News

Help with Health Coverage

Navigating public health systems doesn't have to be painful

Need help to get Medicaid or health insurance on the public exchange? Having difficulty with the process of renewing your benefits or adjusting your coverage? SEVCA’s Health Navigator is available to help families and individuals in Windham or Windsor Counties get or keep the coverage they need to stay healthy and/or obtain treatment.

Since the introduction of the Affordable Care Act in Vermont, Health Navigators have made an important contribution to expanding health insurance coverage for many formerly uninsured individuals and families. Navigators were accessible in a number of locations throughout the state, and helped people to enroll in appropriate VT Health Connect programs as well as Medicaid, and to assist with renewals or changes in circumstances. In the current policy environment, in which the Affordable Care Act has been under attack, there has been very little funding to provide outreach and assistance to the many people who continue to need advice about their health care coverage.

Thanks to a grant from the Fanny Holt Ames and Edna Louise Holt Fund, SEVCA has been able to continue our Health Navigation program, helping hundreds of people access or maintain their coverage. Our Health Navigator, Alicia Moyer, is available to help the many people who become eligible for a Health Connect plan or Medicaid, lose eligibility and need an advocate, or who must transition to a different health coverage option based on changes in circumstances. The following quotes from people we’ve assisted show how much SEVCA’s clients value this service:

  • “Alicia was really helpful. I am SO grateful….I felt immediately at ease and comfortable. Please know how incredibly valuable this program is for helping us navigate the complex health care system.”
  • “I recently lost my job and health insurance—then I saw an article in the newspaper about SEVCA’s new Health Navigator. I was able to reach her easily by phone and we made an appointment to meet in Brattleboro. Alicia was friendly and so helpful and patient. She was able to help my husband and me set up health insurance right there during that meeting. It was great…thank you!”
  • “Alicia truly went above and beyond trying to help me qualify for the best health insurance possible and then helped me sift through the details of each plan to ensure I would receive the best fit for my needs. She spent a lot of time making sure I could access health care without delay and I could not have had a better experience!”
  • “We could not have done this on our own. The help we got not only made the process of selecting an insurance plan almost easy, but also saved us a lot of money.”
  • “I felt like I was between a rock and a hard place until I had the opportunity to speak with Alicia Moyer. Not only did she display a large amount of compassion towards my situation, but she took immediate action to set me in the right direction and (show me) how to utilize the proper resources. I learned that I was eligible to receive a 50% discount for something very important that I need to undergo medically. I am extremely grateful for Alicia’s assistance.”

Those in need of help with accessing health coverage through Medicaid or Health Connect can make an appointment with Alicia at locations in Westminster, Brattleboro, and White River Junction—call us at (800) 464-9951. She is also available for phone consultations.

Free Solar Energy Assistance Now Available from SEVCA’s Community Solar for Community Action project

SEVCA CS4CA flyer print

Southeastern Vermont Community Action’s (SEVCA’s) new 110 kW solar array, located at its Westminster office, is now complete, and the organization will soon be selecting approximately 50 households with low incomes and high energy burdens to receive free credits from the power produced by the array. Households in Windham and Windsor Counties that have a Green Mountain Power account are invited to apply during an open application period up until July 15. SEVCA will then select program participants according to criteria that include household income, energy burden, and housing cost burden. The households selected will receive credits on their GMP electric bill based on the power produced by the solar array, which will reduce their electricity costs. Benefits are expected to amount to approximately $400/year per household.

SEVCA has worked in partnership for over a year with the Minnesota-based Rural Renewable Energy Alliance (RREAL) to develop this Community Solar for Community Action (CS4CA) project, as part of the national Solar in Your Community Challenge, a competition sponsored by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE). SEVCA’s is one of several community solar projects RREAL developed during the competition period, and RREAL was awarded the runner-up prize in the competition. Catamount Solar, a Vermont-based, employee-owned solar contractor, was selected to install the array.

SEVCA’s project is expected to produce an estimated 119,500 kWh of electricity annually, and will help address the excessive energy burdens that households with low incomes face each year. Complementing its home weatherization and crisis fuel programs, CS4CA will be an important new tool in SEVCA’s efforts to ensure that all vulnerable households can meet their energy needs now and in the future.

