Kuerig Green Mtn staff prepare children's literacy kits


We can’t do it alone.  We need the heads, hands and hearts of committed people like you to help us tackle the problems facing our communities. Each of us has special talents, things we can do to help. Put your talents to work to help our community!  There are listings for assistance needed in local schools, meal sites, libraries, senior centers and much more.  It’s a win/win situation for the volunteer and the organization receiving their service.

Check out volunteer opportunities

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Physical Activity and Nutrition Program Quarterly News – Winter 2016


News from the Physical Activity and Nutrition Program

It is hard to believe that we are well into 2016 already. Many people have made resolutions for healthier living as the year starts and are now working on maintaining that good behavior from the first few days of the year. We are encouraging people to become more physically active through walking. This newsletter is full of ideas for your staff, students and you.

Best wishes for a healthy and active 2016!


Sue Kamp
Physical Activity and Nutrition Program Administrator

Healthy Communities


Winter Walking
Winter is here and, unless you are a true winter sports enthusiast, this can be the most difficult time to begin or maintain a regular exercise routine. Many people walk for their physical activity. Here are some tips  that can help you maintain through the winter months.
Save the dates!
America Walks, the only national organization devoted exclusively to making America a great place to walk, has posted their 2016 Webinar Series here. Join them on the second Thursday of each month as topics, questions and resources that are critical to building the walking movement are explored. Topics are arranged around the following themes: Tools for the Field, the Call to Action in Action, Expanding the Movement, and Walking is for Everyone.


Fifth Grade Passport

Skiing and riding are magical sports that can change lives, supporting healthier decisions and experiences that can last a lifetime. There is no better time to fall in love with snow-covered mountains of Vermont than during the final years of care-free childhood. To help our youth get to the hills, Ski Vermont offers participating fifth graders up to 88 free days of skiing and riding at Vermont’s alpine and nordic resorts with the Fifth Grade Passport. Apply for a Passport today!



Healthy Schools Resources


CDC’s Healthy Schools program just launched the Learning Series:



2016 Worksite Wellness Conference

Wednesday, March 30, 2016
Registration for the 2016 Worksite Wellness Conference is open! The conference will take place on Wednesday, March 30, 2016 at the Sheraton Hotel in South Burlington, VT. We are honored to have Dr. David Katz, founding director of Yale University’s Prevention Research Center and internationally recognized expert in chronic disease prevention, as our keynote speaker at this year’s conference. The day will be filled with workshops, fitness breaks, best practices sharing round table, and a presentation of the 2015 Worksite Wellness awards. The Conference is an excellent opportunity for employers, human resource professionals, employees, and others interested in worksite wellness.  Register online before March 16th, 2016.


Worksite Wellness Initiatives
This month, seven worksites across the state are kicking off worksite wellness initiatives with funding from the Vermont Department of Health to improve the health of their employees. These worksites are developing nutrition and physical activity interventions including policies and programs to promote healthy eating and an active lifestyle. On average, working adults spend at least half of their waking hours at work, placing workplaces in an integral role to support and improve health outcomes. Worksite wellness programs also have positive financial outcomes, helping employers manage and reduce the cost of health care and improve productivity. For more information, please visit our worksite wellness page.

Clinical News

Helping Yourself to Health

The Vermont Department of Health, the Greater Burlington YMCA, and the Vermont Blueprint for Health have joined together to create MyHealthyVT, a new website for Vermonters seeking self-help for diabetes prevention and management, quitting smoking, emotional wellness, chronic disease management, and chronic pain management. The new site provides “one stop shopping” for free self-management programs. Vermonters can find contact information for their local Regional Coordinators at the site to sign up for programs. Motivational videos of real Vermonters’ success stories and links to related resources are also available.

The new site was featured on a recent episode of Across the Fence that addressed resources and programs for diabetes prevention and management.
In This Issue


Upcoming events

Worksite Wellness Conference
March 30, 2016
Burlington, Vermont

Check out our website  My Moment


Vermont Department of Health: Physical Activity and Nutrition | Susan.Kamp@vermont.gov | http://www.healthvermont.gov
108 Cherry Street
Suite 203
Burlington, VT 05401
Vermont Department of Health: Physical Activity and Nutrition, 108 Cherry Street, Suite 203, Burlington, VT 05401


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GMUW Leads Tatum’s Totes Effort

In summer 2015, a game-changing project for children who are headed for foster care was begun by a couple in Rutland, Elizabeth and Alex Grimes.  They named it Tatum’s Totes after their 5-month old son, Tatum, who died suddenly of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome.  It was a devastating loss to the whole family, but just two months later Elizabeth’s decision for them to become licensed foster parents was what turned that devastation around.  Along with that, her creation of the Tatum’s Totes project is bringing hope to foster children throughout Rutland County that has also spilled over into Addison, Windham and Bennington Counties.

