In times of stress we often turn to our community for support. Community has many faces. It can be our family, friends, extended social networks, or the towns in which we live. We’re so fortunate in that our towns along the Shoreline offer a host of community aid services and are staffed by some of our most dedicated volunteers. If you are in need yourself, we are here to support you. If you are looking for a way to make a positive impact on your community, we are here to support you in that as well. My team and I have assembled a list of organizations that are providing aid not only during this COVID-19 crisis, but all throughout the year. Please consider donating, if you are able, to one of the organizations below, to your local fire department and EMS services, or any other organization you know of that has a need.
- Community Dining Room was founded in 1985 and serves the needs of the south-central Connecticut Shoreline from East Haven to Old Saybrook.
- Branford Food Pantry
- Branford Community Foundation has created a temporary relief fund to aid in the COVID-19 response and has used it to support the Women & Family Life Center. Additionally, the foundation supports the educational, cultural, health, social and civic needs of the Branford community.
- Guilford Interfaith Volunteers operates under to motto of “Neighbors Helping Neighbors” with a primary goal of providing residents with nutritious food. The organization also seeks to reduce the feelings of isolation and loneliness while enabling residents to remain in their homes. There are several arms of service provided:
- Guilford Foundation is committed to improving the quality of life in Guilford by connecting “people who care with the causes that matter to them.” For their COVID-19 response that have created a temporary relief fund and have partnered with the Women & Family Life Center.
- Madison Community Services is an all volunteer run organization that is not affiliated with the Town of Madison. Through the support of generous community members they are able to provide a food pantry, holiday food baskets, a summer lunch program, transportation to medical appointments, youth programs, and crisis assistance.
- The Madison Foundation supports organizations that serve the community’s social, cultural, environmental, educational, and recreational needs by providing seed money to programs that will grow into self-sustaining efforts. They also host the Neighbor to Neighbor fund that provides assistance to community members by helping with home heating costs, providing grocery and gas gift cards, subsidizing lunch at the Senior Center, and offering camp scholarships for children.
- Women & Family Life Center has served over 15,000 women and children from East Haven to Old Lyme since 1991 through their Guided Assistance Program. Services include COVID-19 Support, crisis management, safe housing, and legal assistance.
- Families Helping Families is a charitable foundation made up of volunteers that partners with other local organizations to raise funds and collect goods to help the families of Clinton. They aim to bring out the best in people by identifying needs and connecting the needs with the right people.
- Bare Necessities is the only recognized diaper bank along the Connecticut Shoreline. By providing diapers and wipes to low income families through social service agencies and food banks they are able to help reduce one stressor a family may be experiencing.
- Westbrook Youth and Family Services offers community support through School Supply Closet, Warm the Children, WYFS BookShelf, and Holiday Wish List programs.
Regional Programs –
- The Shoreline Soup Kitchens & Pantries provides food and fellowship to those in need is addition to educating the community about hunger and poverty. Currently, food pantries are open, but meals sites will be closed.
- Connecticut Food Bank services Fairfield, Litchfield, Middlesex, New Haven, New London, and Windham counties and is an affiliate of Feeding America. During this past year the Connecticut Food bank distributed enough food to prepare nearly 22.5 million meals!