December Note from Gather

Our first Thanksgiving at Gather was very special. You can read about it in this really nice article in our local newspaper.

This fall we saw a new tent encampment pop up in the downtown of Middlebury. It created a bit of a stir when some of the people living there got stressed out and did some local damage to cars and scared people away from downtown businesses. Business owners, nonprofit workers, and the police circled up to figure out how to help with compassion. Everyone involved had the desire to respond fairly to the diverse interests of the downtown community. One solution has been Gather. We’ve been welcoming people here and creating a space that is nonjudgmental, warm, orderly, clean, friendly, and kind. We are clear about our core values of safety and hospitality. As it gets colder, we expect more and more of our neighbors will join us in our community living room – to just chat, enjoy a hot drink or meal, nap, play games, listen to music or be part of a mindfulness circle. Each of these gatherings helps us to feel more united, less separate from each other, and to celebrate the gift of each person.

As the weather turns cold we would like to offer hot meals every day. If you are interested in providing an oven-ready casserole, please reach out to Colleen. Colleen will provide you with details about what size dish to use, how to label it, when to drop it off, etc.

Speaking of needing some help, we can always use more hosts, especially as our guest numbers increase. Being a host bring so much joy! We try to have three hosts at Gather whenever we are open. If you are interested in participating in an orientation to begin serving as a host, we encourage you to come in to Gather a few times, to get a sense of what it is like, and then email Colleen.

As we look toward the holidays, please consider supporting Gather through your volunteer efforts or financial gifts – or both!



On Sunday January 14th, all Gather Hosts are invited to a dinner to celebrate and thank you! We will have a brief council discussion first and then a convivial dinner.. It will be held at Gather from 3:00 to 6:30 pm.
Then, the next morning, on Monday January 15th, Joshin will host a brief time for reflection and retreat for all current Hosts and anyone interested in serving as a Gather Host. That too will be held at Gather and will be from 9 am to noon.
If you can join us, or need further information, please contact Colleen at

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