Green Mountain United Way (GMUW) is now in partnership with Tatum’s Totes to also bring this program to children in Washington Co. and now to Newport.  We are collecting new backpacks and children’s items to be bagged and ready to be donated to any child moving to a foster family and dealing with this sudden transition.  Pam Bailey of GMUW is working closely with the State of VT Dept. of Children and Families (DCF) to identify the children and to make sure that backpacks (or Tatum’s Totes) are ready to go at a moment’s notice.

“Every day children enter foster care with absolutely nothing or little to nothing. These children deserve more than that. The plan is to help make this transition as easy as possible for them. GMUW can help bring this amazing program to the Barre DCF District and now to the Newport are DCF District,” says Pam Bailey.

Many times, children and teenagers moving to foster care arrive with only the clothes on their backs and no other possessions.  Having a Tatum’s Tote filled with basic clothing, hygiene items, a game, book and a blanket or stuffed animal for security can make it a much more positive move.  There are nearly 1,400 children currently in state custody yet only about 1,200 licensed foster families.  Nationally, there are approximately 300,000 children in foster care and almost half of those wait three years or more before being adopted, meaning that those years are spent bouncing from foster home to foster home.

The backpacks will include such items as blankets, books, toothbrushes and toothpaste, coloring books and crayons, stuffed animals, shampoo, socks, hats, mittens and games.  A full list of suggested items are listed below and are kept updated on a monthly basis or you can get more information by calling Pam at 802-613-3989 or emailing her at pbailey@gmunitedway.org. Please show “Tatum’s Totes Project” in the subject line.  Monetary donations clearly marked for this project, payable to GMUW, are also encouraged.

Suggested Items Needed for Tatum’s Totes (updated 10/7/16):

Items should be new and should be able to fit into a backpack.

Teen Boy & Girls – Items we are currently in need of:  

  • Boy’s Backpacks
  • Teen Boy’s Personal Hygiene Items: Body wash, Axe body wash and spray, Deodorant, Lotion, Toothpaste, Toothbrushes, Combs, Hair brushes, Shampoo & Conditioner
  • Teen Boy’s Items: Card games, Notebooks/Journal, Pens, Water Bottles
  • Teen Girls: Water Bottles
  • Teen Boy and Girl blankets

Items for young children:

  • Jumbo Crayons
  • Kids toothpaste
  • Diaper Bags (both boys and girls)
  • Water Bottles
  • Baby Bottles

General Items needed on an ongoing basis:

Baby & Children’s Items: Baby and toddler books, Baby blankets, Baby onesies, Baby toys, Backpacks, Baseball caps, Blankets, Board games, Body wash, Children’s books, Children’s toothbrushes, Children’s toys (dolls, trucks, etc.), Colored pencils, Coloring books, Crayons, Diaper bags, Diapers, Drawing pads, Flashlights, Growth charts, Hair bows, Hair brushes, Markers, Mittens, Night lights, Shampoo and conditioner, Sippy cups, Slippers, Socks, Stuffed animals, Toothpaste, Winter hats

Teenage Items:  Axe body wash and spray, Backpacks, Body wash, Card games, Deck of cards, Deodorant, Fleece blankets, Hair brushes, Hairspray, Journal/Notebook, Lotion, Makeup, Nail polish, Pen, Ponytail holders, Shampoo and conditioner, Slippers, Socks, Toothbrushes, Toothpaste, Wallets/purses, Walmart gift cards, Water bottles


IMG_6755 PamB(1)

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Do People Listen To You?


Screen Shot 2016-02-04 at 1.17.42 PM


Do People Listen To You? 

Attend a free session of the
Impactful Leadership Through Strategic Presentations Program
and be a more compelling presenter.

Impactful Leadership Through Strategic Presentations
Free Preview Session

Thursday, February 11

8:30AM – 12:00PM

Windjammer Conference Center

1076 Williston Road, So. Burlington, VT



There is absolutely no obligation!  You will be our guest.

This will be the first 3.5 hours of the actual 2-day program, so you will be experiencing the real thing.




