HOPE


AFTER FIVE YEARS of coordinating and bolstering food programs for Middlebury-based Helping Overcome Poverty’s Effects, Lily Bradburn is taking a job as Community Health Program manager for the Vermont Youth Conservation Corps.
MIDDLEBURY — The nonprofit Helping Overcome Poverty’s Effects (HOPE) is bidding farewell to its first-ever local food access coordinator, Lily Bradburn, who’s been instrumental in the success of the organization’s food shelf and gleaning efforts that sustain many hundreds of hungry Addison County residents each year. Bradburn recently announced her departure in order to become Community Health Program manager for the Vermont Youth Conservation Corps. (VYCC). After five years with Middlebury-based HOPE, Bradburn was keen on moving to the Chittenden County area. “I’m thrilled to be able to join...

A WORKER AT HOPE proudly shows off a huge cache of food that the Addison County food shelf recently received from Middlebury College.
MIDDLEBURY — Officials at the organization Helping Overcome Poverty’s Effects, or HOPE, are giving thanks for literally a ton of food. As Middlebury College welcomed students back to campus late last month, the college’s food service prepared healthy packages of nonperishable snacks for quarantined students. As the quarantine period wound down this month, students noticed there were plenty of unopened snacks still around. Through a concerted student effort, 2,550 pounds of food was collected, and the Center for Community Engagement delivered this bounty to the HOPE food shelf off Boardman...

EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR OF HOPE Jeanne Montross accepts a big check from the Town Hall Theater’s Holiday Jukebox fundraiser. The event raised $2,690 for Addison County Food Shelf at HOPE. Debby Anderson created the giant check. Photo / Cindi Duff
Holiday Jukebox raised $2,690 for Addison County Food Shelf at HOPE Everyone faced challenges in 2020, and Middlebury’s Town Hall Theater is no exception. Closed to the public since March, the staff has had to literally think outside of the box. The happy result has been a series of online events that have exceeded everyone’s expectations. “We resisted going online at first,” said THT artistic director Douglas Anderson,” but once we took the leap we realized that online videos can reach a very large audience — in fact, they can reach across the country, and around the world.”  THT’s recent...

THE BENGSONS, CLINT & Ty Bierman, The Middlebury Congregational Church Choir, and Francois Clemmons are on the Holiday Jukebox lineup this season. Town Hall Theater will stream local music live, Dec. 24-26. Tickets are $10 per household, with proceeds benefitting the Addison County Food Shelf at HOPE.
Christmas means music — choirs in churches, carolers on the street, performances in theaters. But due to the pandemic, we’re facing a season in which musicians, and their music, are stuck indoors and socially distant from one and other, as well as from appreciative audiences. The people at Town Hall Theater have cooked up a solution. They’ve gathered together videos of the area’s most popular musicians under the title Holiday Jukebox, which will be streaming online beginning Dec. 24. The ticket price is $10 per household, with the proceeds benefitting the Addison County Food Shelf at the...
On Monday, Nov. 25, 1963, all federal agencies and departments in the United States were closed. For four days, all of the commercial television networks suspended their regular programming for the first time in television history. Many schools, offices, stores, entertainment venues, and factories closed down, and those that remained open held a minute of silence. The reason? Our entire country was observing a national day of mourning proclaimed by President Johnson, following the assassination of President John F. Kennedy. In the United States, official days of mourning are proclaimed by a...

KATE SELBY, COORDINATOR of Helping Overcome Poverty’s Effects’ (HOPE) Holiday Shop, displays some of the Christmas gifts that will be distributed free to area low-income families. The Holiday Shop has been accepting online contributions during the COVID-19 pandemic. Photo courtesy of Jeanne Montross
MIDDLEBURY — Just when it appeared that COVID-19 might play the role of the Grinch that stole Christmas from low-income families, Helping Overcome Poverty’s Effects (HOPE) has creatively ensured that its Holiday Shop will stay in business to distribute free toys, games and clothing. While the organization isn’t allowing families to browse in its Holiday Shop at 282 Boardman St. this year, it’s taking the operation online to give donors and recipients the opportunity to do their parts to make a better Christmas for local kids. Jeanne Montross, executive director of HOPE, had been concerned...
MIDDLEBURY — COVID-19 will try to impersonate the Grinch during the upcoming holiday season, but the nonprofit organization Helping Overcome Poverty’s Effects (HOPE) is committed to providing free Christmas treats to children in low-income households even though the pandemic is forcing it to suspend its seasonal gift shop. HOPE has historically hosted the holiday gift shop at its headquarters at 282 Boardman St. in Middlebury. Coordinated by Kate Selby and staffed by several tireless volunteers, the shop has received, sorted and displayed a myriad of gift options for children up to age 18 who...
MIDDLEBURY — Folks at Helping Overcome Poverty’s Effects (HOPE), the Middlebury nonprofit social services agency, are searching for a person who made a bigger donation than was intended. Officials said the person unwittingly left what they are describing as a “large sum of money” in a donated item dropped off at the poverty-fighting organization around two weeks ago. If anyone is missing a large amount of money and might have recently donated an item to HOPE at its 282 Boardman St. headquarters in Middlebury, please contact Jeanne Montross at 388-3608.  
MIDDLEBURY — Helping Overcome Poverty’s Effects (HOPE) has temporarily relaxed the eligibility standards for its free food and other charitable services, in recognition of the economic pain many Addison County families are experiencing during the COVID-19 pandemic. The Middlebury-based nonprofit is now serving households earning 250% of the federal poverty line, which translates to $3,592 a month for a two-person household and $5,458 for a family of four. Until around two weeks ago, HOPE was serving locals earning no more than 185 percent of the federal poverty guideline. HOPE operates a well...

LILY BRADBURN, LOCAL food access coordinator for the non-profit Helping Overcome Poverty’s Effects, deliveries a box of food to a person whose reserves are running low. HOPE has been limiting traffic to its Middlebury food shelf in response to COVID-19 social distancing guidelines. Photo courtesy of Jeanne Montross
MIDDLEBURY — The Middlebury-based non-profit Helping Overcome Poverty’s Effects (HOPE) is also adjusting to life during the COVID-19 pandemic. The organization, which offers food, clothing and financial assistance to area people in need, is currently operating its food shelf via phone orders. People call up to specify their needs, then pick up their food outside HOPE’s Boardman Street headquarters the next day. “We are still providing food to schools, so families with little or no resources can have something to eat,” HOPE Executive Director Jeanne Montross added through an email. “...

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Addison County Independent