Strange Summer.

We are deep into the “beautiful season” as I like to call it. The many shades and textures of green are almost overwhelming. There are lines in front of dairy bars (hopefully socially-distanced), and people are floating down rivers in inner tubes. Sounds like a typical Vermont summer…except for the socially-distanced part. That’s a giveaway. This is really NOT a normal summer in Vermont, or anywhere else in the world, for that matter. We are reeling from months of news coverage and personal stories about the COVID-19 pandemic. The economy is suffering, and most importantly, people are suffering. Our care recipients tend to be somewhat isolated to begin with, and the enforced isolation precipitated by the pandemic has made a less-than-ideal situation even worse.

Through a grant from the Hoehl Family Foundation, we’ve been able to donate $5,000 in food gift cards to our nearly 80 care recipients. I’ve received many sweet thank you notes in the mail and several phone calls, all with the same message: Thank you for noticing that we are still here. Our liability insurance makes it impossible for us to provide the services we normally do, most importantly transportation to appointments. It goes counter to the very idea of Neighbor to Neighbor. We are an organization to exists to help our care recipients in a number of different ways, and right now, we are grounded.

Everyone wants to know when we will start to give rides again and to hold our monthly social events. It’s frustrating for me as the executive director to have to hold steady to our limitations. Maybe more than anyone else, I want to get back to normal. I miss our care recipients, and I know they need to get places. As soon as we are able to start back up with our usual services, I will let you know. In the meantime, thank you for your ongoing support. Donations are gratefully accepted and help us keep the lights on here at the office. You can donate by clicking on the Donate tab above.

May you have a healthy, safe summer and take in the beauty of our green mountain state.

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