Seating is limited and we will close the offer once capacity is reached.  So reserve your seat now by
clicking here.



By attending this free session you will have an opportunity to:

  • observe and assess your current presentation skills
  • make immediate improvements in your presentations
  • create a vision of what kind of presenter you’d like to become
  • learn how audiences judge presenters
  • create a more powerful ‘Platform Presence’
  • obtain tips on the effective use of ‘Powerpoint’


Click here to reserve a seat.


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Registration For The Annual Worksite Wellness Conference 2016 Is Now Open!

 Registration for the annual Worksite Wellness Conference, to be held on Wednesday March 30th 2016 at the Sheraton Hotel and Conference Center in Burlington, is now open!


Ashwinee.Kulkarni@vermont.gov with any questions.

We look forward to seeing you at the conference!


 Ashwinee Kulkarni

Public Health Specialist \
(802) 859-5916

Vermont Department of Health

Health Promotion and Disease Prevention

108 Cherry Street

Burlington, VT 05401


Please note that my email address has changed to

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Local USDA Office Makes Literacy Kits for GMUW

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(Photo #12507277 – Two Volunteers from Montpelier USDA office with Pam Bailey (back) of GMUW)

On January 21st, about a dozen employees of the Montpelier U. S. Dept. of Agriculture office volunteered to spend part of a day making children’s literacy kits for Green Mountain United Way. These kits are designed for children in daycare centers and preschools to enhance their reading abilities and better prepare them for Kindergarten and subsequent learning years.

The folks at USDA made 16 kits that day. After acquiring several suggested age-appropriate books, each volunteer made colorful hands-on items from craft materials relating to the story in the books that children can hold and play with while being read to, thus engaging them in the reading process.

These kits will be distributed to the Orange County Parent Child Center in Tunbridge, an organization that also recently received a grant from USDA. This is a good example of true collaboration between agencies with Green Mountain United Way, USDA and the Orange County Parent Child Center working together for the benefit of children.

USDA Rural Development staff is dedicated to assisting rural Vermont communities through its housing, business and community programs. Their mission is to increase economic opportunity and improve the quality of life for all rural Americans. Rural Development’s Vermont and New Hampshire State Office is located in Montpelier, with Vermont Area Offices located in St. Johnsbury and Brattleboro.

For more information about the GMUW Early Learning initiatives, contact their Barre office at
802-622-8056 or visit them at www.gmunitedway.org.

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Why Don’t We Screen Everyone For All Cancers?


Healthy Living
February 2016
Diet, exercise, smoking, and other
lifestyle choices you make all impact your overall health and your risk for cancer.
To help you stay well, the American Cancer Society offers the Healthy Living Newsletter,
a monthly email with useful information on eating right, staying active, and other
steps you can take to help reduce your cancer risk.  |  Español

Get more sleep

to Get More Sleep

Millions of Americans have trouble
falling asleep or staying asleep at night. Follow
our tips
to help you beat insomnia and get the restful sleep you need.

Exericse at home

in Exercise at Home

Getting regular physical exercise
is important for getting and staying healthy. We’ll show you some simple
you can take to fit more activity into your day.



chocolate have health benefits?

We wish the answer
were yes! But it’s actually a bit more complicated than that. Learn
what the science tells us about chocolate and whether it’s good for you.


White bean and spinach soup

White Bean and Spinach Soup

Our White
Bean and Spinach Soup
is high in fiber and loaded with vitamins and minerals.
It’s also a delicious way to warm up on a cold winter day.

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GMUW Key Leader in Promise Community

Green Mountain United Way: Newsletter


Green Mountain
United Way


From the Executive Director

Tawnya Kristen

Dear Friends-

January was filled with an array of work for our communities, including our continuing participation in both the Barre and St. Johnsbury Vermont Promise Community. The Promise Community is a collaborative effort to support children and families in seven selected Vermont communities and is modeled after the Harlem Children’s Zone. Each designated community is tasked with creating a successful program that prepares children for school by bringing together local representatives from education, health care, social services, private and public sectors, as well as parents and community members in efforts to address the challenges in early child educational preparedness.

In addition to compiling and reviewing area data, both Barre and St. Johnsbury committees are doing targeted outreach through community meals and other events to receive feedback on areas of need and to help further the development of a comprehensive plan unique to the area. Once completed, each community plan will then be eligible for a portion of the $200,000 grant money available for second year implementation. Funding for the Vermont initiative comes from the state’s Early Learning Challenge – Race to the Top federal grant.

