Vermont Caring for Children Foundation
Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Vermont created the Vermont Caring for Children Foundation (VCCF), a charitable, nonprofit foundation, to advance and improve health-related programs that benefit children and youth in Vermont.
VCCF supports local nonprofit community organizations through financial contributions, in-kind services, and volunteer support. VCCF encourages recipients to use funds to leverage matching or challenge grants whenever possible.
The foundation grants support to organization requests that address:
- Community health care needs
- One or more of the following priorities: physical activity promotion, access to healthy food and nutrition, early childhood development, prevention and treatment of chronic conditions, mental health, oral health and substance use prevention
- Social determinants of health and reduces barriers to care
Helping Youth Thrive: Healthy Kids, Healthy Farms, Healthy Communities
A virtual symposium focusing on the benefits of local agriculture and sustainable food systems in promoting the physical and emotional well-being of our youth and families.
When: Wednesday, April 28, 2021 | 1 – 2:30 p.m.
Who: Betsy Rosenbluth, Project Director of Vermont FEED at Shelburne Farms
Why: This virtual symposium continues our focus on Vermont organizations that are “Caring for Our Kids” and keeping them emotionally and physically strong during this unprecedented time.
Food security is an often overlooked but critical aspect of health care. A sustainable food system gives everyone access to nutritious, healthy, affordable foods and opportunities to produce it. Students who are well-fed with nutritious foods are more engaged and successful in their learning. The Farm to School model gives students the knowledge, skills and confidence to make healthy choices for themselves and their communities.
The conversation will include the perspectives of high school students who have been active in promoting Farm to School efforts in their local community. Click HERE to reserve your spot at the April 28 livestream seminar.
View our January 21 symposium 'Overcoming Barriers to Outdoor Experiences' below. Other topics that are planned for future symposia include “Communicating with Youth: Having Tough Conversations.”
Featuring Myra Peffer, Program Director of Come Alive Outside, Norm Staunton - Director of Operations, Vermont Adaptive Ski & Sports , Mirna Valerio – The Mirnavator, blogger and bestselling author of A Beautiful Work in Progress, and Arwen Turner, Executive Director of Come Alive Outside.
View our December 9 symposium 'Helping Youth Thrive' below. Jen Boardman, statewide director of the Youth Development Program, presents information about adolescent development, the impact of trauma and the power of resilience.
Other topics that are planned for future symposia include “Breaking Barriers to Being Active Outdoors” and “Communicating with Youth: Having Tough Conversations.”
Youth Programs We Support in Our Communities
Girls on the Run Vermont (GOTR)
Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Vermont is the lead corporate sponsor of Girls on the Run, a statewide program promoting self-esteem and healthy activity for young women in grades 3 through 8. Volunteer coaches organize and lead the ten-week program, which culminates in 5K walk/run events in Windham, Rutland, and Chittenden Counties. Over its 20 years in Vermont, GOTR has made an impact on the lives of more than 45,000 young women.
Velocity is a unique after-school program that provides opportunities for boys in middle school to try new activities and discuss important topics in a non-competitive and supportive setting. In partnership with the Greater Burlington YMCA, Velocity recruits and trains mentors who lead sessions that reinforce the program values of caring, honesty, respect, and responsibility.
The six-week program culminates in a celebration at Camp Abnaki in North Hero, where nearly 200 boys, mentors and parents enjoy a day of canoeing, archery, tennis, cooking, and more. Velocity is making a difference; post-event survey data show that self-esteem increased by 6% for participants, while feelings of empathy for other people increased by 9%.
At the recent Vermont Principles Association Conference more than 20 new schools signed up to get more information about the Velocity program so our plan is to grow in 2020.
The Wellness Environment (WE) program at the University of Vermont is a behavior change program for college students to engage in activities that build healthy brains. WEmentor is a facet of the program in which UVM students establish relationships with and mentor local youth. Participants enjoy activities centered on fitness, mindfulness and nutrition. Recent activities include attending athletic events, practicing cooking, participating in physical activities at UVM and visiting the ECHO/Leahy Center on Burlington’s waterfront.
For more information about the Vermont Caring for Children Foundation, email firstname.lastname@example.org.