Community Engagement Database

The following database provides community engagement opportunities specifically delineated by local organizations for Bennington College students. The Community Engagement Database can be used for a variety of purposes, whether you would like to partner with a local organization around a class project, connect your club/org to the larger Bennington community, or just become more involved in the Town of Bennington. Contact Michael Thomson or email acts@bennington.edu with any questions.

Activities/Events

HAYC3

  • Description: HAYC3 (Hoosick Armory, Youth Center, and Community Coalition) is a non-profit organization whose mission is to foster the well-being of our community. This is accomplished through a variety of rural revival initiatives including arts, wellness, youth & community programs, small business incubation, community events and outreach, and partnerships with community organizations.
  • Opportunities: There are a variety of opportunities to engage at HAYC3 as events come and go on an ad hoc basis.
  • Contact: Aelish Nealon at aelishnealon@gmail.com for more information.
  • Location: 80 Church St, Hoosick Falls, NY 12090

Images Cinema

  • Description: Images Cinema is the only year-round, non-profit, independent film house in the Berkshires. Ever-expanding to entertain and educate with quality programming, Images maintains a strong dedication to independent film and media.
  • Opportunities: Work in concessions, housekeeping, and/or support at parties and special events. If you have an area of interest or a skill you'd be willing to share, it is more than welcome.
  • Contact: Janet at comments@imagescinema.org or (413) 458-1039
  • Location: 50 Spring St, Williamstown, MA 01267
  • Public Transportation: GMX from College to Williams Inn (1 transfer)
    • Monday–Friday: Brown Line from College to 215 Pleasant Street, Purple Line from 215 Pleasant Street to Williams Inn.

Left Bank

  • Description: The Left Bank is a ten-minute walk from campus and hosts a vibrant community gathering space for art  and performances. The community rooms host a wide variety of classes and are available for events and workshops.
  • Opportunities: Bennington College's Student Engagement Office has a partnership with the Left Bank wherein you can use the space for club meetings, performances, or other uses that respect the communal nature of the space. In addition, The Left Bank offers a number of community-focused projects for students to engage in. These include arts and culture map-making, art gallery sitting, youth engagement, publicity and marketing work, and grant writing.
  • Contact: Matt Scott at mscott@bennington.edu, Amy Anselmo at amyanselmovt@gmail.com or Christine Graham at cpgraham@sover.net or (802) 681-7161
  • Location: 5 Bank Street, North Bennington, VT 05257

MASS MoCA

  • Description: Since opening in 1999, MASS MoCA has become one of the world's premier centers for making, displaying, and enjoying today’s most important art, music, dance, theater, film and video. With annual attendance of 120,000, it ranks among the most visited institutions in the US dedicated to new art. Hundreds of works of visual and performing art have been created during fabrication and rehearsal residencies by many of the most important artists of today—both well known, and emerging—focusing on large-scale and complex installations that are impossible to realize in conventional museums. The museum thrives on making and presenting work that is fresh, engaging, and challenging while re-invigorating the life of a region in socioeconomic need.
  • Opportunities: You can engage with MASS MoCA as a College Ambassador, Festival Volunteer, and/or Performing Arts Usher. In addition, you can check out up to two free MASS MoCA passes from Crossett Library.
  • Contact: Julia Melnick at jmelnick@massmoca.org or (413) 662-2111 for more information.
  • Location: 1040 Mass MoCA Way, North Adams, MA 01247

Vermont Arts Exchange

  • Description: Since 1994 VAE’s mission has been to strengthen communities and neighborhoods through the arts and to bring art, art education, exhibition and performance opportunities to people of all ages, abilities, and income levels.
  • Opportunities: There are many ways to become involved including as an individual artist, instructor, or assistant in a class. Other ways to help are through office assistance, studio help, phone reception, and distribution of posters and brochures. In addition to volunteer opportunities, there are often discounted student prices to concerts and performances. The VAE also has a limited number of positions available for students with Federal Work Study as part of their Financial Aid package, in addition to positions for Field Work Term open to all.
  • Contact: Rachel Payne at infovae@comcast.net or (802) 442-5549
  • Location: 48 Main St, North Bennington, VT 05257
  • Public Transportation: GMX from College to 215 Pleasant Street Monday–Friday: Brown Line ; Saturday: Light Green Line

