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Actions & Accomplishments

October 2018

  • New asylum seeking family arrives at safe haven, Westminster, VT.
  • Fund raising drive ends successfully, garnering around $17,000.
  • CASP Board members meet with Susan Still, consulting advisor to nonprofit organizations, for strategic planning.
  • Asylum seeking family studies English four times weekly and volunteers at Loaves and Fishes, Brattleboro, VT.
  • Asylum seeking mother continues conversational English study and prepares to take test for drivers’ license; grows peppers and tomatillos; makes cajeta, a Mexican caramel delicacy.

September 2018

  • CASP Executive Director and asylum seeking mother participate in “Opening the Doors” discussion between artists and local activists, Puppets in the Green Mountains Festival, Sandglass Theater, Brattleboro, VT.
  • CASP welcomes a new asylum seeking family, Brattleboro, VT.
  • Final preparations are made for welcoming a new family, Westminster, VT.
  • Fund raising drive begins with StartSomeGood crowd sourcing site.
  • CASP Board welcomes new member Miguel Orantes.

August 2018

  • Antidote Books donates a share of profits at the store’s birthday celebration, Putney, VT.
  • Asylum seeking children start their second year of school, Bellows Falls, VT.
  • Executive Director Steve Crofter presents story of the Community Asylum Seekers Project at Tree Farm Campground campfire, sponsored by Vermont Humanities Council, Springfield Food Coop, Springfield Town Library and Springfield Unitarian Universalist Congregation, VT.
  • CASP Board welcomes new member Jim Gay.

July 2018

  • CASP invited by national coalition, Freedom for Immigrants, working for rights of detained immigrants, refugees and asylum seekers, to contribute to design of standards for community hosting of these people.
  • Letters to the editor connecting the CASP mission to anguish over children separated from their parents at the border appear in the Eagle Times, Claremont, NH, and Brattleboro Reformer, Brattleboro, VT.
  • Information table at July 4th parade and celebration garners volunteers, donations, and raffle ticket sales for painting by Debbi Wetzel, Saxtons River, VT.
  • CASP board members Jeff Ladd and Steve Crofter join invited group of local activists at “Songs of Refuge and Resistance,” gala concert and dinner at Yellow Barn, Putney, VT.
  • CASP President meets with Outreach Committee, St. Michael’s Episcopal Church for discussion of CASP formation and activity, Brattleboro, VT.
  • CASP President and Vice President give presentation at Rotary Club, Bellows Falls, VT.

June 2018

  • Search for asylum seeking family begins for additional safe haven, home owners and team of supporting volunteers in Brattleboro, VT.
  • CASP information table at “Families Belong Together” rally garners new donations, volunteers, and two additional host homes for asylum seeking individuals or families, Brattleboro, VT.
  • Asylum seeking youngster graduates from Kindergarten, Bellows Falls, VT, and children of asylum seeking family attend art workshop, River Gallery School, Brattleboro, VT.
  • CASP President Steve Crofter gives presentation with Joe Shapiro of the Keene Immigration and Refugee Partnership at the Lions Club of Keene, NH.
  • News story featuring painting by Vermont artist Debbi Wetzel with benefit raffle for CASP appears in Vermont Journal, Ludlow, VT.
  • Volunteers, supporters, and asylum seeking family attend outdoor potluck gathering, Saxtons River, VT.

May 2018

  • CASP President is interviewed by Robert McBride on “Everyday People,” Falls Area Community TV, VT.
  • CASP informational table with raffle opportunity for painting by Vermont artist Debbi Wetzel featured at Pansy Festival and Cinco de Mayo celebration, Singing River Farm, Rockingham, VT. Raffle continues for painting by artist Debbi Wetzel at Rockingham Library, Bellows Falls, VT.
  • Mother in asylum seeking family meets with Advanced Spanish class to discuss her experiences with students, Kimball Union Academy, Meriden, NH.
  • Asylum seeking mother begins attendance of conversational English course, Center for New Americans, Greenfield, MA.

April 2018

  • Asylum seeking family and their hosts visit the Statue of Liberty, New York, NY.
  • Asylum seeker from Mexico participates in Global Fair, Kimball Union Academy, Meriden, NH, describing her experiences to small groups of students.
  • CASP President and three Board members meet with Mission Board, United Church of Christ, Bellows Falls, VT.
  • Support teams for additional seekers begin to coalesce in Putney, VT, and Brattleboro, VT, with neighborhood meetings.
  • CASP President participates in advisory capacity in distance conference with Guatemalan asylum seeker and committee from Congregation Shir Shalom, Woodstock, VT.

March 2018

  • “Rising of the Moon” concert with Charlie King, Annie Patterson and Peter Blood, fundraiser for CASP at All Souls Church, Brattleboro, VT.
  • CASP President gives presentation to meeting of Keene Elm City Rotary, Keene, NH.
  • President Steve Crofter speaks about CASP at special brunch, Christ’s Church, Saxtons River, VT.
  • President gives presentation at Center Church, Brattleboro Area Interfaith Initiative, VT.

February 2018

  • President presents the CASP organization and history in discussion with Non-Fiction Book Group, Walpole, NH.

January 2018

  • Tickets go on sale for “Rising of the Moon” sing-along concert March 17, 7:00 pm with Charlie King, Annie Patterson & Peter Blood, a benefit for CASP at All Souls Unitarian Universalist Church, West Brattleboro, VT.
  • Article “On the Long Road to Asylum” about the arrival of our family to the Safe Haven, published in Eagle Times, Claremont, NH. View the article here
  • Asylees at two host homes are busy with English and math study, medical and dental work, music lessons, and school while attending to details of asylum applications.
  • CASP applies to present workshop at Global Fair, Kimball Union Academy, Meriden, NH.
  • CASP President presents CASP’s mission to Social Ministry Committee of Our Savior Lutheran Church, Hanover, NH.
  • Article “Violence, a Border Crossing, and Then a Haven in Vermont” is published in The Commons, Brattleboro, VT.

