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Sharing is Caring!

Supply shortages and photos of bare shelves have been all over the news and social media platforms over the last couple of weeks. Many Front Porch Forum members have taken to their neighborhood forums to share what they can with neighbors in need of this and that. See some inspiring and generous posts below!

 

“I appreciate so much all the offers to help in our community. Please try to use the Waterbury Good Neighbor Fund and our Food Shelf as central well-connected mechanisms to help the most people. Another way to help is by buying gift certificates for businesses that are likely to have to close or slow down (though recognize that just spreads out the loss of business). I’d suggest if you are in a position to tip heavily to your local and beloved businesses as appropriate, please do. They have been there for our community, and they are entering a time of massive uncertainty. Another way to help is to donate blood. Most organized blood drives will be closed for concerns of congregating too many folks. If you are healthy (and bored), and can make your way to a donation center, that will be super helpful to our medical system as this pandemic progresses. Covid patients don’t usually need blood products but we will still see the baseline cases of trauma, etc that will need blood and with drives closed we will run out quickly. Science/math-based models suggest this virus will be hitting peak numbers in VT during May/June. We have a little time to get ready. Please settle in for the marathon ahead. I’d welcome any 1000 piece plus puzzles folks have to share! :)” • Amy O. in Waterbury, Vt.

 

Been having fun making tiny bottles of hand sanitizer. For those days when you’re out and about and can’t get easily to a sink and soap. Have placed some in a basket on my front stoop. When the weather is fair-ish. Please feel free to take one.

I’m using 90% alcohol that dilutes down a bit when mixed with aloe vera gel, but still should be super strong. Hand sanitizer kills the virus but doesn’t wash it away. Soap and water are still best for that.

If you have any small bottles, ie the travel sizes, that’s the choke point in the Sue’s Sanitizer pipeline, so it would be most kindly appreciated if you drop them into the same basket.” • Sue S. in Burlington, Vt.

 

“I too would love to offer support as its needed….I am a naturopathic physician, and one thing i can offer is herbal medicine, specifically antiviral tincture which is a boost to the immune system and proactive and protective against viral infection in these trying times. Please get in touch if you would like some to be dropped to your home, if you are in need…(Until it runs out;) Also if you are elderly or at risk and you need extra support in the form of grocery runs or anything like that i can be of service.

Much love in this time of physical distancing! I too cannot wait until the time i can hug my loved ones;)” Casey E. in Middlesex, Vt.

Do you have items, talents, or ideas you are able to share? Or are you in need of something specific? Reach out to your neighbors on FPF today! We’re all in this together.


Nourishing Our Communities

Despite competitive grocery shopping and items running out, countless establishments and community members have stepped up to ensure their communities are nourished during the COVID-19 crisis. Here are some posts from FPF members that may fill your hearts and your bellies:

“When the second Gulf War began in Iraq in the Spring of 2003 and Baghdad was under siege, one of the newspapers (I think that it was the New York Times, but I might be mistaken) published an article about the very last small businesses to stay open to serve the simple Iraqis in the midst of all the chaos, pain and hardship. It was Baghdad’s small local bakeries.

I was so impressed by that, and I clipped the article and stashed it away (I’m sure I still have it somewhere) and this being long before I became a baker myself. The selflessness of the invisible men and women (bakers are mostly night workers) manning those hot ovens in the middle of all that chaos to provide nourishment to the community was more awesome to me than the violence of any airstrikes or advancing coalition armies.

Today, during these uncertain days of the COVID-19 pandemic, we remain determined to serve you, the common men and women who make up the townships of Central Vermont. With our obligation to provide nourishment and with your support of Rise Up Bakery and the other local small businesses, we are together guiding the community through this uninvited wilderness that surrounds us. This in turn will help us to be there to help other local businesses when they can again open their doors.

Our oven remains fired tonight. And we are ever grateful to you, our friends and neighbors of the local community.” • Jim H. in Calais, Vt.

“Hello Waterbury. Nicole and I hope to provide 400 16” Pizzas to the HUUSD and Williston schools. They’ll be passed out to families in need through the school lunch pickup sites. These are Take & Bake style pizzas, like in local grocery stores.

We are hoping to raise $2000 to cover the cost of cheese, etc. If you’re in a position to donate, please consider doing so.

We hope to make the pizzas available as early as 3/27. If your need is more urgent, call or email us and we’ll get you pizza sooner. #NoHungryKids #VermontStrong” • Dan R. in Waterbury, Vt.

 

“Need help with food? Here are some sources of help:

Resources complied by Hunger Free Vermont about WIC, 3SquaresVT (known nationally as SNAP), senior meals and more: https://www.hungerfreevt.org/news/coronavirus

Hinesburg Community Resource Center Food Shelf information: www.hinesburgresource.org/food-shelf.html

Champlain Valley School District free/reduced school meals (families can apply at any time): https://www.cvsdvt.org/cms/lib/VA02000902/Centricity/Domain/35/LettertoParents_FY20_F_R.pdf” • Rachel K. in Hinesburg, Vt.

 

Countless more businesses, organizations and individuals are using Front Porch Forum to unite with their neighbors and fulfill the needs of their communities. Get involved and find the latest information on your area’s take-out, delivery, grocery, and prepped meal options by joining today.


Creative School Projects at Home

Every day we are hearing more and more serious news about COVID-19. Front Porch Forum members are busy networking to help each other with child care and grocery shopping, sharing news and ideas, and creative learning projects kids can do while school is closed. Below, read about two kids who are preparing to put their academic skills to use in a creative home project.