Being a part of this collaborative initiative in two of our five service counties continues to be a unique opportunity for GMUW to rapidly address the educational needs of our children through the unification of community and resources. We are honored to be a key leader in this effort and encourage each of you to learn more about this work. http://dcf.vermont.gov/cdd/promise-communities

For more information on how you can participate in either the Barre or St. Johnsbury Promise Community events, please feel free to contact me directly.

Thank you as always for your support and belief in living united.

Warm regards,

Barre Promise

Hooray!! Our Campaign Surpasses Halfway Mark

As of last week, our fundraising reached $317,084 toward our goal of $550,000 and we still have three months to go before closing the campaign for this year.

We so appreciate all of you who have already pledged or donated whether in a big way or a small way. Every amount makes a difference and we could not possibly provide the programs and services to the people of Caledonia, Essex, Orange, Orleans and Washington Counties that we do now without your help. With your support we can continue to provide children’s literacy kits and other early learning programs. We are able to focus on even more financial literacy workshops for those wanting to become more financially stable, and more people can access healthy living information for themselves and their families.

If you have not yet made your contribution, take a moment now and write your check to GMUW and send it to 1 Conti Circle, Unit 3, Barre, VT 05641, or go to www.gmunitedway.org and donate online where you can now make recurring donations (e.g. weekly, monthly, quarterly, etc.).

If you have any questions, please call any one of our offices in Barre at 802-622-8056, in St. Johnsbury at 802-745-0101 or in Derby Line at 802-647-2148.

Don’t Forget to File for EITC

Tax season is now upon us and although many of us dread having to prepare and submit our annual taxes, there are some advantages to doing so, one of them being the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC). Green Mountain United Way (GMUW) encourages taxpayers to find out if they are eligible for this credit and to make sure to file for it in order to receive money that is due them. The 1040-EZ form does not ask the necessary question regarding EITC, so be sure to file the long form.

EITC is a federally-funded program that rewards people for working. It is a way for many to not only reduce their debt but to start and/or increase savings. The following list gives the amounts of maximum earned income in order to qualify for EITC:

  • $14,820 single, head of household or widowed (or $20,330 married filing jointly) with no qualifying children or,
  • $39,131 ($44,651 married filing jointly) with one qualifying child or,
  • $44,454 ($49,974 married filing jointly) with two qualifying children or,
  • $47,747 ($53,267 married filing jointly) with three or more qualifying children.

The 2015 tax year maximum credits are:

  • $503 with no qualifying children,
  • $3,359 with one qualifying child,
  • $5,548 with two qualifying children,
  • $6,242 with three or more qualifying children.

There is a limit on the amount of investment income (such as interest) that you can have. Your filing status cannot be married filing separately.

GMUW in concerned with the financial stability of the people in its five county region and the EITC is one way of increasing income and becoming more financially stable. Last year, 44,000 EITC claims were submitted by Vermonters bringing 85 million dollars back into our VT economy. Unfortunately, approximately 20% of eligible Vermont taxpayers do not claim EITC.

In addition, those who qualify for EITC also qualify for free tax return preparation at a VITA site (Volunteer Income Tax Assistance), 3Squares Vermont and other benefits. Vermont 2-1-1, a free statewide referral service operated by the United Ways of VT, will refer taxpayers to their nearest location where they can access these benefits.

For more information, please visit www.gmunitedway.org/our-work/income/ or call any one of the GMUW offices at 802-622-8056 in Barre, 802-745-0101 in St. Johnsbury, or 802-647-2148 in Derby Line.

Feb. 22 to 27 – America Saves Week

America Saves Logo

The last week of February each year has been designated as America Saves Week and we invite you to visit www.americasaves.org for some great tips on how to save more money toward better financial stability. Sign up for their regular newsletters that contain vital information that you can use.

There’s a saying used by many financial advisers: “Pay yourself first.” Many people are convinced that there is no way they can save any money because after having paid their bills, there is nothing left. However, there are easy methods that anyone can apply to start saving, even small amounts. For example:

  • We all love our coffee or a can of soda every day. Make a commitment to yourself to have one of those beverages only every other day, or fewer each day, and be sure to take that money and put it aside;
  • For you smokers who are thinking of quitting, reduce the amount of cigarettes you smoke and put the cost of one pack in a savings account each week;
  • At the end of each day, take the loose change in your pocket or in the bottom of your pocketbook and throw it in a jar. You’ll be surprised how much you’ve collected in a year’s time;
  • When you receive your income tax refund this year, don’t go out and blow it. Start an emergency savings account for when hardship strikes your family, and you’ll have money available to pay your everyday expenses until better times return;
  • When paying on your mortgage, put a little extra toward the principal each month. You’ll be pleasantly surprised when your mortgage gets paid off a little sooner than originally planned.

