The Vermont Changemakers Table is a group of young Vermonters seeking to collaborate and build relationships that bring positive change to Vermont and its communities. The program, a collaboration between Vermont Businesses for Social Responsibility (VBSR), the Vermont Community Foundation (VCF), and the High Meadows Fund (HMF), convenes a group of about 20 Vermonters with diverse backgrounds, occupations, and knowledge for a monthly virtual meeting to connect with leaders and experts across the state and share lived experience, discuss issues facing Vermont communities, and explore innovative solutions.
We are pleased to announce that for the first time ever, there will be no program fee for applicants who are selected to participate in the Changemakers Table. Involvement in this year’s cohort will be free of charge.
The application for the 2020-2021 Changemakers Table
is now live and accepting submissions!
The deadline for application submissions is September 30th.
Applicants will be notified of decisions by October 9th.
The program spans from October 2020 through May 2021, consisting primarily of eight 1.5 hour virtual meetings. Once chosen from a pool of applicants, the cohort of Changemakers will democratically decide which topics to dive into throughout the year. Examples of topics include child care, rural community engagement, uprooting white supremacy, mutual aid & crisis response, improving water quality, local food system viability, flooding caused by climate change, multi-generational poverty, and health care access. Many topics overlap or include a broad range of issues—determining the specificity and framing of the topic will also be up to the cohort.
Two meetings will be dedicated to each topic chosen. The first meeting for each topic will be focused on the cohort’s own stories and lived experience relevant to the issue. Between meetings, Changemakers will be encouraged to explore how the issue is affecting their community. In the second meeting, the cohort will be joined by experts and leaders on the topic to share insights and answer questions on localized responses to the issue. We anticipate that some geographically focused, collaborative efforts may emerge from discussion—in these cases, VBSR, VCF, and HMF can connect Changemakers with relevant leaders, experts, resources, and existing initiatives to advance solutions.
In addition to the cohort meetings, connecting with other young people from across Vermont, and access to a network of leaders across the state, each member will receive a free Vermont Businesses for Social Responsibility membership for the year, providing them with access to VBSR educational programming, networking opportunities, and free admission to VBSR’s Annual Conference, along with other member benefits.
Ideal applicants to this program will be:
- Passionate about exploring and strengthening the communities they live in
- Seeking to build new relationships with fellow young Vermonters
- Seeking to learn from diverse perspectives and identities
- Excited to dig into difficult discussions
- Under 35 years old
The Changemakers program’s success relies on a broad diversity of perspectives, including racial identity, gender identity, geography, interests, and other lived experience. People of color, people with disabilities, gender-noncomforming people, veterans, first or second generation Americans, people with refugee status, and undocumented people are strongly encouraged to apply. All expenses for the program are covered by VBSR, VCF, and HMF.
With many young Vermonters facing uncertainty in the wake of the pandemic coupled with a groundswell of support for racial justice and major societal change, this year’s Changemaker’s Table cohort provides a unique opportunity for participants to discuss compelling challenges and talk through strategies and innovative ideas for making change in Vermont at a pivotal moment in our history.
Questions about the Changemakers Table?
Email VBSR Education & Events Manager, Carra Cheslin, at: firstname.lastname@example.org