“I don’t know what I’d do for work if it wasn’t for VYCC,” said one Crew Member of the Newport Food & Farm Crew. With support from the Northeast Kingdom Fund of the Vermont Community Foundation, the Windham Foundation, and the Oakland Foundation, Vermont Youth Conservation Corps (VYCC) employed five youth from the Newport area to work on VYCC’s Health Care Share project this summer.
The Vermont Youth Conservation Corps (VYCC) campus buzzed with action last week. Corps Members wrapped up a summer of farming and two-weeks of campus improvement projects to prevent erosion and increase accessibility. Having a subset of Corps Members on campus presented The Corps Network (TCN) board of directors a unique opportunity to see VYCC programming in person, and to recognize VYCC for its leadership and innovation within the national corps movement.
Blood pressure? Check. Cholesterol? Check. Pasture-raised chicken?For most of us, the first two are what we expect from a visit to our primary care doctor’s office . . . but here in Vermont, on any given day, you might just find a farmer’s market outside your primary care medical home.
In June, the Vermont Youth Conservation Corps (VYCC)’s was honored by the Woodstock community with the Annette Compton Fiertz Award. The award recognizes outstanding contributions by individuals or organizations that advance the Woodstock Trails Partnership goals of trail stewardship, outreach and education, volunteerism, and partnership development that supports and enhances the Woodstock trail network.
The Health Care Share project has become a vital community resource to hundreds of Vermont families. One Health Care Share Member explained that “without the Health Care Share we’d be in a world of hurt.” With funding from International Paper Foundation, VYCC was able to distribute over 74,000 pounds of farm-fresh produce to families who need it most.
To meet our primary goals of deepening Corps Members’ experience and expanding capacity for VYCC's future, VYCC has hired two new key new leadership roles.
During the 2018 field season, supported by funding from the Vermont Department of Environmental Conservation (VTDEC), Vermont Youth Conservation Corps (VYCC) youth and young adult crews completed 27 weeks of work to directly address erosion and nutrient pollution in surface water across the state. These issues directly contribute to the deteriorating health of Vermont’s rivers, ponds, and lakes and are what the state’s Clean Water Act was created to address.
Upon receiving the grant, Dan Bailey, Development Director of VYCC said, "The continued annual support from the International Paper Foundation is a difference maker in the success of the HCS program. These funds help us meet our programmatic goal of reaching over 500 hundred food-insecure families throughout Vermont.”
PRESS RELEASE: VYCC’S FOOD AND FARM PROGRAM NATIONALLY RECOGNIZED FOR TOP YOUTH CORPS PROJECT OF THE YEAR
The Vermont Youth Conservation Corps (VYCC)’s Health Care Share (HCS) was among four national Youth Corps projects honored by The Corps Network at the end of 2017. The HCS is a community-based public health project that connects Vermont families unable to afford or access nutritious food with a weekly share of farm fresh produce. The program is managed by VYCC staff and supported largely through AmeriCorps service members.