December 2017

  • CASP President and  Case Manager present CASP’s mission and activities to the Keene Immigrant and Refugee Partnership, Keene, NH.
  • Annual appeal continues.

November 2017

  • Annual appeal begins.
  • CASP President meets with community members in Windham, VT.
  • CASP board members meet with Upper Valley Refugee Working Group, Hanover, NH.
  • Hosts Steve Crofter and Laurel Green, the asylum seeking family living with them, and CASP board members present CASP’s mission and activities and participate in discussion at Putney (VT) Friends Meeting.

October 2017

  • Our first asylum seeking family arrives from Latin America and is welcomed into Safe Haven; English classes begin for mother; school begins for children.
  • Two CASP board members attend information session for Volunteering with Families Detained at Berks County Family Detention Center.
  • Contact made with Upper Valley Refugee Working Group.
  • Plans discussed for further development, outreach, and year-end fundraising.

September 2017

  • Family in detention in Texas interviewed for possible CASP sponsorship.

August 2017

  • Work completed on Safe Haven.

July 2017

  • CASP information and outreach table, Independence Day parade and festivities, Saxtons River, VT.
  • Steve Crofter attends lecture series on refugees, Marlboro College.
  • Outreach letter sent to listed CASP supporters.

June 2017

  • CASP accepts its first asylee, a young woman from south Asia.
  • Springfield Co-op “Round-Up” for gathering community donations to CASP.
  • Incentive grant given anonymously for carpentry work in Safe Haven, Singing River Farm.
  • Graduation address for Vermont Adult Learning Center presented by Steve Crofter.

May 2017

  • Outreach to asylum and immigration organizations and attorneys to identify asylees in need.
  • Mary Armbruster joins CASP as Case Manager.
  • Contracts, intake procedures and recording forms finalized.

April 2017

  • CASP highlighted as a model for local support of asylum seekers at all-day conference on immigration organized by Vermont-Honduras Partnership. Contacts made at conference, including:
    • Immigration case worker from Senator Patrick Leahy’s office
    • Pro-bono source for family counseling
    • Immigration attorneys
    • Other organizations doing work with immigrants in northeastern US.
  • CASP President meets with Community Relations Officer for New England Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE).
  • Policies for organizational governance and action compiled by CASP Board.
  • Sponsorship letter created for outreach to area businesses.
  • Fundraiser party for Safe Haven with cowboy show of songs and stories performed by Steve Crofter and Laurel Green.
  • Rutland Herald/Times-Argus article “Making a Sanctuary” on CASP and the Safe Haven.

March 2017

  • CASP Board members attend immigration information and update session at School for International Training, sponsored by Women’s Freedom Center, Vermont Law School South Royalton Legal Clinic, and School for International Training.
  • List of interpreters and translators compiled.
  • CASP President shows film “Which Way Home” and leads discussion on immigration, Unitarian Universalist Church, Springfield, VT.
  • Laurel Green and Steve Crofter lead service on “Building Bridges,” focusing on the work of CASP, Unitarian Universalist Church, Springfield, VT.
  • Steve Crofter leads service focusing on the work of CASP at All Souls Church, West Brattleboro, VT

February 2017

  • Safe Haven renovations for family living space ongoing, nearing completion.
  • Article published in The Message newspaper commemorating donation of $800 to CASP by Principles in Action Fund of First Universalist Parish of Chester.
  • Painting party held at Safe Haven living space at Singing River Farm.
  • Interdenominational blessing of Safe Haven living space at Singing River Farm, with hymns and readings led by Reverend Nancy Crumbine, First Universalist Parish, Father Zuccaro, St. Joseph’s Catholic Church, and Susan Peters.
  • Key volunteers identified for organizing material item donations, services, mailing list oversight, and fundraising.

January 2017

  • Training by RIM (Refugee Immigration Ministry) of Boston for Board and volunteers in preparation for receiving first family.

December 2016

  • First annual appeal letter disseminated to 150 potential donors;  goal is $20,000.
  • Presentation by Steve and John to Bellows Falls Rotary Club; 15 attendees.
  • Presentation by Steve with guest speaker, former asylum seeker Atilio Barreda of Peru, at Rockingham Free Public Library, 20 attendees. FACT TV filmed the presentation.
  • Steve Crofter gives presentation at the Saxtons River VT Nature Club, a community social organization

November 2016

  • Claremont NH Eagle Times article about CASP.
  • CASP holds its first community pot luck dinner to develop ideas and recruit volunteers; approximately 30 attendees.

October 2016

  • First articles about CASP appear in local media.

September 2016

  • Board members consult with RIM of Boston.

August 2016

  • GoFundMe site established.
  • CASP Bylaws formulated and approved by the Board.

July 2016

  • Work begins on Safe Haven (living space) for first CASP family.
  • CASP Board of Directors formed.

May 2016

  • Steve begins to recruit board members and volunteers.

February 2016

  • Steve, Dorothy, and Dempster make their most recent trip to help with intake and fulfillment of basic needs for travelers at the Humanitarian Respite Center for asylum seekers at Sacred Heart Church, McAllen, Texas.
  • Steve conceives of CASP and makes contact with Consulates to Honduras, Guatemala and El Salvador in McAllen, Texas.