The pandemic has hit hard many individuals, organizations, and causes across Connecticut this year. As a member of the [Darien] VFW and the site coordinator for Wreaths Across America, I can attest that both are struggling significantly. Wreaths Across America normally raises the majority of funds for Spring Grove Veterans Cemetery through retail collecting at various locations by the Darien VFW. This year, it did not make sense for elderly veterans to unnecessarily be exposed to getting the COVID virus. Currently, we have raised enough funds to provide for only 149 wreaths.
Americares has committed $2.5 million in aid for the wildfires raging throughout the western United States. Americares support will include critically needed medicine and relief supplies valued at $2 million plus at least $500,000 in financial support for families and health care centers in affected areas. — an announcement from Americares
The record blazes have scorched millions of acres of land, blanketed the region with hazardous smoke, displaced tens of thousands of people and led to more than 30 deaths. With over 100 wildfires burning throughout the West Coast, Portland, San Francisco and Seattle have all experienced “unhealthy” air quality during the last week, prompting one monitoring organization to declare those cities as having the worst air quality in the world. In California, where smoke particles colored the skies red and orange, more than 3.3 million acres have burned, with six of the state’s 20 largest wildfires in history occurring this year alone.
The Community Fund of Darien’s invites groups of friends and family members to compete in the TCF’s inaugural “community chase” competition, “Mission: Possible!” The contest supports local nonprofits. Looking for a way to connect with friends and family while supporting our community at the same time? Your mission, if you choose to accept it, is to join the TCF’s virtual competition for teams of all ages. Mission: Possible! is a fun-filled, socially distanced event that will take place the week of Sept.
Patients receive medical care, including COVID-19 testing, at an Americares and VIDA Perú mobile clinic in Lima, Peru, on Aug. 29. Photo by Angela Ponce/Americares. Stamford-based Americares is providing “surge” medical support in Peruvian health facilities overwhelmed by the COVID-19 pandemic. The health-focused relief and development organization is dispatching medical personnel, all of which are locally based and have experience working within the health system, to health centers in Lambayeque, Lima and Piura to meet the increase in demand for care and provide the struggling health system with some relief as the coronavirus pushes health center capacity to the brink.
Darien Scouting is holding its first ever online benefit auction open to the whole community and featuring a wide range of local services and experiences for individuals and families. — an announcement from Darien Scouting
To bid, visit 32auctions.com/DarienScouting now to check out the items available. New items are added daily so bidders are encouraged to visit often. Highlights include outdoor activities such as golfing, fishing, kayaking, tennis and paddleboarding; opportunities for teens to train with college athletes; art parties, cooking lessons, and music instruction for kids; a personalized historical tour of Darien; memberships to the Beardsley Zoo, Maritime Aquarium, and Stamford Nature Center; home and self-care packages; yoga and fitness training; photography sessions, and more. Proceeds from the auction will go to Darien Scouting, which offers programs for boys and girls grades K-12.
The Darien Junior Football League ready to tackle hunger at its Drive-Thru Food Drive at Person-to-Person this Saturday, June 11 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at 1964 Post Road in Darien. — an announcement from Person-to-Person
“The drive-thru food drive takes teamwork to be successful and teaches valuable lessons to our athletes that transcend the game of football,” DJFL organizers told the players in preparation for the drive. “To this end, we are asking each of you to help where you can to make this a successful and rewarding event for all and most importantly collect much needed non-perishable food items for those in need.” The food drive will provide an opportunity for these young athletes to give back to those in need, practice teamwork, and make a real difference for other kids and families in Lower Fairfield County. Donations can be brought to 1864 Post Road in Darien (behind St.
The Community Fund of Darien (TCF) invites all residents to join in the final evening of our “Community Dinner for a Cause” series on Saturday, June 20 to help improve the quality of life for our community. — an announcement from the Community Fund of Darien
Proceeds from this dinner will support mental health programs. The first two dinners raised nearly $27,000 to fight food insecurity and benefit the homeless population. Order a family meal prepared by the Darien Butcher Shop, which includes a bottle of wine and a craft beer provided by SipStirs, and the Community Fund of Darien will direct half your purchase to their local nonprofit partners providing mental health programs. TCF will provide free contact-less, doorstep delivery of your meal on Saturday, June 20th between 4 and 5 p.m.
