to “promote the health and well-being of vermont children and families”.

VCTF does this by supporting these types of programs:

  • After-school and out-of-school programs
  • Preschool programs
  • Literacy initiatives
  • Parenting education
  • Mentoring programs
  • Substance abuse prevention programs

VCTF has two main events each year that cleverly combine community and fundraising into meaningful events for all:

  • the polar express™ – in december take a train ride with your little ones to the north pole. hot cocoa, cookies and magic included. pajamas optional but recommended.
  • art of giving – An evening in may of great art and fine food to support VCFT as well as local vermont artists

vermonters can even donate on their taxes. how easy is that?

watch their psa – it says it all. 

so far, the vermont children’s trust foundation has given over $7 million worth of grants to over 1000 programs that have impacted thousands of families in vermont.

get your tickets today for the art of giving  - it’s this weekend!

p.s. buy a raffle ticket or 2 and this cute little vespa could be yours!

intervale center
strengthening community food systems since 1988

yes, you read that right – 1988! the intervale is way ahead of the sustainability curve. sitting on 350 acres along the winooski river, the intervale is a nationally recognized center for sustainable agriculture. it is more than a collection of farms – it is a center – promoting healthy land and water use as well as connecting people with their local food creating a community resource for burlington and beyond.

having been farmed for hundreds of years, the land is not only rich with history but also gives people today the opportunity to connect with and be engaged with it and all the land offers. today there are 11 independently-operated intervale farms. The intervale center’s relationship to the farms is as landlord and resource.

programs such as the ones below illustrate how the intervale strengthens vermont’s food system:

  • farms program - creating opportunities for new farmers
  • success on farms – providing business planning and technical assistance to farmers throughout the state of vermont 
  • intervale food hub – marketing and distributing local foods to 30 burlington-area workplaces
  • conservation nursery – growing native, locally sourced trees and shrubs for riparian restoration projects throughout vermont
  • abenaki heritage garden – growing traditional corn, beans and squashes
  • gleaning and food rescue – collecting and distributing surplus food via a subsidized food hub CSA share
  • consulting – sharing the innovative model with communities across the country and around the world

as it’s a community food system there are also plenty of ways for people to be involved:

they aren’t kidding when they call it “the one and only intervale” – it is and burlington is so lucky to have it.

if you get a chance, whether you are visiting vermont or live here – you should check it out. stop by the farmhouse, grab a map and explore.

the clothes exchange
vermont’s social enterprise dedicated to eco-friendly fashion
turning clothing into cash for community benefit

the clothes exchange collects “gently used apparel from the closets of well-dressed women” as well as donated new clothing from a variety of different stores, wholesalers, designers to create pop-up shops selling it all at bargain prices! it doesn’t end there – the proceeds then get donated to local non-profits. how great is that?

from donating clothing to buying it to donating the proceeds, the clothes exchange is an innovative social enterprise that promotes and supports recycling, our community, our planet and local non-profits.

originally started as a grass roots effort between friends swapping clothes and raising money for local non-profits, today, in it’s eleventh year, the clothes exchange offers all vermonters the opportunity to participate. you can:

the clothes exchange is such a win-win-feel-good organization that you wonder (a) why it hasn’t always existed and (b) why every state doesn’t have their own clothes exchange.

so far they have raised over $280,000 that has been donated to more than 10 organizations in chittenden county.

clean your closet for a cause and find where you can donate your clothes today!

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