October means peak foliage season in Vermont, but it also signals the fast-approaching start of a cold, snowy winter in New England. While vital year-round, Spectrum Youth & Family Services becomes a crucial resource during this time, providing basic needs, supportive housing, skills programs and counseling for homeless or at-risk teens, young adults, and families.
2019 Spectrum's Empty Bowl Dinner
This year, the nonprofit organization held its annual Empty Bowl Dinner at University of Vermont’s Dudley H. Davis Center, designed to bring community members together to dine and raise money for the many services and support it provides. Twincraft is a long-time supporter of Spectrum, and we were delighted to again attend this heartwarming event with a group of employees from teams across our organization.
During the event, attendees select from a collection of handmade ceramic bowls created and donated by local artists and then fill them with soups donated by local restaurants, including Penny Cluse, Bluebird Barbecue, Pingala Café, New Moon, A Single Pebble, and Butch + Babes. Each soup is served up by local celebrity guests, including DJ Craig Mitchell, WCAX anchor Darren Perron, and artist Katharine Monstream.
In addition to a delicious dinner, guests can peruse and select items to “buy” from Spectrum’s Giving Board. Unlike other fundraiser event, attendees don’t purchase items for themselves. Instead, guests can choose to bid on items that directly benefit Spectrum’s clients, including clothing, meals, supplies, or even a Ben & Jerry’s ice cream social.
This year, the event surpassed its fundraising goal – the 400 people in attendance collectively donated close to $100,000.
The dinner concluded with a short video; it featuring testimonials from three Spectrum young adult clients who spoke about their experiences with the organization and the positive impact it has had on their lives. The young adults, in attendance at the dinner, received a standing ovation and round of applause from all the event attendees. Their candid and inspiring stories reinforced the importance of organizations like Spectrum and the significant impact they have on individuals and the community at large.
About Spectrum Youth & Family Services
Spectrum Youth & Family Services supports close to 2,000 teens and young adults, as well as their families, providing necessities such as food or long term or short term shelter, coaching, mentoring, job assistance, and counseling to address mental health and other critical issues. In addition to their annual Empty Bowl Dinner, Spectrum hosts its Sleep Out, a fundraiser that invites community members to spend a chilly night in March outside in solidarity with those who are homeless.