What I am doing the last two weeks I am in Vermont

I will be carelessly packing boxes for Steve to tsk tsk over, figuring out if we really should move our one remaining cat across country and drying my tears for much of May. When that last week hits and it is finally warm in Vermont I will be extending my focus beyond the mess of my family’s move. You can find me, two talented actual teachers and a group of Burlington High School students piloting our Philanthrome progam.

Over the past 18 years I have worked with many of Vermont’s non profit organizations and come to realize the incredible inteconnectedness that it takes to keep robust programs running in a state as small as Vermont. There are many people that want to help by volunteering, donating goods or services, writing checks, creating partnerships, and generally supporting their neighbors. Understanding our communities needs and what organizations exist to support these needs is the first step. Navigating the way to be part of the solution is the next. Tapping into the energy, enthusiasm, and out of the box thinking of the students in our community excites me. This is the end of my time as a Vermont donor, but the beginning of theirs. You can help.

Philanthropy means “love of humanity” in the sense of caring for, nourishing, developing, and enhancing “what it means to be human” on both the givers’ and receivers’ parts.

“Phalnthrome” will help the next generation of givers and doers understand and tap into this lifelong practice. For two days the students will be immersed in design thinking , a positive proactice approach to problem sollving. Then community leaders will offer these students the lay of the land in local non profit organizations and foundations.

For the bulk of the course students will be hands on visitng and interviewing two vital organizations in our community: King Street Center and Spectrum Youth and Family services. Each student team will identify an area from growth within the development side of the organization, then plan and pitch a project to their partner non profit.

In keeping with the spirit of this class, the motivation of th estudents, and the efficacy of the organizations we will not just plan these projects, but fund them as well. This is where you come in. Let’s demonstrate to our Burlington students that their community is behind them as they choose the study and practice of Philanthropy for the last few weeks of their high school year.

Your tax deductilbe donation will help fund a human centered design project at the organization of your choice. Any gift is appreciated.

King Street Center:

King Street Center is a not-for-profit community organization that provides children and families the core life-building skills necessary for a healthy and productive future.


(Donors should select “Burlington High School Philanthrome course” as a program designation from the drop-down box.)

Spectrum Youth & Family Services:

Spectrum helps teenagers, young adults, people with a history of violence, and their families turn their live around.


Published by

Anna Palmer

Anna Rosenblum Palmer is a freelance writer based in Denver, CO. She writes about sex, parenting, cat pee, bi-polar disorder and the NFL; all things inextricably intertwined with her mental health. In her free time she teaches her boys creative swear words, seeks the last missing puzzle piece and thinks deeply about how she is not exercising. Her writing can be found on Babble, Parent.co, Great Moments in Parenting, Ravishly, Good Men Project, Sammiches and Psych Meds, Playpen, Crazy Good Parent, and YourTango. She also does a fair amount of navel gazing on her own blog at annarosenblumpalmer.com.

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