Story of Fair Haven Concerned
Late one afternoon in 1983 the clergy of Fair Haven invited people from every caring group in town to help our neighbors in the face of government cutbacks. We wanted to help our OWN neighbors connect with others who can help, to eliminate duplication, and to strengthen each group as we try to help our community.
The Town of Fair Haven voted tax money to pay a salary. National and local civic and religious groups contributed for all of the other expenses, and we began in the summer of 1983 with Judy della Camera, long-time outreach worker for BROC, as our leader. The United Way of Rutland County later joined our growing efforts and Our Lady of Seven Dolors church provided us space that continues to be our home!
We gathered volunteer drivers and started a small emergency fuel fund. We began a modest clothing drive, gathered toys at Christmas, and worked actively with the food shelf. In 1998, Judy became seriously ill. BROC came to our aid to help us keep going. We began a Holiday Gala in 1999 to raise money for the Emergency Fund. Hundreds of neighbors and Rutland region businesses joined us. The Town of West Haven has made regular commitments to support our work, so we made that town a part of our basic service area. In 1999 we began a Summer Child Nutrition program for little folks out of school and hungry,
In early 2004, Julie Austin became our new director, bringing her extensive experience in public school administration and a lifetime of involvement in Fair Haven. She completed her work in September 2013.
In 2005 the Town of Benson also began regular support of Fair Haven Concerned and joined our primary service area.
Other programs have grown as new businesses and groups have pitched in, and caring has become a two-way street. We do a weekly food distribution on Wednesdays with a truckload of baked goods and other foods. Recipients have brought food from their own gardens to share with others. Our clothing drive has grown to serve more than 1200 people in 25 towns thanks to the hard work of many of the people who need clothing AND give dozens of their hours to sort and fold clothing for others!
In October 2013 Ashley Bride began her work as our Executife Director. Give her a call abd get to know her! 265-3666!
Fair Haven Concerned is thriving because of people like YOU...
who give and receive help, work and care together.
If you're not already involved, join us!