Civic Engagement Positions

Does your organization have an open board position that you would like to publicize with VT PoC members?

Cathedral Square
We are housing developers, caregivers, maintenance specialists, health care professionals, social workers and public-policy advocates dedicated to promoting healthy homes, caring communities and positive aging. At Cathedral Square, older adults and people with disabilities and other challenges can live their lives to the fullest -- in communities where age and wisdom are valued and respected, where diversity in all its forms is welcome and celebrated. We have a 13-member board that helps guide and support us!
KidSafe Collaborative
KidSafe Collaborative is a partnership of agencies, organizations and individuals working together to prevent and address child abuse and neglect in our community. We are the only independent Chittenden County, Vermont agency focused solely on keeping our community working together to prevent and address child abuse and neglect. KidSafe’s mission is: to engage community groups, individuals and agencies to work together to improve our community’s prevention of and response to child abuse and neglect. KidSafe Collaborative grew out of a grassroots process when social workers and other human services providers realized they could be of greater service to families in need of support if they were able to share information about their clients – both children and adults. From this beginning – the first ‘child protection team’ meetings at the former Mary Fletcher Hospital in 1969 – grew long-term agency commitments to collaborate and work as a community to address and prevent child abuse and neglect. Evolving and expanding through incorporation as the Community Network for Children, Youth and Families in 1986, a major federal grant in 1998, and a range of added projects and activities, KidSafe has become the recognized leader of a unique collaborative process.
Vermont Production Collective
Vermont Production Collective was established in 2021 to support established and aspiring artist in film production and related fields. We collaborate with film festivals around the state to host networking events for local creators, panel discussions on industry topics, and discussions to learn from working experts in the field, and are developing programming to facilitate mentorships and hands-on learning opportunities for students, recent grads, and people transitioning into the field. We also assist in the creation of local in-person meetup groups to promote casual networking at a local and regional level. Last year we launched the Vermont Screenplay Incubator program, which over the course of nine months is helping to refine five screenplays written by Vermont authors. All the screenplays are set in Vermont, so we are hoping to create a pipeline of homegrown work which can help develop a thriving local ecosystem for creators, from the writers to on-set crew and post-production professionals. Additionally, we have been working with the Vermont Arts Council to advise on the creation of a statewide body for the coordination of the industry, as well as a crew, locations, jobs and internship database. At this time our organization is run by an all-volunteer (voting) board of directors with the assistance of a (non-voting) advisory board, consisting of members from all over the state with backgrounds in film, non-profit administration, advertising, higher education, technical education, and event planning.
Middlebury Natural Foods Co-op
The Middlebury Natural Foods Co-op is more than a superb natural grocery store. It’s a community-owned, democratically-governed cooperative business that supports local farmers, provides jobs, and increases access to healthy foods. Our Co-op is stronger when all our community members are represented. Add your voice by joining the Co-op board! Serving on the board is one way that member-owners can participate in strategic oversight and help make our collaborative, democratic organization thrive. Our board strives to be actively anti-racist and inclusive. Board members receive a yearly stipend and a 10% store discount, plus ample learning and leadership development opportunities. Board elections take place every May. Apply by March 10, 2024 to run for the board. For details, click here, email board@middlebury.coop, or ask for a board application packet at the co-op register.
