We provide significant financial, volunteer and staff support, and donate space to the Joint Urban Ministry Project, Inc., an interfaith ministry supported by more than 25 area faith communities. JUMP provides much needed direct services, hospitality, referrals, advocacy and spiritual care to families and individuals in need in our community.
An every Saturday community breakfast and bag lunch; we have long provided facility, much needed food, financial resources and key volunteer and staff support to this ecumenical service to the community.
Dismas House provides transitional housing for recently incarcerated persons. Church groups (including our Middle and High School youth) and individual volunteers prepare home cooked meals monthly and eat with the residents.
Burlington Meals on Wheels
Church members are volunteer drivers and deliverers for many routes including “staffing” eight routes on the second Wednesday of each month.
COTS-Committee on Temporary Shelter
Church volunteers staff the annual COTS Walkathon as well as the “First Congregational Church” night of the COTS Phonathon. Several church members are long-time volunteers at COTS. We offer space to COTS for meetings and programs.
Correctional Center Book Project
Since mid-2010, our Christian Action Committee has organized a project that makes books and magazines available to those incarcerated at the correctional facility in South Burlington.
Support for African Refugees
Staff and church volunteers have supported refugees from Congo with friendship, assistance in learning English, and help in finding furniture and jobs. Church members purchase CSA farm shares to support New Farms for New Americans, a local farming program for new immigrants.
The Sara Holbrook Community Center (SHCC)
SHCC is a non-profit organization that serves the children of low income families, including refugees. Several church members are volunteers and High School Youth lead activities for children in summer and school vacation programs.
Seasonal Local Programs
Share Christmas and The Christmas Wrap programs provide gifts and food to families in need at Christmas; The Alternative Giving Program offers shoppers alternative gifts that support local and international service programs. Burlington Summer Lunch Program provides lunches to children in low income areas. Church volunteers including high school students plan and lead activities for the children.
The Church Building and Property
First Congregational Church is open for all or part of the day – seven days and sometimes seven evenings a week. We see the use of the building as a strong aspect of our mission and ministry to the wider community. Church programs and partnerships that reflect our mission and ministry that are housed at First Congregational Church include:
- The Possibility Shop: Church volunteers manage our thrift shop benefiting both the church and the wider community.
- New Alpha Missionary Baptist Church: Since 1990, our church has rented space, at a modest rate, to the New Alpha Missionary Baptist Church of Burlington, a small African American Congregation. First Congregational Church and NAMBC celebrate our partnership through an annual joint worship service and church picnic.
- AA, Al-Anon: For many decades First Congregational Church has made space available at a modest rate to AA and Al-Anon meetings.
- JUMP (Joint Urban Ministry Project): JUMP is an interfaith emergency assistance program housed at First Congregational Church. JUMP assists more than 55 area households (families and single adults) each week.
- Ronald McDonald House: Burlington’s Ronald McDonald House is housed (next door to the church) in our former parsonage. The renovated building is owned by First Congregational Church and leased (long-term) to the Ronald McDonald House Charities of Burlington for $1.00 per year. Church members serve as volunteers at the house.