updated Sept 2023
Lamoille Community House (LCH) launched its 365 Fundraising Campaign in recognition of the fact that people in Lamoille County without a permanent home need shelter, a bed, a meal, a shower, and a place to feel welcomed and supported, 365 days a year. That’s every day, 365 days a year.
As LCH adapted to the pandemic, we witnessed the truth about homelessness in our community.
During the pandemic, the Agency of Human Services loosened its criteria for the hotel voucher program and we saw people who previously could not access the vouchers appear. This gave us a better count of how many people were in need of housing. Before the pandemic, LCH served 30 – 40 guests in one winter. Since the pandemic, we have averaged serving 100-120 individuals across the four locations where staff are stationed: our seasonal shelter plus three hotels.
Working with and serving those living in hotels year-round has proved to our community that our organization’s services are needed every day of the year, not just in the winter.
Our local human service organizations and planning teams have identified a year-round shelter facility as the number one priority for our county in addressing the housing crisis. A year round shelter facility means that people have a landing place where they can breathe and begin to take steps towards their goals, at any time of the year.
A shelter for people experiencing homelessness in Lamoille County that is open 365 days a year.
Lamoille Community House launched its 365 campaign so that we can remain open 365 days of the year, instead of only November through April. Homelessness does not begin November 15 or end on April 15.
LCH has partnered with Lamoille Housing Partnership, and together we identified a site that will be ideal for our new location. With grants from the Vermont Housing and Conservation Board, LHP will purchase and renovate this building, and LCH will lease it from them indefinitely – for as long as there’s a need to serve our unhoused neighbors.
Emergency shelter is at the core of our vision. In addition, our expanded services including:
- 21 individual rooms for each guest
- a community space
- staff offices
- kitchen and laundry facilities
- computer lab/library
- recreational spaces – indoor and outdoor (gardening)
- meeting spaces for partner organizations
- LCH van for transportation
Creating meeting space for partners like Lamoille County Mental Health, North Central Vermont Recovery Center, Lamoille Family Center, and VocRehab is a priority because meeting the client where they are increases engagement and success. Bringing services into our building is a trauma-informed approach that allows for trust-building between the client and service provider.
We see LCH’s new facility as the first rung on a ladder of housing safety and security, where LCH and its partners can ensure that no one misses this crucial step.
Our new shelter will be located in the Town of Hyde Park off of Clark Drive. Formerly an assisted living facility, the building is perfectly suited for our needs. We’re really looking forward to moving in sometime between January and March!
How You Can Help
Please support the Lamoille Community House 365 Campaign by making a donation here. With your support, no one in our community will be without a safe place to sleep.