Animal Care

Second Chance Animal Center

  • Description: Second Chance Animal Center (SCAC) is dedicated to providing compassionate shelter and adoption services for the animals in the center’s care, improving the lives of companion animals in the communities via spay/neuter assistance, and giving humane education, advocacy, and investigative assistance to law enforcement agencies.
  • Opportunities: Bennington ACTS provides transportation for a number of volunteer trips to Second Chance every term. Students could volunteer through a variety of tasks including cleaning kennels, assisting with clerical duties in the office, groundskeeping work around the center, and walking dogs. If you would like to become involved with SCAC, please fill out a volunteer application.
  • Contact: Bennington ACTS at acts@bennington.edu or Cathleen Perrone at scacprograms@wildblue.net
  • Location: 6779 Vermont 7A, Shaftsbury, VT 05262

Bennington College Groups and Initiatives

The American Red Cross

  • Description: The American Red Cross exists to provide compassionate care to those in need. ARC’s network of generous donors, volunteers and employees share a mission of preventing and relieving suffering, both at home and around the world.
  • Opportunities: ARC holds a public blood drive on campus at least once each term. All eligible community members are encouraged to donate blood. Interested students can help organize and staff the event and/or donate blood. In addition, through the ARC Leaders Save Lives Program, you can host your own blood drive and win prizes and scholarships.
  • Contact: Kilpatrick Fellow for Community Michael Thomson or ARC Representative Donna Sepkowski at donna.sepkowski@redcross.org.

DREAM

  • Description: The DREAM Program, Inc. is a mentoring organization that pairs college students with youth from affordable housing neighborhoods. These mentoring relationships empower children to lead healthy, productive lives.
  • Opportunities: College students mentor youth from age 6-17 years old once a week, for two hours. Mentors get the opportunity to develop leadership  and organizational skills, learn how to empower and become role models, all while having fun.
  • Contact: Email DREAM co-leaders Jessica Zeng and Zoe Aloise for more information.

Habitat for Humanity

  • Description: Habitat for Humanity is a nonprofit organization building houses with people in need regardless of race or religion alongside volunteers and supporters from all backgrounds. HH has more than 1,500 local affiliates in the US and more than 70 national organizations around the world, helping to build or repair more than 800,000 houses and has served more than four million people worldwide. Striving to make safe, decent, affordable housing a matter of conscience and action for all members of the community. HH’s Bennington chapter seeks to create homeownership opportunities and lasting financial security for low-income families in Bennington County.
  • Opportunities: Bennington Habitat for Humanity typically builds on Wednesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays from 8:00 am-3:30 pm and welcomes people of all skill levels above the age of 16.
  • Contact: David Norman for more information on the Bennington College Habitat for Humanity Club.

Community Safety

Center for Restorative Justice

  • Description: The Center for Restorative Justice of Bennington County is a private, non-profit organization that seeks to provide a swift and constructive community response to crime/delinquency, offering vast programming and services within the framework of restorative justice. Programming, services, and support benefits offenders, victims, community through a confidential, community-based, and common sense approach. The Center CREATES opportunities for individuals to take responsibility for their actions, make amends to victims, STRENGTHEN communities through prevention, education and intervention programs and EMPOWER persons to take an active role in responding to the safety and well-being of themselves and their community.
  • Opportunities: Students can serve internships, Restorative Panel Member, or Re-Entry services which is a critical component of restorative justice process. The duties of Panelist include reviewing case summaries and background information, interviewing prospective CRJ candidates; engage them in a conversation by asking open-ended, effective-motivational interviewing style restorative questions, then deciding to create a restorative agreement with participants. Interested and qualified students could serve on a regularly scheduled Panel.
  • Contact: Bill Brown at wbrown@bcrj.org or 802-447-1595.
  • Location: 439 Main Street, Suite 2, Bennington, VT 05201
  • Public Transportation: GMX from College to 215 Pleasant Street

Project Against Violent Encounters (PAVE)