To find out more, contact Daniel Quipp at 802 254 2795, ext. 103, email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call (800) 464-9951 and speak to the receptionist. 

SEVCA would like to thank all of its project supporters, including the U.S. Department of Energy, the Windham Regional Commission, the Thompson Trust, VLITE, the Vermont Community Foundation, and the dozens of other contributors who made this project possible.

August, 2019 Update: Please note that the application process has concluded and our subscribers have been selected. Thanks to everyone who showed an interest in the project! We will occasionally open up our waitlist, and will publicize this opportunity when it is available.

Head Start Is Accepting Applications for 2019-20 School Year— Including Spaces for a Re-opened Head Start Site in Windsor

SEVCA’s Head Start program provides comprehensive early childhood education and family support at no cost to low-income children and their families in Windsor County, each year serving 80 – 90 children ages 3- to 5-years old at locations in Windsor, White River Junction, Springfield, and Chester. Since 2015, when the lease for its location at the Old Windsor Firehouse was not renewed due to the sale of the building, the Windsor program has been looking for a new home. SEVCA is now excited to announce that it recently purchased the former Masonic Hall at 4 Dunham Avenue in Windsor, VT to serve as a permanent Head Start site. The new Head Start center will open in September 2019, after planned renovations are complete.

The Head Start program in Windsor is now accepting applications for the 2019-20 school year. Children must be at least age 3 by September 1 to enroll. The program offers high quality classroom instruction and child development activities six hours her day, 5 days per week (M – F, 8 AM – 2 PM). Families interested in applying for the program should contact Lori Canfield at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. or (802) 885-6669 ext. 8102 for more information.

The search for a new Head Start site in Windsor was an extended one. After its lease at the former location in Windsor was not renewed, SEVCA determined that purchasing a building was the best option to ensure a permanent location in this community. However, finding a suitable property proved challenging, given program requirements and the high safety standards that a building serving as a preschool needed to meet. The building eventually purchased had to undergo a rigorous assessment process, and it has been undergoing renovations to ensure the space complies with all building codes and applicable Head Start, state and local regulations. SEVCA received a grant from the Department of Health and Human Services, the federal agency that administers Head Start, to cover most of the renovation costs, with a matching contribution from the Vermont Building Communities Grant program.

We would like to thank numerous people and agencies within the community that have continued to support our Head Start program, including Mt. Ascutney Hospital (Jill Lord and Dr. Mary Binder), the Windsor Resource Center, WIC, and the Windsor Zoning office (Bob Haight and other members), said Lori Canfield, SEVCA’s Head Start Program Director. We would also like to thank our realtor, Amy Messina, for helping us find a ‘forever home’ for our Head Start program in Windsor!

Head Start helps children reach their full potential by providing age-appropriate developmental opportunities, educational and developmental assessments, and health screenings. Head Start supports the entire family, providing parents with the information and support to become effective parents as well as to work toward their own goals that enable them to most effectively support their family’s well-being.

In addition to the Windsor site, a full-day program is available in Springfield (M – F, 7:30 AM – 5:00 PM), and the other Head Start centers in Chester and White River Junction offer a 5-day, 30 hours/week program. Applications are being accepted for all locations at this time.

Fun, Fitness, and Fundraising at SEVCA's Benefit Golf Tournament

On June 14, SEVCA’s “CHIPPING AWAY AT POVERTY” Benefit Golf Tournament will swing into action at Brattleboro Country Club. Participants can have fun and win prizes while raising money to benefit their neighbors in need! Players have the chance to win the Hole-in-One Grand Prize of a brand new Subaru Forrester, generously sponsored by Fenton Family Dealerships/Subaru of Keene, a $5,000 cash prize in the Putting Contest, and a host of other valuable prizes. Tournament Co-Sponsors are: Mutual of America, Springfield Housing Authority, and Sunset Tool, Inc. Find out about all the area businesses and individuals who have helped to sponsor this event by visiting SEVCA’s website: www.sevca.org/golf-tournament. Last minute sponsorships may be available! Contact Becky Himlin, Director of Planning and Development, at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or *802)722-4575 ext. 163 to find out more. Proceeds will benefit Windham and Windsor County residents with low incomes who are impacted by emergencies, financial hardships, unemployment, and other crises.

“If SEVCA hadn’t provided heat this winter, I might not be alive to write this.”

SEVCA Client