Vermont Housing & Conservation Board Pledges $1 Million to the Upper Valley Haven


[PRESS RELEASE] Vermont Housing & Conservation Board Pledges $1 Million to the Upper Valley Haven

May 2022 
CONTACT: Spencer Sanders, (802) 478-1806 or


Vermont Housing & Conservation Board Awards $1 Million to the Upper Valley Haven for New Shelter and Day Station

At its Board meeting on Friday, May 13, 2022, the Vermont Housing & Conservation Board (VHCB) awarded the Upper Valley Haven a grant of $1 million towards the expenses associated with construction of a new shelter and day station on its campus in White River Junction, VT. The proposed low-barrier shelter will contain 17 beds and provide a safe, trauma-informed setting for vulnerable, unhoused individuals. The day station will serve as a resource center with computers for housing or job services, benefits applications, a classroom, meeting space, a staff breakroom, kitchen, storage, showers, and laundry facilities.

This grant will assist the Haven in its goal to reduce hunger, food and housing insecurity, and help those who are experiencing poverty pursue a self-directed life. The project’s total fundraising goal is $4.2 million.

Haven Board President, Mary Brown, expressed, “We are profoundly grateful to the VHCB for this benevolent endorsement to create a safe space for unhoused individuals in the Hartford area. We firmly believe we will be able to raise the funds needed for this critical project from the Upper Valley community which has loyally supported us for many years. This grant from VHCB is certain to inspire other donors.”

Haven Executive Director, Michael Redmond, stated, “This project will allow us to better serve those who are experiencing poverty. The Haven has provided the same essential services out of its existing buildings, but the new low-barrier shelter will replace the winter seasonal emergency shelter we operated for five years prior to the pandemic on the first floor of the Byrne Building, free up administrative office space, and provide increased space for the food programs. The day station and resource center will provide a safe setting for people to research housing and employment listings and get access to other essential services. This generous grant will allow us to design a space that uses trauma-informed principles and is energy efficient to help reduce the amount of unsheltered people in the community.”

The Haven receives inquiries daily from people in need of a place to stay. On the coordinated entry list, there are currently 165 households, most are single adults or couples without children. The more efficient use of space will streamline the Upper Valley Haven’s programs, resulting in improved outcomes for clients; more long-term housing placements, more life skills, and more stable employment.

The Haven is seeking permission from the Town of Hartford to build this project. Meetings with the Zoning Board of Adjustment and Planning Commission are scheduled for June 8 and 13. The grant from VHCB is contingent on receiving these approvals and raising the funds needed for the project.

The Upper Valley Haven is a private nonprofit organization with a budget of $3.7 million and nearly 50 staff. Since 1980, with the support of the Upper Valley community, the Upper Valley Haven has provided support for individuals and families who are experiencing poverty. The Haven supports people who are housing or food insecure through its temporary shelters, supportive housing, children’s programs, and community outreach support. The Haven operates 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, and never charges for any services. The Upper Valley Haven serves more than 14,000 people annually.

Established in 1987, the Vermont Housing & Conservation Board remains the forerunner in the nation in pioneering a comprehensive approach to affordable housing and community development, linked with land conservation and historic preservation. The results have been impressive. Since its inception, the Board has awarded $400 million to nonprofit housing and conservation organizations, towns, municipalities and state agencies to conserve land, develop housing and restore historic community buildings in more than 200 towns. This investment has resulted in the creation of more than 13,880 affordable homes, the conservation of 438,400 acres of agricultural and recreational lands, forestland and natural areas, and the restoration of 78 historic community buildings for public use. To read more visit their website.


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