  • Description: PAVE’s mission is to end domestic and sexual violence and to provide supportive and educational services to individuals, families, and the community. PAVE offers a full range of services to victims of domestic and/or sexual violence that include a 24-hour hotline, court and social service advocacy, victim case management, support groups, School-Based Violence Prevention Curricula, a supervised visitation program, community education and outreach, legal assistance, information & referral services, volunteer opportunities, and fundraising opportunities. Volunteers are the lifeblood of this organization, and PAVE is always in need of dedicated individuals.
  • Opportunities: Students can engage through a wide breadth of initiatives, including helping with events such as those around Domestic Violence Awareness Month in October or Sexual Violence Awareness Month in April, assisting PAVE with daily office tasks, teaching educational workshops around conflict resolution skills and violence awareness, becoming an on-call hotline volunteer (requires 20-25 hours of training), and acting as a court advocate for clients requesting a restraining order and release from abuse form.
  • Contact: Sydney Clifford at outreachadvocate@pavebennington.com or (802) 442-2370.
  • Location: 701 Main St, Bennington, VT 05201
  • Public Transportation: GMX from College to 215 Pleasant Street

Food and Housing Support

Bennington County Coalition for the Homeless

  • Description: The Bennington County Coalition for the Homeless was formed in 1997 to meet the needs of low-income families experiencing or facing homelessness. With permanent housing as the primary goal, staff work with families to design and implement a realistic plan for self-sufficiency through life skills education, case management, employment readiness and budget counseling. Serving more than 400 families, women and men annually, BCCH provides emergency and transitional housing for nearly 50 families, women and men at three properties with the goal to increase self-sufficiency, secure permanent housing and treat all with dignity and respect.
  • Opportunities: There are several ways to become involved with BCCH. Currently, the BCCH's biggest need is grant-writing research, though there are a plethora of tasks from fundraising to design work that volunteers could contribute to at the three shelter locations.
  • Contact: Kilpatrick Fellow for Community Engagement Michael Thomson or BCCH Executive Director Chris Oldham at christopher.oldham@bcch-vt.org.
  • Location: 966 Main St., Bennington, Vermont 05201
  • Public Transportation: GMX from College to 215 Pleasant Street

HIS Pantry

  • Description: HIS Pantry is a ministry of Sacred Heart St Francis de Sales parish that serves those in Bennington County and surrounding towns (Hoosick Falls, Williamstown) in need of supplemental food with no proof of income or need required. HIS helps an average of 35 families each day. Each family visits the pantry once a month. Check out our Facebook Page for updates!
  • Opportunities: HIS Pantry needs assistance unloading trucks for deliveries, stocking shelves, organizing shelves, taking inventory, helping guide guests that come for food, and helping raise money for food. Students can also help with preparing food, which entails taking backstock out to the main pantry shelving area or sorting through donated produce. Students could also organize a hunger awareness event or food drive.
  • Contact: Diana Center at hispantryshsf@gmail.com or (802) 442-1720 for more information.
  • Location: 238 Main St., Bennington, VT 05201
  • Public Transportation: GMX from College to 215 Pleasant Street

Kitchen Cupboard

  • Description: The Kitchen Cupboard is a distribution center for the Vermont Foodbank. Local Farmers and stores donate fresh vegetables that are available for guests during open hours on Tuesdays and Saturdays. The Kitchen cupboard is operated by the Greater Bennington Interfaith Council, but has no religious affiliation or requirement. The Kitchen Cupboard's distribution hours are Tuesdays 5:30 pm-8:30 pm and Saturdays 4:00 pm-6:00 pm. Our truck delivery days are the first and third Wednesday of each month at 9:30 am.
  • Opportunities: The Kitchen Cupboard is looking for volunteers to assist with food distributio, stock shelves, and unload trucks on Saturdays and Tuesdays on an as needed basis. In addition, the Kitchen Cupboard regularly hosts the Empty Bowls fundraiser, which runs off of volunteers doing everything from making bowls to serving soup.The Kitchen Cupboard is looking for anyone who wants to make easy, simple, and healthy recipes for clients to sample at the Kitchen Cupboard. This is to encourage healthy food choices for guests. If you are interested in offering samples of healthy recipes, please arrive half an hour before distribution hours on Tuesdays or Saturdays.
  • Contact: Rory Price at roryjprice@gmail.com or Sue Andrews at bennfreeclinic@gmail.com
  • Location: 601 Main Street, Bennington, VT 05201
  • Public Transportation: GMX from College to 215 Pleasant Street

