As the enormity of the impact of COVID-19 has become clear, Vermonters across the state are stepping forward to connect neighbors in need with those that can help. Over the past few weeks, VCRD has been part of a coalition of regional organizers working to facilitate communication between mutual aid groups across the state, compile resources to assist their efforts, and maintain open channels of communication between local volunteers and state leadership. Here are some of the resources that have been put together to support these groups:
First, be sure to visit the Vermont Department of Health's COVID-19 webpage for the latest information on how to protect yourself and others.
This Toolkit and Resource List for Establishing Local COVID-19 Mutual Aid Efforts is intended to serve as a best practices guide for establishing local mutual aid networks. It is a living document, developed in partnership with Community Resilience Organizations, Community Workshop, the Northeast Kingdom Collaborative, the Space on Main, and the Vermont Council on Rural Development. Whether you are already far along the path of organizing COVID-19 response in your community, or just getting started, we hope that it is a helpful resource in thinking about your organizational structure and connecting to nearby allies.
Visit this site for stand-out examples of best practices and other news in the Vermont community recovery, put together by the Local Support and Community Action Team, a committee of Vermont Governor Scott's Economic Mitigation & Recovery Task Force, formed to develop strategies to speed long-term community recovery.
This growing directory of community organizers across the state includes contact information of local response leads at the town, regional, and statewide levels, and can help to identify gaps in response infrastructure. We host regular online convenings for these leaders to foster collaboration and information sharing between groups across the state. Due to the unwieldy nature of this online directory, we are encouraging organizers to complete this form to share information about their local organizing efforts.
In the early days of the pandemic, we hosted weekly Zoom meetings of the COVID-19 Community Response and Mutual Aid Teams (listed in the directory above) throughout Vermont. Visit this page for links to past meeting notes and video, and the next meeting date and login information.
As a team, we are providing technical assistance for those initiating and supporting efforts in their communities. Use this short form to request technical support, to offer it to others, or to be added to our email list specifically for COVID-19 community resources.
If you aren't already a member, consider joining your local Front Porch Forum. FPF is an essential resource for staying informed, giving and getting help, and combating isolation during this crisis. Membership is free, and hundreds of thousands of Vermonters already participate daily.
If you have questions, please don’t hesitate to reach out to [email protected] or (802) 223-6091.