Each year since its inception CASP has been growing in scale and organizational maturity. At the same time, public financial support has grown from $10,601 (2016) to $108,274 (2019). In 2020, despite the economic challenges of the pandemic year, CASP donors continued to support our work at a generous level: $94,428 (see our 2020 Annual Report).
Milestones along the way:
- Contacts were made with Central American consulates in Texas.
- Community Asylum Seekers Project, Inc., was formed as a nonprofit.
- Work began on creating Safe Haven – a living space for an asylum-seeking family – through the dedicated support of community members, who contributed labor, materials, and funding.
- An asylum-seeking family was welcomed to Safe Haven.
- The Board received training by the Refugee Immigration Ministry, a well-established organization with a similar mission.
- A volunteer case manager began working with CASP.
- Three new asylum-seeking families joined us.
- Our first guest received employment authorization and found work.
- Another family joined us, hosted by a unique collaboration between a local college and the townspeople.
- Another family arrived, reuniting a long-separated extended family under one roof.
- Several more guests received employment authorization and found work.
- CASP hired its first employees: a part-time Executive Director and part-time Case Manager.
- Several families increased their independence significantly as they moved out of their host homes into their own living spaces.
- CASP volunteers received the 2019 Unsung Heroes Award from Compassionate Brattleboro, an organization formed to foster compassion in the town of Brattleboro, VT.
- Faced with the COVID-19 crisis, CASP found ways to provide for the safety and wellness of our asylum-seeking guests, volunteers, and staff.
- CASP began exploring new housing options for our guests, including making use of short-term hosting offers and renting individual apartments to continue being able to house asylum seekers during the pandemic.
- Two new asylum seekers arrived, while two other guest families achieved full-time employment and moved into their own living space.
- A new Executive Director took office at CASP, while CASP’s founder and first Executive Director remains involved with chosen projects.
- CASP began an intentional process of digging into power and white supremacy in our work, with professionally-facilitated workshops on antiracism and workshops for the board and staff about moving from a charity to a solidarity model.
- We began a series of public webinars focused on issues relevant to seeking asylum in Vermont.