Meals On Wheels

  • Description: Meals on Wheels provides nutritious, high quality meals that support the health and independence of disabled persons in the Bennington area and Bennington residents over 60 years old. The Bennington County Meals Program offers nutritional and social benefits for both the active and home-bound, accomplished through two tiers of meal service: Home Delivery and Community Meal Sites. Meals on Wheels serves about 50,000 meals a year throughout the county. Most meals are home-delivered, but also available at the Café in the Senior Center Monday through Friday from 11:30 am-1:00 pm.
  • Opportunities: Meals on Wheels has a variety of opportunities available for Bennington students: assistance with the afternoon vegetable prep team in preparing donated fruits and vegetables for distribution, updating the MOW website and database, painting the dining room, hosting events, and waiting tables.
  • Contact: MOW Executive Director Ilsa Svoboda at isvoboda@mowbennington.org for more information.
  • Location: 124 Pleasant Street, Bennington, VT 05201
  • Public Transportation: GMX from College to 215 Pleasant Street

United Ways of Vermont-Bennington

  • Description: United Ways of Vermont – Bennington is a local nonprofit that recruits people and organizations that bring the passion, expertise and resources needed to get things done. UWsVT Bennington raises funds within the community to invest in needed initiatives that serve our community in the areas of health, education, and income. UWsVT Bennington also leverages available financial and volunteer resources to have a larger impact in Bennington.
  • Opportunities: There are a variety of engagement opportunities for students. First, UWsVT Bennington provides internship opportunities to gain experience with nonprofit field experience, marketing, fundraising, and human services. Second, UWsVT is in need of assistance in organizing a spring Day of Caring, which will be an annual event that requires volunteer engagement in the planning process throughout the year leading up to the event, pre-event preparations, creative marketing, and a large group of dedicated volunteers to participate in the Day of Caring. Finally, students can assist the Community Investment Committee with their funding requests and other needs.
  • Contact: Kayla Becker at kayla@unitedwaysvt.org or via phone at (802) 681-8469
  • Location: P.O. Box 472, Bennington, VT 05257 (no physical location)

Health Care and Senior Care

The Bennington Free Clinic (BFC)

  • Description: The Bennington Free Clinic is a program of Greater Bennington Interfaith Community Services, Inc. (GBICS) a not-for-profit organization whose purpose is to provide access to food, housing supports, and medical care for low to moderate income families and individuals in the greater Bennington area. The Bennington Free Clinic provides access to primary medical care for low-income uninsured and underinsured Vermont residents who are over the age of 18. The Clinic does not provide emergency care.
  • Opportunities: Students interested in working with BFC can do interpretation work (Spanish, Hindi, and Gujarati needed) for patients, data entry necessary for BFC funding, greet patients and assist them when they enter the BFC, and engage in the BFC’s Oral Health Initiative. Students interested in the Oral Health Initiative would assist in giving presentations on oral health in local schools and in conducting local grassroots surveys around issues of oral health.
  • Contact: Sue Andrews at bennfreeclinic@gmail.com or (802) 447-3700
  • Location: 601 Main Street, PO Box 702, Bennington, VT 05201
  • Public Transportation: GMX from College to 215 Pleasant Street

Bennington Project Independence

  • Description: Bennington Project Independence is a not-for-profit agency that provides comprehensive, cost-effective adult day services for adults over age 18 who face challenges associated with aging and/or disability. BPI’s mission is to encourage the vitality, health and well-being of older or disabled adults in enabling them to continue residing at home while supporting and providing respite to their families and caregivers
  • Opportunities: There is a broad array of opportunities at BPI: assist the art therapist with activities and make sure art therapy workshops run smoothly, conduct life surveys with residents, play games, help out with miscellaneous activities, offer administrative help in marketing, and computer work.
  • Contact: Shelagh Muckle at activities@bpiads.org to set up a visit and info session. This visit will help Tracy shape students’ involvement to their skill sets and desires.
  • Location: 614 Harwood Hill, P.O. Box 1504, Bennington, VT 05201

Turning Point Center

  • Description: Turning Point's mission is to help people find, maintain, and enhance their recovery experience through peer support and substance free recreational and educational opportunities.
  • Opportunities: Turning Point is seeking a psychology student intern to assist with managerial tasks with the option of conducting research. Students can also assist with events, clerical work, and manual labor tasks for maintenance of the office and buildings. If possible, volunteers should have a personal connection to addiction or substance abuse, either as a recovering addict or as an individual affected by a loved one's addiction. In addition, Turning Point's doors and resources are open to any student in recovery or thinking about recovery.
  • Contact: Turning Point Director Ken Sigsbury at lanwop@comcast.net
  • Location: 465 Main Street, Bennington, VT 05201
  • Public Transportation: GMX from College to 215 Pleasant Street

