The Caring Network
The UCM Caring Network is comprised of volunteers who welcome members and friends of our UCM community to request short-term assistance during times of crisis, need or transition. Rides to medical appointments; meals; companionship or help with errands following a medical event; a new child arriving in the household; the experience of an overwhelming life event—these are some of the reasons for reaching out. Our UCM Covenant asks us to support each other in times of need, and this is one way we live this promise as a congregation.
How to Submit a Request:
If you wish to make a request, or would like to make one on behalf of someone else, please contact Alona Tate or Paula Gills, co-coordinators, using this form. Do reach out even if you are not sure it is an appropriate request for the network; if not, you will receive help to explore other options. Do this as much in advance as possible, as your message needs to be relayed to volunteers who will need time to arrange their schedules in order to assist you. Note that volunteers will respond as their resources, talents and capabilities allow, depending on the nature of your request. You will be contacted a few days after your request is posted to see if you have gotten the help you need.
Related Resources for Assistance:
- Caring Network works closely with UCM’s Lay Pastoral Care team to make sure that both logistical and emotional needs are being met. The UCM Care Fund is also available throughout the year, as an additional resource for those in need of specific financial assistance. You are encouraged to reach out to either, both, or all!
- The Central Vermont Council on Aging and the Vermont Center for Independent Living can provide excellent information about longer-term assistance with things like transportation, meals, and companionship for the elderly and disabled.
- UCM’s Communications Team regularly updates our Community Action & Resources page, with links to and information about community resources and aid organizations available in and around Washington County, Vermont.
What if I Wish to Become a Caring Network Volunteer?
We always welcome new volunteers to the network list! Consider whether or not you desire to receive emails or phone calls from the coordinators requesting assistance for our members and friends. You will not be asked to respond to every request, but we ask you to say “yes” to a posted need that fits your abilities and schedule at least every two months. The frequency of requests is variable with an average of 2-3 per month. Please contact Paula Gills with any questions or if you wish to enroll.