Vermont Citizens Advisory Committee on Lake Champlain's Future
The Vermont Citizens Advisory Committee on Lake Champlain’s Future (VTCAC) is recruiting one member to serve in the committee’s vacant Citizen-at-Large seat. The VTCAC is a diverse group of community members, lake advocates, business representatives, farmers, and legislators united through their interest in a clean, healthy Lake Champlain. The 14-member committee (ten community members and four state legislators) provides an opportunity for diverse interests to work together to develop an action agenda for improving water quality and enhancing the natural, cultural, recreational, and economic resources of the Lake Champlain Basin. VTCAC members are charged with submitting an annual report to the Vermont General Assembly that maps out recommended actions to protect the integrity of the lake. The VTCAC meets regularly as an organization and annually with New York and Quebec CACs to discuss issues of mutual concern and to advise the Lake Champlain Steering Committee. The Lake Champlain Steering Committee guides the Lake Champlain Basin Program and is responsible for implementing the Lake Champlain Management Plan "Opportunities for Action." To learn more and apply visit https://forms.gle/57C1Ho5hWeyFSj8y9
John Graham Housing & Services
Mission John Graham Housing & Services (JGHS) has a mission to provide emergency shelter, affordable housing, and essential services to individuals and families without a home or facing housing instability. The JGHS mission is strengthened by intensive service coordination at three critical access points—homeless prevention, eviction prevention, and rapid rehousing. With seven properties spread across Addison County, JGHS does this work in collaboration with community partners. Population Served JGHS annually serves approximately 400 people without a home or facing housing instability in Addison County, Vermont, including those fleeing domestic violence, veterans, elders, parents with children, and those with mental health disorder, physical disability, and/or substance use disorder. JGHS clients are homeless, low-income, and/or unemployed. In the 07/01/22-06/30/23 period, women comprised 60% of the adults served; 39% were men; and 1% gender nonconforming. Racially, 79% were White, 11% Black, and 10% Other; 11% were Hispanic/Latino. Children of both sexes represented 27% of the JGHS population. Eleven percent (11%) were LBGTQIA+. Three clients were Veterans. Organization History John Graham Housing & Services (JGHS) first opened its doors in 1981 offering food and shelter, mostly to single people. Over the next two decades, more families with children began to seek shelter. Between 2000 and 2010 the numbers of homeless people in Addison County grew as housing prices began to climb and low-income families were edged-out of the housing market. To meet the growing need, JGHS purchased and renovated four apartment buildings, each with three or four affordable apartment units ranging from single occupancy efficiencies to four-bedroom apartments. In 2010, the opioid epidemic brought new challenges as people increasingly struggled with co-occurring mental health and substance use disorders. With the community mental health system under stress, JGHS began to provide therapeutic support, including counseling services, especially for children and those struggling with trauma. Today, JGHS has a licensed clinical social worker as its program director and has expanded to include six affordable housing properties across Addison County, in addition to the John Graham Emergency Shelter in Vergennes. The agency is committed to utilizing nationally recognized, evidence-based interventions, trauma-informed care, and client-centered services including needs assessment, housing navigation, service coordination, employment coaching, and referral to treatment and other wrap-around services. Since the COVID-19 pandemic, JGHS has continued to provide services at motels and hotels where individuals and families experiencing homelessness are placed when shelters are full. The Case for Need The difficulties leading to homelessness are systemic and often intergenerational. Vermont is facing a serious housing crisis. This isn’t a new crisis, but it is certainly one that has been exasperated by the COVID-19 pandemic. Nationally, housing stock has fallen to one third of what it was in the 1980s. Addison County is not immune to this downward trend. Record numbers of Addison County individuals and families are experiencing homelessness or are at risk of losing their homes: • On the annual homeless Point-In-Time (PIT) count on January 25, 2023, 3,295 Vermonters were experiencing homelessness—an 18.5% increase in persons (515 people) compared to the prior year, and an increase of 197% since the pre-pandemic PIT count in 2020 (Vermont Coalition to End Homelessness 2023). • Vermont has the second highest per-capita rate of homelessness in the country, behind only California. In the 2023 PIT count, the number of people with children experiencing homelessness increased by 36% compared to the prior year, compared to an 11% increase of people in households with adults only. • Addison County has a vacancy rate of less than one percent (1%). Sheltered households with approved housing vouchers