Vermont Veterans Home

  • Description: The VVH offers a complete range of specialized care services for its residents. VVH’s goals focus on ensuring the dignity, independence, and the highest possible care and quality of life for each resident.
  • Opportunities: VVH is seeking individuals interested in assisting with weekly shopping trips, bingo, off-campus events, weekly in-house calendar events, and much more. Trained by the Activities Department, volunteers are considered as “force multipliers.” If you have a skill or talent that you would like to teach or entertain veterans with, you are more than welcome to bring it to them.
  • Contact: Michele Burgess at michele.burgess@state.vt.us or (802) 447-6520
  • Location: 325 North St, Bennington, VT 05201
  • Public Transportation: GMX from College to 215 Pleasant Street

VNA and Hospice of SVMC

  • Description: VNA and Hospice of SVMC is the only VNA & Hospice in Vermont fully connected with a hospital system and offering comprehensive home health and hospice care. Staff and volunteers at VNA & Hospice make more than 30,000 visits each year to residents of Bennington, North Bennington, Pownal, Shaftsbury, and Woodford. Services are available 24/7. The Home Health Care Team is available to meet care needs where people live, whether recovering from surgery, having just had a child, or requiring long-term assistance. The hospice team works with individuals and their families as people go through the end stages of life, providing a full range of nursing, medical, spiritual, and support services. Anyone with a diagnosis of a life-threatening illness and a prognosis of six months or less to live, along with these individuals' family members, can benefit from the services provided by hospice care.
  • Opportunities: Our hospice volunteers provide companionship and respite to our hospice, palliative care and pediatric palliative care patients and families. We are always looking for more hospice volunteers. Let us know if you are able to commit to our current nine-week training. For those who cannot commit to the longer training, there will be an optional, condensed version.
  • Contact: Mary Pleasant at marypl@ravnah.org or (802) 442-0540
  • Location: 1128 Monument Avenue, Bennington VT
  • Public Transportation: GMX from College to Southwestern Vermont Medical Center (1 transfer)
    • Monday–Friday: Brown Line from College to 215 Pleasant Street, Blue Line from 215 Pleasant Street to Southwestern Vermont Medical Center
    • Saturday: Light Green Line from College to 215 Pleasant Street, Green Line from 215 Pleasant Street to Southwestern Vermont Medical Center

Mentoring/Education

Bart Adaptive Sports Center

  • Description: The Bart J. Ruggiere Adaptive Sports Center is a nonprofit 501c (3) organization that provides individuals with disabilities and their families the opportunity to enjoy outdoor sports in a fun, safe and supportive environment.  We believe that participation in outdoor sports involves building skills, making social connections and sharing experiences of achievement that all act to empower the individual beyond the boundaries typically associated with their disability resulting in increased self-esteem, self-determination and community involvement.   The Bart J. Ruggiere Adaptive Sports Center (or more commonly, “Bart Adaptive Sports”) heavily relies upon the generous donation of time and energy by volunteers, contributions from individuals, foundations and businesses, and technical expertise from its highly accredited staff. The Bart Adaptive Sports Winter Program (skiing, snowboarding and snowshoeing) is located at Bromley Mountain Ski Resort in Peru, VT.  The Summer Program uses a number of locations in Southern Vermont for its various outdoor sport activities (hiking, cycling and paddling).
  • Opportunities: The opportunities could range from being a ski/ snowboard instructor helping people learn a lifelong sport, helping on different events like Wounded Military Hero’s weekend, wine and cheese to an internship or work study were you will participate in all aspects of running a nonprofit.
  • Contact: Joe Hurley at director@bartadaptive.org for more information or call (802) 824-6849
  • Location: Bromley Ski Resort 144 Bromley Lodge Rd. Peru VT 05152, Bart adaptive Sports P.O. Box 2232 Manchester Ctr. VT 05255

Bennington Free Library

  • Description: It is the Bennington Free Library’s aim to stimulate use of its collections by informing the public of the resources available, providing guidance in their use, providing free access to a wide range of opinions and ideas, developing collections and services in response to community needs, and cooperating with community organizations in stimulating educational and cultural activities. The BFL aims to provide a dynamic library program that will advertise our services, attract non-users, and provide for and promote reading and self-development throughout the community.
  • Opportunities: The BFL has a variety of opportunities including clerical duties and general assistance in the BFL’s Children's Room, as well as clerical duties and assistance with book sales with the BFL Reference Librarian.
  • Contact: Linda Donigan at ljd@bfli.org for more information regarding the Children’s Rooms opportunities and Diana Leazer at admin@bfli.org for other engagement opportunities.
  • Location: 101 Silver Street, Bennington, VT 05201
  • Public Transportation: GMX from College to 215 Pleasant Street