These are just a few ways you can save and reach financial success for yourself and your family. We’re sure you can find many other creative ways to set money aside. You’ll be happy you did.

For more information about how to become financially stable or to participate in one of our financial literacy workshops, contact our staff member, Nelson Baker, at nbaker@gmunitedway.org or call him at 802-745-0101.

Celebrating National 2-1-1 Day at GMUW

211 logo 

Vermont 2-1-1 is celebrating its eleventh year providing statewide information and referral service on February 11th, National 2-1-1 Day. The 2-1-1 personalized helpline service in Vermont is an accredited member of the national Alliance of Information and Referral Systems (AIRS) and a valuable program of the United Ways of Vermont. Over the past ten years, awareness of this easy-to-remember phone number has streamlined access to critical health and human services for thousands of Vermonters in need by providing accurate and up-to-date information about important programs and resources. This United Ways program is staffed by highly-trained and compassionate contact specialists who are ready to help, 24/7, with general inquiries about available assistance or crisis questions about immediate needs. Over 470 Vermonters in Green Mountain United Way’s service area use 2-1-1 each month to connect with housing and food resources, individual and family counseling services, employment and training programs, and much more. With a continuously updated database of thousands of community and government services, the 2-1-1 specialists can identify the right solution for each caller.

Vermont 2-1-1’s vision continues to be to maintain a comprehensive state-wide information and referral system which facilitates access to health and human services for all residents of Vermont, to deliver consistent and quality service with professionally trained staff who are supported by state-of-the-art technology, and to advocate for consumers through effective on-going application of 2-1-1 call data and provision of critical information during an emergency.

Vermont 2-1-1’s service is available by phone and online at www.vermont211.org , providing vital information that can improve—and save—lives. All calls are private and confidential. Whether in times of personal crisis or natural disaster, the United Ways of Vermont 2-1-1 program is committed to being the first, most essential resource to any Vermonter in need of assistance.

Contributed by Dixie Burns, CRS
Vermont 2-1-1
Northeast Resource Specialist
United Ways of Vermont

Community Forums and Events

Feb. 11, 2016: National 2-1-1 Day. See separate article from Dixie Burns of Vermont 2-1-1.
Feb. 15, 2016: GMUW offices will be closed for Presidents’ Day.
February: American Heart Month
Feb. 22 to 27, 2016: America Saves Week. Go to www.americasaves.org for lots of tips and encouragement on how to save your hard-earned money and become financially stable.
March: National Nutrition Month and National March for Meals Month
March 4, 2016: Community Learning Circle: Navigating Trauma in Your Role as a Leader event to be held at the Old Labor Hall in Barre. This is by invitation. For information, contact Tawnya at Green Mountain United Way at 802-622-8056.


Green Mountain United Way · 1 Conti Circle, Unit 3 · Barre, VT 05641-9604 · USA

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Central Vermont Medical Center Holds Job Fair on Feb. 5

Central Vermont Medical Center Holds Job Fair on Feb. 5

University of Vermont Health Network – Central Vermont Medical Center in Berlin will hold a job fair at the hospital on Friday, Feb. 5, 2015 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. The job fair is open to anyone in the community interested in the health care industry.

Recruiters and managers will be on hand to answer questions about the wide variety of career opportunities available at the medical center and talk about current openings for nurses (LNA’s, RN’s, LPN’s), administrative professionals, service workers, tradespeople and more. Cover letters and resumes are encouraged.

The event will be held in Conference Rooms 1 and 2 on the lower level of the hospital at the UVM Health Network – Central Vermont Medical Center’s main campus located at 130 Fisher Road in Berlin, Vt..

The University of Vermont Health Network – Central Vermont Medical Center is part of a four-hospital system established to deliver high quality academic medicine to every community we serve. Our partners are: The University of Vermont Medical Center, The University of Vermont Health Network – Champlain Valley Physicians Hospital, The University of Vermont Health Network – Elizabethtown Community Hospital. For more information and to connect with us through Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, LinkedIn and our blog, visit UVMHealth.org/CVMC (link is external).

Friday, February 5, 2016 – 10:00am

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