“This is the first job I’ve ever had with no pay and where I go home every day feeling good that I’ve done something good for someone.” – Wanda, 5 year, 4 days per week, NEK Office Volunteer. Wanda, on her own, convinced the Housing non-profit that own her apartment building and several others to organize a staff team to shop for and deliver our Food Share food to their shut-in residents in Lyndon which now serves an extra 21 elderly and disabled neighbors.
Four years ago “I was one of the people standing in line at the food share, we had 3 kids that was not ours and it was get free food or our meds. Now I am a volunteer and the one that organizes and oversees the volunteers who help pack the food boxes, and love what I am doing. I don’t know what we would have done if it was not for the food share and lately as I have been going through Chemo and all, it helps give me something to look forward to so thankful.” Cindy
“I want to thank you so much for the Good Will money you don’t know how much this help me and my two sisters. We had so much fun it was what we needed our mom just up and left us it has been so hard Dad is doing the best but there was no way he would have got us school clothes our Aunt Cindy made it a fun day we did cry but it was happy one she took us shopping and out to eat and to Walmart to get the personal things we could not get at the good Will. I really don’t know what to say but thank you so much our Aunt Cindy has been here for us day and night to help us get through this I hope we can make it as hard as it is.”
“Your generosity is overwhelming! Thank you so much for your help in getting my Power Seat.”
A woman, who had lived with an old friend for 20 years in Concord, VT, was trading housework for room and board when the ‘friend’ suddenly abandoned her with the house, the bills, no income and no support. She called on Faith in Action, whose volunteers helped her get food and transportation to job interviews. Through all these challenges, she has never given up and is determined to turn her unfortunate situation into a great opportunity. “Thanks to Faith in Action I was able to do face to face interviews and start a business plan to turn the house into a bed and breakfast.”
“This is the first job I’ve ever had with no pay and I go home very day feeling good that I’ve done something good for someone.” – Wanda, Office Volunteer
“I took a Food Share box to a woman with many children whom I felt could do with a little extra help. I was delighted that I stopped by. As she stood there with tears in her eyes telling me that the food would make a huge difference, it made me feel humble. Thank you Faith in Action for giving me the opportunity to volunteer.” – Patrick
“I received from Faith in Action $300 in Goodwill vouchers. It helped get clothing for 11 young children, 1 veteran and 2 elderly persons. This is a wonderful program.” Thank you, Peggy
“Thanks for working with me and with the Reach Up Program. I will miss the good collaborations when I retire in July! It has been a pleasure. I hope your endeavors succeed.” Sincerely, Marie
“Elevator. Thanks again.” A friend of Faith in Action
“I am here because my husband is disabled and our income is limited and without this foodbank we would have a hard time getting food to eat. Thank you.” – Mae
“I am here because I have four kids and a husband and myself so only have one income and just need a little extra help with food. Have one child with health problems. Also have two temporary people with me.”
“The furnace works GREAT! We don’t have to worry about it leaking, us or the kids getting sick! Thank you. What a blessing Faith in Action has been; we just can’t thank you enough.” – Young seniors who had recently been granted guardianship of two grandchildren and living, by necessity, off grid on a Class 4 road.
“There are pockets of us who are feeling so alone and without anyone, topped all over the mountains of Vermont. Faith in Action is going around and un-tucking us one by one. Now I have someone.” -Eva
An elderly Vermont farm wife became seriously ill, and was given only months to live, but her secret wish was to attend ‘one more Seniors’ Adventure Morning’. Almost 2 years later, on her birthday, dressed up in her best black dress, in her husband-powered wheelchair, she returned to her beloved seniors program and friends. Now with over three years past, her needs have helped spawn our handiwork social program, as she and her husband are more attentive and appreciative of each other than ever.
“I like coming here because the people are friendly. I like doing the crafts and being with my friends. Getting to interact and help people when they need it. I like how everybody gets treated the same, whether they are young or old. It would probably be a whole page if I could think of every reason why I like coming here.”-Amanda
An elderly man recovering from both a hip replacement and an emergency heart bypass was placed in a local senior living facility at Christmas, with only his unfilled prescriptions. Our volunteer brought his medicines, provided a phone and checked on him, filling that gap until agency services became active, and then helped with car and truck repair issues. We transported him to numerous medical appointments and continued to support him until he was well enough to move to a more desirable (to him) large community in western Vermont
“I received a phone call from an elderly lady we assisted telling me she didn’t know how the people managed before faith and action became a part of the community. That dear soul passed away in March but I take great comfort knowing that we made her last few months much easier for her.”-Sue
“Dear Rev. Cobb,
I am writing to thank you for the beautiful ramp that we now have thanks to you and the Faith in Action network. Having a ramp was one of the key elements needed in order for my mother to live safely at home again after several months long stay in the nursing home. I cannot tell you what a blessing it is to have my mother living back home again…
Because my mother now walks with a walker, having a ramp is absolutely necessary as a safe means of exit for her to be living at home again. The ramp has replaced the wobbly old steps that used to be outside the front door and were not safe for anyone, much less a frail, 85-year-old lady. Since much of my mother’s money got spent on nursing home costs, the Faith in Action program was a financial blessing for us, as was the fact that we were able to use a recycled ramp for parts of the structure and thus save on building materials. I love the spirit of community and neighborliness that the Faith In Action program embodies. To me the ramp is more than just a wooden structure; it is a work of art and, as I said to you in person, a godsend. Thanks again for everything.”- Lucy
“Getting help and being with other people. There is someone to visit and talk to. It is comfortable and relaxing. I like helping other people, volunteering. The people are friendly. Coming here gets me out of the house, and I like doing crafts. Being here can help me mentally.”-Candy
“Surprise! Surprise! It came as no surprise that a warm, fuzzy feeling of doing good accompanied each trip I made for Faith In Action, driving folks in need of a ride for various errands and appointments. It was a feeling I guarded against, however, because ego should have no part in volunteering to be Christ’s hands (or tires!) in this mission. What did come as a surprise blessing was the overwhelming feeling of gratitude and contentment in my modest circumstances and humble home as I saw the living conditions of some of the folks who called for rides. A thankful heart for all I have been blessed with has been a gift I received for sharing so little with those who need so much.”-Nancy
“FIA gives me the opportunity to meet with a group of people and relate. It keeps my mind open to things going on outside my home. After attending a meeting with the Group, I always come home thinking “oh, gosh what fun,” and I like feeling that I can participate in some way. FIA gives me a feeling of belonging; which you don’t find a lot these days.”-Pauline
When an active but longtime MS patient took a sudden painful turn for the worse we organized long-term daily visits, phone check-ins and advocated for improved medical coordination and expanded services. After many difficult months she was able to be out and active and again attend Senior Adventure Mornings.
One middle aged wheelchair bound man, whose wife had just suffered a stroke, called to see if there was any way we could help cut up four cords of tree length firewood. It seems his 85 year old father was wearing out trying to do it himself. Thanks to our caring volunteers, the firewood was all cut and stacked in less than a week. We work tirelessly, to find ways to meet needs, not excuses why they can’t be met.
At a recent 5,000 lb food distribution, an elderly amputee told our local volunteer leader, “We will never forget what you did for us last winter.”. Our community volunteers had patched the leaking roof of their trailer, jacked up and resupported the falling bathroom floor, fixed windows and plastic-wrapped the entire trailer and small addition against the wind and snow so they wouldn’t freeze to death. Happily, they are now in a rent subsidized apartment.
These stories and many other demonstrate why our expansion effort is so important. Our new, local Volunteer Coordinators will be critical to our effort to better develop and manage local volunteers to serve the ever-increasing need for our programs and services.