Big Brothers Big Sisters

  • Description: Big Brothers Big Sisters helps children who need and want a mentor. Through the personal growth and guidance of a professionally supported, one-to-one relationship, children develop self-confidence and assurance. Big Brothers Big Sisters needs mentors for children aged 5-14. Mentoring provides children with the single greatest advantage they need to grow up successfully: friendship with a caring adult, and has been shown to reduce the risk of alcohol and drug use, academic struggles and dropping out of school.
  • Opportunities: Lunch Time Mentoring or Community Mentoring are both options. A lunch time mentor will will spend one hour a week with their mentee during lunch and recess at the student's school. A community mentor will schedule and plan meetings with their mentee outside of school hours and in the community. We look for one hour a week between mentor and mentee and a one year commitment to the program.
  • Contact: Lorianna Weathers lorianna.seedlingsprogramvt@gmail.com
  • Location: 100 Ledge Hill Drive, Bennington, VT 05201
  • Public Transportation: GMX from College to 215 Pleasant Street

Head Start

  • Description: Bennington County Head Start offers preschool children and their families the building blocks for learning and parenting. BCHS provides early education classes promoting school readiness, and family opportunities and support to strengthen families for Bennington County residents. Beginning in Fall 2017 Head Start will expand to Early Head Start and serve children ages six weeks to five years. Head Start children between the ages of three and five may enroll if their families meet federal income guidelines. All services are free for eligible families. Head Start offers services designed to meet each child's and family's specific needs in a safe setting.
  • Opportunities: Opportunities include reading to children, classroom activities, work-study jobs, and flexible special projects related to particular skill-sets.
  • Contact: Beth Wallace at bwallace@ucsvt.org for more information.
  • Location: 2 Park Street, North Bennington, VT 05257

McCullough Free Library

  • Description: The John G. McCullough Library is an essential community center: a comfortable and welcoming place where people of all ages can satisfy their curiosity, stimulate their imaginations, become informed citizens and connect to the online world. The McCullough Free Library offers free membership to patrons of all ages without residency restrictions; our users include residents of other states who work nearby, as well as seasonal residents.
  • Opportunities: They are looking for folks who would be willing to learn our online catalog and digital books platforms well enough to help and tutor members of our community access these materials. Jennie will interview potential volunteers to find out what their interests and strengths are instead of assigning tasks. For example, if someone was really into graphic design, creating posters for events would be a huge benefit. If someone was really into working with kids, they could help out in the Children’s Room.
  • Contact: Jennie Rozycki, Library Director mclibrary@comcast.net, Library Facebook Page, Library Website
  • Location: 2 Main Street, P.O. Box 339, North Bennington, VT 05257

Seedlings

  • Description: The Seedlings Program provides a nurturing afterschool environment for children living in poverty in Bennington County. The program is multi-year, working with students entering the first grade through their transition into middle school. Seedling’s provides consistent programming to build academic skill and social skills, creativity and resiliency through one-on-one academic tutoring, enrichment activities to explore and enhance creativity and opportunities to observe and practice appropriate behaviors. We strive to build community awareness and support around the issues of childhood poverty in Bennington. Our goals are to increase self-confidence and habits associated with academic and life success through consistent, one-on-one interactions with adult volunteers (this could be you) by being fun, nurturing and supportive, children choose to engage in the program.
  • Opportunities: We work in local elementary schools, currently at Bennington Elementary and Molly Stark on Monday, Tuesday, and Thursdays from 3:00 – 4:30. Our volunteers arrive at the elementary school (Molly Stark or Ben El) and set out the supplemental snacks for the 8 children in each pod. After snack, half of the students go with a private tutor for thirty minutes. During that time the remaining 4 students have three choices of activities to engage in. We have many different activities available, but often times our volunteers enjoy bringing in special games or crafts for the children. After the thirty minutes are up the students being tutored come back for activities and the remaining students leave for their turn with the tutors. The program last an hour and a half and we ask volunteers to commit to only one of the three days available.
  • Contact: Lorianna Weathers lorianna.seedlingsprogramvt@gmail.com
  • Location: 128 Park St, Bennington, VT 05201
  • Public Transportation: GMX from College to 215 Pleasant Street

