Logo

Category Archives: Community Building

How to use FPF to help your neighbors

Did you know you can use your local neighborhood FPF to help those in need? Organize your neighbors to volunteer in a local soup kitchen or host a meal for those less fortunate. During this holiday season, you may be pleasantly surprised how giving your community can be!

STEPS:

  1. Post to organize several neighbors to volunteer at your local soup kitchen or community meal.
  2. Post an announcement two weeks prior to the event to invite neighbors in need AND to encourage volunteer help.
  3. Post a reminder message three days before.
  4. Choose the “Event” category so that your posting also shows up in the FPF Community Calendar.
  5. Check the share box to include neighboring towns.

Front Porch Forum examples:

“Pies for People is back! We are seeking volunteers to help roll out pie crust for holiday pies for our neighbors. These pies go to the Food Pantry, free community dinners, schools and nursing homes. A home made pumpkin pie is something everyone should be able to experience for Thanksgiving! If you’d like to help, please sign up” • Allison in Craftsbury

“Every year, in Brattleboro, for 40 years, there has been a community dinner where people can gather for a free meal. This year continues a great tradition. There is an opening for someone (can be more than one) to play some music to contribute to the meal’s general environment.”  • Breeze in Williamsville

“Nobody in town should go hungry, especially at the holidays. To make this happen we really need your help! We are collecting food to feed local families in need. Please help us by bringing in a grocery gift card or item listed. Your generosity is affording every local family the opportunity to have a warm and hearty Thanksgiving together.”  • Marianna in Stowe

 

 


Staying locally connected while traveling

Planning to be out of the state over the holidays or even for the winter? FPF will continue to keep you connected while you’re gone!


“After being gone for more than 4 months, Front Porch Forum has kept me in touch. Found me a ride home from the train station in Waterbury, found me a car, mine died the day I left , and found me a possible roommate for the winter.. So great to have a local place to help all of us. AND I DID IT ALL FROM PORTUGAL AND SCOTLAND !!”
 • Rich in Fayston

 


Offers of hot meals, hot showers and warmth

During last week’s wind storm that affected so many Vermonters, FPF was flooded with posts offering help to neighbors. And our town officials used Front Porch Forum to communicate needs, assistance and thanks….

“When you see our road crew and firefighters, give them a hand for their hard work throughout last nights storm. These folks were out in that crazy weather, clearing trees and trying to keep our roads open! Thanks also to all the good neighbors who have been offering to help each other out.”   • Sally, Lincoln Town Clerk

“Are you still without power and running water from the recent storm? The Stowe Arena will be open from 8am-9pm for community members who would like a hot shower.”
• Emily, 
Program Director, Stowe Parks & Recreation

This evening Robinson School will have a hot meal for those who are still without power. Chili, soup, sandwiches, water fill-up and community comfort will be available in the cafeteria 5:30-6:30 this evening.” • Edorah, Principal, Robinson Elementary School, Starksboro

“If anyone without power is in need or want of a warm, lit space to hang out for a bit or get some work done, or collect some water, or whatever, the Jericho UMC church next to the town hall will be open from 1-9 p.m. Wednesday and Thursday.” • John, United Methodist Church


Kids, large and small, love Halloween!

One of Vermont’s high school principals took to posting on Front Porch Forum to remind us to support our neighborhood teens on Halloween.

“Waves of trick-or-treaters are welcomed in our neighborhoods; it’s just a special few days in this corner of the world. Many parents have (quickly?) gone from pulling children in wagons (and eating “their” candy) to wondering if their kids will “go out” this year for the last time (again!). I found this article to be brilliant and wanted to share it…I am aware that our town has always been kind to the hordes of young ghosts, goblins, zombies and ninjas while still also welcoming to the 1/2 costumed late adolescents who (perhaps like their parents) just don’t want to let go of a fun and carefree tradition.

As Principal I often find myself thankful for the empathy our community shows toward our teens, I know my students feel supported by the community. This is very important because let’s face it, it can be an intense time for our high school age youth; they may be writing their college essay, playing in a playoff game, and volunteering to raise awareness about domestic violence all while planning (or more likely not planning) their Halloween costumes.

Thanks for supporting these amazing young people — and let’s remember to watch out for the kids on the roads (be they large or small).

Happy Halloween!” • Patrick, Principal, South Burlington High School


Organizing for community dinners

Front Porch Forum members can reach out to their neighbors to start or continue traditions that connect us in person.

“Is there anyone interested in continuing the tradition of our town’s Community Christmas Dinner? With a loyal group of volunteers, it’s been happening for more then 25+ years…. If interested contact us and if you know anyone who is not on FPF please let them know about this, we’d really appreciate it.”  • Cathy in Waterbury

“We are pleased to invite you to the first Saplings’ Community Dinner….Bring your families and friends, all are welcome. Looking forward to seeing you!”  • Melissa in Craftsbury

 

Connecting with our neighbors… it’s what Front Porch Forum is all about!


Thanks for helpful, kind neighbors

Front Porch Forum members can often be counted on to help their neighbors in need…..

“Thank you to our neighborhood for helping mow our lawn while we are at the hospital all day with our son. There is a lot in the news about the divisions in this country and a tiny fraction of individuals with hatred in their hearts. But overwhelmingly, we are living in a community of people who are good, and helpful and kind. This is just one example. Thank you to my dear neighbors and community” • Matt in Williston

Generosity from others helps confirm the value of nurturing community relationships. Reach out to your neighbors with FPF.


Finding civil discourse, compassion, and encouragement

Many Front Porch Forum members have expressed their gratitude for having this communication tool to connect with neighbors.

“As I have traveled from our beautiful state, I have realized what a jewel our FPF is whenever we need or want to connect with neighbors. Other people just don’t have this. So many times that FPF has been there when we needed it: There was the time I needed equipment following my mother’s hip operation. My husband and I were able to round out our furnishings after we moved in. I was able to get people engaged in Yoga for the local Food Shelf. I have watched people reunited with beloved pets and have been warned of issues that might impact us. Shared plants and recipes and notification of events nearby…

There has been the occasional drama, but it also has been a place of civil discourse, compassion, and encouragement. I recommend becoming a sustaining member – it is easy and then you won’t forget to give if you are busy during the FPF appeal.
Your neighbor in this great state of ours” • Lynn in St. George


Front Porch Forum coming to Cambridge, NY!

Thanks to a local group of supporters, Front Porch Forum is excited to bring our online service that helps neighbors connect and build community to the people of Cambridge, White Creek and Jackson, NY! Learn more about this initiative at an informational meeting tonight at 7PM at Battenkill Books.

Founded in Burlington, VT in 2006, FPF hosts local online forums in all 250 towns in Vermont, plus Argyle, NY. People use the site to find lost dogs, recommend sources of cord wood, organize help for a neighbor who is ill, find a babysitter, discuss local issues, report a break-in, and much more.

More than 140,000 households in FPF’s coverage area use the service to tune into local conversations and news and now the residents of the Cambridge, New York region can as well!


Planning a neighborhood block party?

Turn to your neighbors on Front Porch Forum, like this member did, to get it done!

“Is there any interest in having a casual neighborhood social / block party some time this fall to get to know each other? Willing to do most of the legwork organizing if others are interested. I put together a survey, and hope you’ll take a minute to fill it out and let me know! Feel free to send this to others that may not be on FPF. If there is digital interest, I will post signs around the hood in the near future. Take care!” • Sara in South Burlington

Get to know your neighbors in person and organize your own neighborhood event.