often cannot find an apartment to rent. Additionally, rental rates increased in Addison County by almost 6% in 2022 and are predominantly higher than our clients can afford. Additionally, the impact of homelessness and housing instability are adversely hurting children in Vermont. During the last quarter of 2022, there were 1,067 children in State of Vermont DCF custody due to poverty, homelessness, substance misuse, and trauma (Child Protection in Vermont Report 2022). Homeless children are suffering from Adverse Childhood Events (ACEs) which are strongly related to chronic illnesses, early substance use, depression, and anxiety across the lifespan. Current Programming There are three essential components to JGHS program delivery for individuals and families served: Emergency Shelter, Affordable Housing, and Service Coordination. 1. Emergency Shelter: The JGHS Emergency Shelter is located at 69 Main Street in Vergennes. The building contains nine separate units with a total of 22 beds, with units ranging from single occupancy to up to five beds. The site is a two-story congregate setting, with shared bathrooms, living room, and kitchen. A food shelf service, accessible to anyone in need in the community, is located on the second floor of the Shelter. Individuals and families access shelter by calling the office or walking in. The JGHS Emergency Shelter is open 24 hours a day. 2. Affordable Housing: Since 2019, JGHS has expanded to include dissemination of Project-Based Vouchers (PBV) that empower households to move quickly from emergency shelter to a permanent rental unit. The PBV option is especially successful among families challenged by trauma, disability, and domestic violence. JGHS has six properties where households can become tenants via a PBV or other housing voucher. These include: 74/76 Green Street, Vergennes; 24 Mountain Street, Bristol; 42 N Pleasant Street, Middlebury; and three Zero Energy Modular homes (ZEMs), Kountry Trailer Park, Bristol. Collectively, these properties have 18 available apartments. 3. Service Coordination: Upon entry at JGHS, service coordinators work with each client household to a) screen for trauma, accessibility, mental health disorder, and substance use disorder, and b) create an Individual Service Plan (ISP) to support each family’s goals. Clients meet regularly with their service coordinator who facilitates implementation of the ISP via a combination of in-person support and meetings with other community partners. Each JGHS service coordinator works with a caseload of 15-20 households, using Motivational Interviewing (Miller & Rollnick 2013) and Trauma Informed Care (Classen & Clark 2017)—both evidence-based practices. Program Goals Program goals to be tracked for the current fiscal year include: 1. 75 households (150 people) receive shelter, housing, and services 2. 10 households move into stable housing within six months of entering shelter 3. An additional 200 people receive services (food, transportation, referral to substance use and mental health disorder services, housing navigation, and housing retention) 4. 90% of households complete an Individual Service Plan (ISP) within one month of entry 5. 75% of those stably housed remain housed at the conclusion of twelve months Success for JGHS individuals and families served is permanent housing with wrap around supports that help both adults and children navigate whatever barriers exist for them – mental health, financial mismanagement, poor or no rental history, and/or substance use disorder recovery. Staff is trained in Trauma Informed Care and recognize that everyone JGHS serves has a history of trauma. The more we invest in the health and wellbeing of those who are poor and sick, the healthier our overall community becomes. The JGHS population is our communal population, and we are actively helping people move into safe, healthy, and productive lives and lifestyles. The children of homelessness and poverty will become adults, and how we treat them and help them now informs the adults they will become. Shelter is the essential first step. Moving into more permanent housing is the second step. Retaining that housing is the third and most important step critically linked to the personal healing that finally leads to happy and healthy lives. Measurable Outcomes In July 2021, JGHS launched a new, electronic system called Community CareLink (CCL) for collecting data to enhance our evaluation process and improve program quality assurance. CCL is an electronic health record specifically designed for behavioral health case management. CCL empowers a client’s Individual Service Plan (ISP) by setting tasks and deadlines for each life domain. This supports a targeted approach by the service coordinator and allows JGHS to track housing, employment, and education goals. CCL has also empowered JGHS to: • Standardize client records and case notes to ensure timely follow up and data collection • Standardize electronic screenings for mental health, substance use disorders, and trauma • Measure client progress, including resilience and progress toward ISP goals • Measure the efficacy of program service delivery and implement changes when indicated • Provide accurate data and program outcomes to funders and key stakeholders • Improved connection and coordination with county and state organizations Additionally, the JGHS Outcomes Committee has developed Logic Models for each of the agency’s program areas: Emergency Shelter, Affordable Housing, and Service Coordination. The Outcomes Committee meets monthly to assess data from CCL and compare results with targeted goals in each Logic Model. Results are reported to both JGHS staff and board on a quarterly basis. Committee members include JGHS Board members with expertise in evaluation and assessment, as well as the JGHS Program Director, Director of Quality Assurance, and Executive Director.   