Outreach Report

There are so many wonderful aspects to being a member of the Siasconset Union Chapel community. Certainly, near the top of the list is knowing that, through the generosity of so many parishioners, the Chapel is giving more than ever to those in need on our very special island through its outreach program. In fact, the Chapel is likely the fourth or fifth largest donor to the Nantucket community.

The mission of the Chapel’s Outreach Committee is to provide support for “health and human services on Nantucket and beyond.” Lately, the needs have been so great locally that we have not looked beyond; although in the past, we have donated to such humanitarian groups as World Central Kitchen. However, increasing inflation, the scarcity of affordable housing for islanders, and the ongoing ripple effects of the pandemic that disrupted so many livelihoods have focused our attention on island non-profits.

In 2022, we funded 19 island non-profits, providing money for housing, fuel and food assistance, professional support for teachers, scholarships for small leaners, travel monies for health reasons, helping homeless and immigration resource centers, safety form abuse, and after-school resources for teenagers. We are so proud of the work they do: A Safe Place, Boston Med Flight, Community School Summer Boost Program, David Glidden Travel Fund, Fairwinds, Habitat for Humanity, Immigration Resource Center, Marla Lamb Travel Fund, Nantucket Boys and Girls Club, Nantucket Food Fuel and Rental Assistance, Nantucket Star, Nantucket Warming Place, Our House, Palliative & Supportive Care of Nantucket Foundation, St. Paul’s Laundry Love, St. Paul’s Meals Mission, Rising Tide Preschool, Small Friends, and The Community Foundation – The Nantucket Fund.

And, they let us know what it means to them: “Your donation is a burst of hope for our community members that are experiencing insecurity.” “Our teams would not have the resources to provide expert, efficient and compassionate critical care medical transport without thoughtful donors like you.” “Your generous donation…enables the unsheltered to stay in a hotel when the weather is 32F or below.” “Your recent donation guarantees that we are able to continue to provide trauma informed care in the aftermath of abuse as well as prevention programs to try to eliminate future abuse from occurring.” “I would like to extend our heartfelt thanks for your generous donation towards our work supporting the special needs population on Nantucket.” “We have noted that your donation is for tuition assistance for our families who need this extra help.” “Your thoughtful and generous donation will support Nantucket high school youth after-school.” ‘Your donation helps us to provide evidence-based professional mental health counseling…and other critical programs to our island community, regardless of ability to pay or insurance status.” “Please extend our sincere thanks to the entire Chapel Board for their confidence in us.”

Funds for Outreach come from collections on two summer Outreach Sundays – one in July and the other in August. Last summer, we also raised money with our third annual Lobster Lalapalooza and a raffle of another beautiful needlepoint rug. This year, we have a few other fundraising ideas in mind; so stay tuned.

The bottom line is that we could not begin to help our valued neighbors and this special island community without your support and commitment. We look forward to reuniting with you and celebrating another summer with our beloved Chapel community.

Eileen Shields West,
Chairman Outreach committee

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