The $150/per family (feeds 4-6) purchase, prepared by The Darien Butcher Shop, includes:
Dry-Rubbed, Smoked Beef Brisket and Herb-Roasted Chicken Legs & Thighs
Tomato salad with cucumber, celery, avocado, chickpeas & fresh herb vinaigrette
DBS’s Signature Macaroni and Cheese -OR- choose Gluten-Free Meal Option to receive DBS potato salad
Corn on the Cob, with butter
Strawberry Cake: yellow sponge cake with lemon curd, frosting and a side of strawberries in syrup -OR- choose Gluten-Free Meal Option to receive lacherin: layers of whipped cream, berries, lemon curd and meringue
Bottle of wine and a craft beer provided by SipStirs
Plus: 1 Raffle Ticket for a chance to win one of six family-friendly, outdoor games: giant Jenga, Kubb, USA cornhole set, KanJam, Spikeball or giant Connect-4! Orders must be placed by 5 p.m. on Saturday, June 13 at www.communityfunddarien.org. Enjoy on Saturday evening, or save your meal for Father’s Day on Sunday! Together, we can strengthen our community.
It is an annual tradition for a sea of red balloons to decorate Darien mailboxes every spring. In the past, these balloons, placed by members of OPUS for Person-to-Person, have signified support of P2P’s campership program, which sends over 400 children from low-income households to summer camp every summer. But this year, in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, everything is different. — an announcement from OPUS for Person-to-Person
With continued uncertainty about the duration of the COVID-19 crisis and with social distancing protocols potentially impacting the full operation of summer camp providers, P2P has had to keep their annual campership program on hold until there is more clarity about what the summer will hold. What is certain is that the families of the 400 children who would have been eligible for the program this summer are the most vulnerable in our community and have been the most disproportionately impacted by this crisis.
The Community Fund of Darien (TCF) invites all residents to join in a second special evening of dining “together” at home to fund programs aimed at improving the quality of life for our community. This dinner, held on Saturday, May 30, will benefit the homeless population and homelessness prevention efforts. The first event, held on May 9, raised nearly $17,000 to fight food insecurity. — an announcement from the Community Fund of Darien
Order a family meal provided by Palmer’s Catering, which includes a bottle of wine provided by SipStirs, and the Community Fund of Darien will direct half your purchase to their local nonprofit partners providing stop-gap services and immediate assistance to our most vulnerable neighbors. TCF will provide free doorstep delivery of your meal on Saturday, May 30 from 3:45 to 5 p.m.
The $150/per family purchase includes:
Balsamic Glazed Chicken Breast, Arugula & Tomato Salad, Dill Potato Salad, House-Made Herb Potato Chips and Assorted, Nut-Free Cookies for 4 to 6 people provided by Palmer’s Catering
Bottle of wine provided by SipStirs
Mini-football and flying disc for loads of family fun! Orders must be placed by 5 p.m. on Wednesday, May 27 at www.communityfunddarien.org.
Domestic Violence Crisis Center will go online this year to host its “Voices of Courage Virtual Spring Luncheon” from 11:45 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Thursday, May 21. The event’s keynote speaker is Rachel Louise Snyder, award-winning journalist and author of “No Visible Bruises: What We Don’t Know About Domestic Violence Can Kill Us.”
“The timing of her presentation is really poignant during the COVID-19 crisis, where we have seen so many reports of domestic violence victims being especially vulnerable because of stay-at-home orders,” said Suzanne Adam, DVCC’s executive director. — an announcement from the Domestic Violence Crisis Center
Snyder’s acclaimed book was named one of the New York Times “Top 10 Books of the Year,” National Book Critics Circle Award Finalist, and most recently a Los Angeles Times Book Prize finalist. “While we struggle with the COVID-19 pandemic, we need to recognize that there is a shadow pandemic of domestic violence happening behind closed doors,” Snyder said. “The UN estimates an additional 31 million victims of domestic violence globally during the next six months because of COVID-19; this number is alarming, certainly.
Person-to-Person (P2P) is calling on lower Fairfield County community to ensure the well-being of our neighbors during the pandemic by participating in P2P’s Food Drives. During the months of March and April, P2P has seen a 50% increase in its food assistance program. Meeting the increased need, P2P has provided groceries for more than 280,000 meals to more than 4,500 families. — an announcement from Person-to-Person
However, P2P is faced with a lack of food available for families, in part due to the cancellation of the annual National Association of Letter Carriers Stamp Out Hunger Food Drive. “Stamp Out Hunger is historically P2P’s largest annual food drive, bringing in an average of 68,000 pounds of food, enough food for 55,000 meals for families in need,” said Nancy Coughlin, CEO of Person-to-Person.