Sunrise Family Resource Center

  • Description: Sunrise Family Resource Center is a social services agency and member of the Vermont Parent Child Center Network offering services and support in childcare, secondary education, case management, advocacy and intensive home-based supports, resources and referrals for childcare providers, employment counseling and parenting education. A staff of 30 teachers, home visitors, case managers, mentors and coaches supports over 800 families in Bennington County annually as they work toward independence and resilience.
  • Opportunities: Sunrise has a number of internships available for students. For those interested in assisting with job training and vocational skills, Sunrise has an on-site job club program. If you would like to assist families in need, there are a variety of programs oriented toward young children, adolescents, and adults providing child care, youth development, and family development. These engagement opportunities are only available during Sunrise's open hours Monday-Friday from 8:30 am-4:00 pm.
  • Contact: Denise Main at dmain@sunrisepcc.com or (802) 442-0011
  • Location: 244 Union Street, Bennington VT 05201

United Counseling Service

    • Description: UCS provides Bennington County with nationally recognized community-based services for children, adults, families, and seniors through nationally recognized counseling, early care and education and clinical support. UCS offers many opportunities to work with a diverse population from preschool children through the Head Start program (work-study jobs available), a grade school child through Big Brothers Big Sisters, teens through programs that work with older children with behavioral and emotional difficulties, and adults with developmental disabilities.
    • Opportunities: Once you decide where you want to be, you will have a brief meeting with the appropriate program director, who will talk with you about the work, ask how you would like to participate, and match you closely to the right children or adults.
    • Contact: Big Brothers Big Sisters Coordinator is Allison Meyer at ameyer@ucsvt.org or (802) 442-5491 (x281)
    • Location: 100 Ledge Hill Drive, Bennington, VT 05201
    • Public Transportation: GMX from College to 215 Pleasant Street

    Village School of North Bennington

    • Description: The Village School of North Bennington is a pre-K-through Grade six independent school serving approximately 130 students, nearly all from the surrounding school district, which includes North Bennington and part of Shaftsbury. The VSNB depends on parents and community members who support it and help it thrive as a hub for growth and learning.
    • Opportunities: Students could engage as volunteers with Four Winds Nature Program, reading partners to spend a little time each week with students who need assistance, Cross-Country Ski Program instructors/aids, after-school tutors/mentors to help students with homework, administrative support (helping with mailings, data entry, etc.), and helping with PTO activities and fundraisers. If you’d like to participate in one of the listed activities, or have an interest beyond what’s listed here, you are welcome to see if it’s something that can be worked into the school program. Also, there is a program that welcomes advanced-level Bennington students of Spanish, French, or Chinese to teach those languages at the VSNB (pre-K through grade eight).
    • Contact: Email info@vsnb.org regarding all engagement opportunities.
    • Location: 9 School St., N. Bennington, VT 05257

    Public Services

    Bennington Rutland Opportunity Council (BROC)

    • Description: BROC-Community Action in Southwestern Vermont is committed to empower, support and educate individuals and families to be self-sufficient in their employment, homes and communities. BROC assists with family stabilization and development, education, training and job creation, affordable housing and expansion of community awareness and advocacy in a nurturing environment of respect and dignity.
    • Opportunities: BROC provides opportunities to assist with fund raising and micro-business client mentoring.
    • Contact: Pamela Shambo at pshambo@broc.org or (802) 447-7515
    • Location: 332 Orchard Road, Bennington, VT 05201
    • Public Transportation: GMX from College to CVS Pharmacy (request stop)

    Shaftsbury Fire Department

    • Description: Shaftsbury Fire Department's volunteer firefighters are an integral part of the Shaftsbury community. The department has over 25 volunteer firefighters that are on-call 24/7. Volunteer firefighters in the Shaftsbury Fire Department are well-equipped for a career as a firefighter, in addition to gaining valuable skills and providing an essential service to their community.
    • Opportunities: Students interested in joining the Shaftsbury Fire Department must undergo a rigorous yet rewarding process of training, which includes 120 hours of Fire School training. You must have readily available transportation to join.
    • Contact: Joe Vadakin at jvadakin@bennington.edu or 802-442-7307.
    • Location: 166 Buck Hill Rd., Shaftsbury, VT 05262