United Way of Northwest Vermont
  • Facebook Icon
  • Instagram Icon
  • LinkedIn Icon
  • YouTube Icon

United Way leverages $180,000 in grants for substance misuse prevention and recovery

United Way of Northwest Vermont (UWNWVT), an organization dedicated to improving lives in Chittenden, Franklin and Grand Isle counties, has sub-awarded $180,000 in grants to 14 local organizations and programs in support of their efforts to reduce substance misuse among youth and young adults in Vermont.

The funding comes from a Vermont Prevention Center of Excellence (PCE) grant awarded to United Way through the Vermont Division of Substance Use Programs (DSU) with federal funds from Department of Health & Human Services and SAMHSA State Opioid Response and CDC Overdose Data to Action.

“Reducing substance misuse across the spectrum from prevention of youth use to supports for recovery is a key priority for United Way of Northwest Vermont and we are thrilled to have been able to sub-award funds from a Vermont Department of Health Prevention Center for Excellence grant to support the important work happening in our community.” says Megan Bridges, United Way Community Impact Manager.

The sub-grants support local efforts focused on:

  • Priority Populations: Services and programs focused on priority populations including youth and young adults who identify as Black, Indigenous, people of color, LGBTQ+, and/or those from households with limited financial means.

  • Retail Cannabis: Activities and initiatives focused on helping communities and families prepare for Retail Cannabis.

  • Amplifying Youth Voices: Activities and initiatives focused on amplifying youth and young adult voice in design and planning of prevention programs and activities and in the operations of the Regional Network.

  • Overdose to Action (OD2A): Expanding capacity and filling gaps in supports and services for people in recovery across Northwest Vermont.

United Way of Northwest Vermont awarded PCE sub-grants to the following organizations, programs and initiatives:

  • Abenaki Circle of Courage, Inc.: Abenaki Circle of Courage teaches native and non-native children from Highgate, Swanton, St. Albans, and Alburgh schools about Abenaki culture including dance, flute, crafts, jewelry, drumming, songs and food. This grant funded a week-long summer camp for deeper learning and engagement.

  • Big Brother Big Sisters of Vermont: Big Brothers Big Sisters of Vermont provides positive relationships for youth through mentoring. This grant will help with recruitment and training of new mentors.

  • Burlington Partnership for a Healthy Community: Burlington Partnership for a Healthy Community addresses the causes and consequences of substance misuse in Burlington. This grant will focus on educational materials around the impact of retail cannabis on youth.

  • Connecting Cultures Program at Vermont Psychological Services: Connecting Cultures at Vermont Psychological Services utilizes an evidence-based model of mental health promotion, assessment and intervention and social work case management specifically designed for refugees, asylum seekers, new Americans and recent immigrants.

  • Franklin County Caring Communities: Franklin County Caring Communities’ Teen Institute is a youth empowerment program implemented in all five high schools in Franklin County and in conjunction with the Milton Community Youth Coalition.

  • LEAPS, Franklin Northeast Supervisory Union: FNESU’s LEAPS summer program at Enosburg Falls Middle and High School provides a safe place for youth over summer break. This grant will support staffing to give more kids access to this program.

  • Lund: Lund helps children thrive by empowering families to break cycles of poverty, addiction and abuse. This grant supports children to engage in a high-quality, therapeutic childcare program at Lund’s Early Childhood Education Program (LECP), which also allows their parents to engage in treatment services to support their recovery.

  • Outright Vermont: This grant supports Camp Outright, a week-long residential camp providing an antidote to the isolation and rejection LGBTQ+ youth face. Events include dances, fashion shows, sports, nature activities, workshops on visual and performing arts, and forums addressing social justice within the LGBTQ+ community.

  • Richford Health Center NOTCH Summer Day Camps: Grant funding will be used to support special events at these free summer day camps in Richford and Swanton including taiko drumming, songwriter workshops, theater, and archery.

  • Trinity Educational Center, Inc.: Trinity Educational Center provides youth and young adults in the community with a space that is safe, inclusive, educational, and empowering. These funds will be used to support the “Empowering youth = Healthy lifestyle” 10-week summer program at their Infinite Youth Center in South Burlington.

  • Unleashing the Power of Partnership for Learning, Inc. (UP for Learning): UP for Learning will support the Northwest Vermont Regional Prevention Network in developing a mental framework for what youth-adult partnerships can look like and assist the Network’s Youth Voice Action Team in creating recommendations and an implementation plan to amplify youth voice.

  • UP for Learning Getting to “Y” trainings: UP for Learning will provide Getting to “Y” trainings to schools in Northwest Vermont. Getting to “Y” is an action research program that helps youth bring meaning to their local Youth Risk Behavior Survey data.

  • Turning Point Center of Chittenden County: TPCCC provides recovery support services in a safe, substance-free environment for individuals and families on multiple paths to self-discovery and sustained recovery. This grant supports peer recovery outreach to all low-barrier facilities in Chittenden County.

  • Turning Point of Franklin County, Alburgh Outreach Office: TPFC is a community center for people in recovery from alcohol and substance misuse, addiction and addictive behaviors located in St. Albans with outreach offices in Richford and Enosburg. This grant helped to establish an outreach office in Alburgh to offer the first peer recovery support service in Grand Isle County.

  • Vermonters for Criminal Justice Reform: This grant supports VCJR’s work to mitigate the overdose crisis by providing services to the particularly high-risk population of justice-involved people who are living with opioid use disorder or who are otherwise at high risk for fatal drug overdose. Project components will include case management, drug treatment coordination, and recovery support.

To see more information about United Way’s work around youth well-being and reducing substance misuse, visit our Northwest Vermont Regional Prevention Center. For more information about these subgrants, contact Megan Bridges at megan@unitedwaynwvt.org.

Grantee Spotlight:

Turning Point of Franklin County’s Alburgh Outreach Office

When volunteers on United Way’s Partner Funding Team learned there were no peer recovery supports for people affected by substance misuse in the Champlain Islands, they decided something needed to be done.

“Now more than ever, we need to break down barriers and end the stigma that stops people affected by substance use disorder – including families – from accessing help. Turning Point of Franklin County has long been a United Way funded partner and we are proud to support their expansion in Alburgh to make their services more accessible to our neighbors in the Islands,” said CEO Jesse Bridges.

Check out My NBC5’s story for more on how this service is meeting local needs.