The biggest names in comedy are coming together to help health workers on the front lines of the COVID-19 pandemic with a special virtual comedy fest on Friday, May 1. The Covid Is No Joke comedy show will be a night of levity, laughter and community in support of frontline health workers—the heroes of the COVID-19 pandemic. — an announcement from Americares
The show will air LIVE on covidisnojoke.org and Americares YouTube channel at 8 p.m. EDT, benefitting Americares COVID-19 response. The star-studded event will feature a mix of sketches, stand-up comedy and heart-felt messages from:
Elizabeth Banks, Ike Barinholtz, Jack Black and Tenacious D, Wayne Brady, D’Arcy Carden, Kristin Chenoweth, Tom Cotter, Mackenzie Davis, Mark Duplass, Will Ferrell, Gal Gadot, Kyle Gass, Linda Hamilton, Chelsea Handler, Mindy Kaling, Kerri Louise, Jonathan Mangum, Patton Oswalt, Natalia Reyes, Adam Scott, Finn Straley, Paige Weldon, Jenny Yang and more. Americares board member and actor, director, producer Tony Goldwyn will host the one-hour event.
One Darien High School classmate, Doug Allen, is performing an online concert this Friday to benefit the Jesse Lewis Choose Love Movement, founded by another DHS classmate, Scarlett Lewis, and they both hope you’ll watch and listen. — an announcement from Corbin Cares
This special concert with Doug Allen, sponsored by Corbin Cares, runs from 7 to 8:30 p.m., Friday, April 24 on Zoom. Allen, born in Darien and a member of DHS’s first lacrosse team, is a Nashville based singer-songwriter who is quickly becoming known for his high energy, acoustic shows and rich voice. Often compared to a cross between Zac Brown & John Denver he’s an artist whose songs, killer stage presence and voice make you take notice. Along with having two successful albums and several singles available online, Doug has had songs featured in Universal Pictures and Lions Gate Films. He keeps busy playing over 200 shows a year in theaters and corporate events between LA, Chicago, Nashville, and New York.
The Corbin District and SIPSTIRS are pleased to co-sponsor our first virtual wine tasting to benefit Corbin Cares. A donation to Corbin Cares is suggested, but not required to participate. — an announcement from Corbin Cares
Corbin Cares is a charity launched in town to have deliveries of breakfasts, boxed lunches and dinners to seniors and others in need during the COVID-19 epidemic. The effort, which can always use contributions, is a collaboration between nonprofits, local businesses and town government departments. Darien seniors and others identified by the town Human Services Department are eligible to participate, as well as others in need in surrounding communities.
Update, Friday, April 17 — Figure skating legend Dorothy Hamill and two-time Olympic medalist Michelle Kwan are joining the biggest names in figure skating this Friday, April 17, for a livestream benefit event supporting Americares response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Japanese champions Miki Ando, Shizuka Arakawa, Yuka Sato and Fumie Suguri have also joined the roster of skating stars raising funds for Americares COVID-19 relief, along with three-time Olympian Todd Eldredge and World Champion pairs skating team Tai Babilonia and Randy Gardner. The special one-hour “Blades for the Brave” livestream hosted by Jason Brown and Gracie Gold, will air on BladesForTheBrave.org, Americares Facebook and Twitter feeds and on its YouTube channel at 8 p.m. EDT/5 p.m. PT. Viewers can support Americares COVID-19 response by making a donation on americares.org or by texting “BRAVE” to 80100 to make a $25 donation. Original article, April 7:
Olympic and World Champion figure skaters are coming together to help health workers on the front lines of the COVID-19 pandemic with a special fundraising event on Friday, April 17.
Grace Farms Alliance Against COVID-19 has distributed more than 150,000 N95 respirator masks — 30,000 more than announced on April 2 — and is poised to deliver an additional 150,000 to the front lines, including Connecticut hospitals, COVID-19 clinics and testing sites, first responders and skilled nursing facilities in local towns this week. — an announcement from Grace Farms Foundation
An additional 50,000 pieces of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), including surgical and disposable masks, coveralls, and goggles have also been delivered and are currently in use statewide. Despite the Alliance’s efficient supply chain infrastructure and large deliveries, significantly more PPE is required to fill the gap to protect front-line healthcare workers. HOW YOU CAN HELP
Grace Farms Foundation is actively seeking additional philanthropic support to ensure the Relief Fund continues to fill the need for PPE throughout the duration of the COVID-19 pandemic crisis. Anyone interested in supporting the Fund and learning about Grace Farms Foundation’s efforts can donating online by going to this Web page on the Grace Farms Foundation website.