The days are getting longer, crocuses and bluets are springing up from the ground, and birds are returning to the Northeast from their winter vacations: signs of spring! Neighbors are sharing their observations. Have you seen any signs of spring? These FPF members have:
“I’m so grateful to be a part of this community in this time. Thanks to you all. Also! I really love spring, and I miss the spring arrivals board at Sterling College. So…I have a poster board at the Genny up for us all to document our observations of spring (bring your own pen). I also created a google doc that I think should be accessible to all to add observations.
Let’s not let the craziness of this spring allow us to miss this gorgeous and amazing time of year!” • Hannah in Craftsbury, Vt.
Late-spring snowfall, inspired ways to keep the kids busy, crocuses, and random acts of beauty and neighborly kindness.
Home schooling, long walks.
A creative home desk made from–wait, is that an ironing board?
That’s what Middlesex looks like this spring as we all hunker down to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. Check out these creative shots of our community taken by your Middlesex neighbors, at:
Enjoy!” • Susan in Middlesex, Vt.
Share your spring sightings and observations on your Front Porch Forum today!
Get tips on how best to make use of Front Porch Forum during these unprecedented times we’re in due to COVID-19. Visit frontporchforum.com/fpf-in-times-of-crisis for regular updates.
Coronavirus is an unprecedented public health crisis. Connection among neighbors is a critical asset during crises and Front Porch Forum is here to serve. Neighbors helping neighbors, people asking questions, government agencies and nonprofits posting updates, and more. This aligns with our community-building work that has been our mission since launching in 2006.
FPF is 100% committed to our role as essential civic infrastructure for Vermont communities, and we will do whatever it takes to help Vermonters and our neighbors in upstate New York stay connected and be resilient in this time of crisis.
Please post to your local FPF and respond to others. Recent examples for inspiration:
– Setting up shopping services for neighbors who are quarantined
“My 93 year old grandmother is feeling justifiably nervous about going out and about to get groceries right now. Unfortunately, she lives in Maryland and I live in Lincoln, so I’m limited in how I can help her … but maybe I can help you! If you live in Lincoln and the thought of going out to grab groceries is making you feel vulnerable and nervous please email me or send me a text. You can give me a grocery list and I’ll head to town and pick things up for you.” – Suzanna in Lincoln
“Let’s start a list of those who might be willing to pick up/drop off groceries & prescriptions and those who might need the help. Perhaps the best place to start is to ask if there are a couple other people in our community who would be willing to brainstorm how we could set something up.” – Cassandra in Northfield
“What do you think about starting a Five Sisters shopping squad to go on grocery/drug-store runs for neighbours who are immunocompromised, older or self-quarantined?” – Zoe in Burlington
– Addressing food insecurity with school closures
“I am aware that food-insecure households in our community will be critically affected by school closures. I also believe that as a community we have the ability to face this challenge together. Perhaps we could cooperate with school officials to deliver meals prepared in the school kitchens as the necessary infrastructure & financial support for food preparation are already in place there. I’d like to reach out to school officials to offer help with delivering meals to students that need them when schools are closed.” – Forest in Shelburne
– Offering to pick up prescriptions for those who can’t
“I am still going into my office for the time being. I work above Walgreens on Main St. If anyone in Cabot needs to get prescriptions filled but doesn’t wish to venture out, I am happy to pick them up and deliver them to your home. Hopefully others who are traveling to the larger surrounding towns will join me. Remaining calm and helping our neighbors is the best way to battle this evolving situation.” – Ruby in Cabot
– Sharing supplies that others may need, i.e., toilet paper
“Before all the Covid-19 brou ha ha began we happened to pick up a large package of toilet paper on a Costco run. If any local residents are self-isolating and need a roll (because that appears to be what stores are out of most), send me an email explaining your situation and I will be happy to drop a roll on your doorstep. Be well, everyone!“ – Bill in Burlington
– Suggestions for child care and how to continue schooling at home
“With sudden school and daycare closings, many in our community need child care ASAP. First responders and front line healthcare workers especially need help. If you are a daycare provider, or perhaps a college kid at home with some time on your hands, please consider offering to help with child care. You can respond to FPF or even leave your name, phone number, and capacity at HR@CVHHH.org.” – Rebecca in Montpelier
For creative school projects while at home, see our blog on the topic.
– Reach out to those who feel isolated and tend toward depression.
” Stay in touch, let folks know they are not alone, that someone cares. And I urge anyone out there in our community who feels afraid to be isolated, let someone know that you need support. It’s OK to ask…any time, not just when there is a pandemic.” – Cynthia in Middlesex
– Many businesses use FPF to reach customers.
While health is paramount, the viability of our local economies is urgently important too. Please find ways to buy local during this time, including supporting FPF’s advertisers.
– Try taking in-person gatherings online and let others know
“No surprise here: Open Mic Night will not happen as scheduled in efforts to keep our community healthy and safe. BUT! Don’t let that stop you from sharing your talents! Let’s do Open Mic Night remotely!
If we’re going to socially distance ourselves or a while,
Let’s take every chance we can get to make each other smile!
I’m not a big rhymer, it really just isn’t my style,
But for neighbors I’m happy to weather an extra long mile
See? Poems are already happening. SO:
Send out a link on FPF to a recording of your music!
Post your favorite joke to FPF!
Publish an excerpt from your upcoming novel on FPF for us to read!” – Marie in Huntington
“Talk of the Towns & Topics,” a publication for the Association of Towns of the State of New York, shared news of Front Porch Forum‘s expansion to parts of upstate New York.
FPF has served Vermont towns since 2006, and people use FPF for all sorts of things. This brief daily connection helps neighbors become better informed and more involved in the life of their towns.
“Technology can be used to divide us or bring us together. I really admire the way Front Porch Forum uses the Internet to bring us together. It’s not formulated to keep you in front of your screen. FPF urges you to read the local postings and then get going, and go out and be with your neighbors. That is really important and constructive in terms of building community and building democracy.” • Susan Clark, a Vermont town moderator
“I really love your service and its natural connection to local governments” • Libby with the Assoc. of Towns of the State of New York
Listen to WCRV‘s short interview with FPF’s co-founder, Michael Wood-Lewis, airing this Thurs., Aug. 8 at 8:12 a.m. on 100.1 FM and 1320 AM.
To stream the interview on Thurs., Aug. 8 click here.
Visit Front Porch Forum for the latest and greatest news and announcements!