Leadership & Sustainability JGHS has a staff of nine full-time employees, seven part-time employees, and one student intern. The Leadership Team includes an Executive Director, Program Director, Finance Director, and Director of Quality Assurance. Direct service staff include Service Coordinators who work directly with guests in the John Graham Shelter and client households living in JGHS affordable housing apartments and scattered affordable housing sites across Addison County. Shelter coverage, 24/7, is provided by the Shelter Manager, Night Managers, and Shelter Coordinators. Property management is provided by the Property Manager and an Assistant Property Manager. We are proud to have a 95% staff retention rate in a field that typically sees a lot of turnovers. The John Graham Board of Directors numbers 14. Our board also features an array of expertise, including those working professionally in finance, mental health, human services, children's services, real estate, government relations, and philanthropy. Board Committees include the Executive, Governance, Finance, and Outcomes Measurement. The Board meets monthly on the fourth Monday of each month. Currently an Ad Hoc Rental Property Committee is reviewing the status of JGHS’s affordable housing portfolio. Financially, in 42 years of operation, JGHS has had no-fault findings on its annual independent external audit. Year to year, JGHS is supported by a balanced array of public and private support from federal, state, and local government, United Way, individual donors, and private foundations. Community Partnership and Collaboration JGHS is an active participant in the Addison County Housing Coalition, a consortium of housing agencies that report to the State of Vermont Office of Economic Opportunity (OEO). The Addison County Housing Coalition, together with the Balance of State Continuum of Care, is administered by the Vermont Coalition to End Homelessness (VCEH). VCEH, in turn, coordinates Vermont’s annual, collective application for federal Housing & Urban Development (HUD) funding. JGHS’s primary partners in coordinated care for the individuals and families served include: • Addison County Restorative Justice: Restorative justice service for reentry population • Addison Housing Works (AHW): Affordable housing in Addison County (formerly ACCT) • Atria Collaborative: Domestic Violence shelter and services (formerly WomenSafe) • Champlain Valley Office of Economic Opportunity (CVOEO): Food, fuel, and housing • Charter House Coalition: Low-barrier overnight shelter • Children’s Integrated Services (CIS): Early intervention, family support, and prevention • Counseling Service of Addison County (CSAC): Mental health services • Hannaford Career Center: Employment services • HireAbility: Employment services for those with disabilities • HOPE (Helping Overcome Poverty’s Effects): Food shelf, resale store, financial/career services • Parent Child Center: Support and education for families with children • Turning Point of Addison County: Substance use disorder services • United Way of Addison County: Vermont Foodbank: Food services and delivery • Vermont Adult Learning: Education and career training for adults
Pride Center of Vermont
PCVT’s Board of Directors is a governing board responsible for developing the organization's vision and mission to serve Vermont’s LGBTQ+ communities, through support of long term goals, raising funds, and ensuring financial and community accountability. Board members are also being developed as leaders through their involvement in various community work and community coalitions. Fill out our board application here: https://forms.gle/HZKPhbJE7wCnTRHJ7
Greater Falls Connections
Greater Falls Connections is a substance misuse prevention and community building coalition. We have an advisory board that helps mostly with the monitoring of expenses and sounding board for staff. The board is requested to help at community events and with fundraising. The board meets once a month (currently in-person on the fourth Monday of the month, at 5:30 p.m., at Parks Place Resource Center in Bellows Falls) along with committee meetings. Members are generally elected to the board during the annual meeting held in late June, however members can be voted onto the board at any time. The application to be a board member is located at https://tinyurl.com/2s4ccewy.
Vermont Land Trust
Rooted in Vermont since 1977, the Vermont Land Trust has protected more than 620,000 acres of farmland, forestland, and community lands covering over 11% of the state. Much of this land is privately-owned and contributes to our local food, maple and timber products, tourism and recreation, and the vitality of our towns and villages.