“Hey Stowe neighbors,

We are in 4th and 2nd grade at Stowe Elementary. We can’t go to school now so we would like to work on a fun and creative outdoor project. The project we chose is to build an Adirondack lean-to like the ones the Civilian Conservation Corps built in the 1930’s. We researched online and found plans. We want to build our lean-to so we can camp out in it. In this project we will use math skills, reading skills, measuring and how to use tools.

The reason we are reaching out to you is because we would like to know is anyone has any left over building materials that we could come pick up to use for our project. We will modify the plans for the lean-to to be built with the materials we can find.

We are seeking:
roofing materials
plywood for decking
wood that could be used for walls

During this time of social separation, it is nice to have Front Porch Forum.” • 4th & 2nd Graders in Stowe, Vt.

Share your creative ideas or network with neighbors in your community on FPF today. We are all in this together!



A Pet Owner’s Best Friend

Every Front Porch Forum member knows that lost and found pet postings are common on their neighborhood forums, most often including notes of gratitude and tales of happy reunions. See this great note shared by Emily T. on the Craftsbury FPF after she spotted a beagle on the loose:

“EVERYONE — Please take advantage of Front Porch Forum if your dog runs off this winter. We are lucky to have this resource and it has become a pet owner’s best friend. It gets SO COLD this time of year and no one wants to think of a beloved pet having to spend the night away from home. Please post and let your neighbors help you find your pup! (or kitty, or rooster as the case may be).”

If you’ve lost a pet or spotted someone else’s, be sure to check your neighborhood forum and post about it!


Paying it forward

The Holiday Season is fast approaching, but on Front Porch Forum we see neighbors paying it forward year-round. See this very generous posting from a Montpelier neighbor looking to pass on the goodwill in her life:

“Hi neighbors! I’ve just been to Costco for the first time since moving to Central Vermont a couple of years ago, and am super happy with the nutritious and relatively inexpensive food I was able to purchase!

As I’ve been experiencing some stressful food, fuel, and housing insecurity this past year, I’ve been incredibly grateful to local friends and organizations who have generously helped me fill up a tank of gas so I could get to work, share some of their shelf-stable food so I wouldn’t go hungry, and more!

I’d like to pay it forward — please let me know if any or all of the following (fresh, refrigerated) would be helpful to you, and when and where I could bring it to you…” 

Get inspired to connect with your neighbors and you might find surprising ways to support one another!


A mistakenly taken lawn mower

Frequently neighbors post on Front Porch Forum offering free items. What happens when the wrong item is taken?

“I am hoping this is a misunderstanding, but I posted a listing on FPF advertising free lawn mowers to give away. Several folks contacted me and one gentleman came and picked up 2 while I was here (those mowers are NOT in question). However, 2 mowers were taken that WERE NOT available to take because they are our running mowers. I am asking that if you took them thinking they were free, contact me and return them, no questions asked.”

Shortly after this post, a neighbor responds!

“The mowers were returned and my faith in my neighbors has been confirmed!! Thank you to the person that returned them and, again, I am sorry for the confusion!!!  Thank God for good people and Front Porch Forum!!!   • Bill in Hyde Park


In giving you will receive

It’s wonderful to know we have neighbors and loved ones alike who can help us out when we need a hand. Sometimes, it’s even better to be the one offering something! A heartfelt story of thanks shared on Front Porch Forum below…

“Last month Rachel O., who is a teacher, requested Legos on our Front Porch Forum. I had a large bin of them from my grandchildren. They hadn’t played with them for years, so I thought it would be a good thing to donate them to Rachel, for her students.

Well, yesterday I received a thick envelope, in the mail. Seven students, from her 5/6th grade class wrote me thank you letters. What a heart warming surprise!

The saying goes, ” in giving, you will receive” how true that is.”  • Carmen in Burlington

If you want to see more stories like this, consider supporting FPF with your donation – become a Supporting Member.


People are awesome

One FPF member took to her forum to share just how awesome the people she’s met on Front Porch Forum are! Check it out:

“I just have to say that I have had such amazing people reach out to me since I moved here. My cousin has lived here in Morrisville for the past 30 years. Anytime I have needed help, she has referred me to this wonderful community here on Front Porch Forum. I have gotten free snow tires, a free haircut, furniture, and anonymous people helping me out. I am 61, a widow, and have disabilities. People are reaching out to me now offering me help to dig out my buried car. I am so grateful to all of you. Thank you for your generosity and caring. Hopefully some day, I can be of service somehow to someone. God bless you, and thanks to Front Porch Forum for existing.” • Gloria in Morrisville

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Trick-or-treating in rural Vermont

Vermont is one of the most rural states in the U.S. and many Vermonters live in homes that are tucked up to many miles away from the next house or main street. This can make participating in fun, community-centric celebrations, such as trick-or-treating, a real challenge.

See how this FPF member is coming up with ways to get more people involved in this year’s festivities!:

“Every year, my wife and I take our son to trick or treat around the center of Newfane. Living in a rural community, even in the center of town houses are a bit spread out and not all houses participate. Now since we live on a road that, let’s be honest, no one is going to take their kids trick or treating on, we though it would be nice to set up a table and display on the town common to give out treats.

We thought perhaps other folks who live out of town might like to participate as well.

I would love to hear other peoples thoughts on this. I think this could be a fun night, and bring more people out to celebrate.” • Jeffrey in Newfane

Have you used Front Porch Forum to get more involved in your community? If so, consider becoming a Supporting Member – make a donation today!