Farewell to Long-time Advocate, Ann Collins
For nearly 20 years, youth in the Newport region have had Ann on their side, helping connect them with shelter, food, and educational and employment supports, and more importantly, always being there with a smile on her face, a warm greeting, and unfaltering optimism and can do attitude.
This week Ann Collins will retire. She came on board with Northeast Kingdom Community Action (NEKCA) as an Americorps member in the late 90's. From there she quickly became an essential member of the team and joined NEKCA as the Transitional Housing Coordinator, working to support young people 16-23 who were struggling with the transition to adulthood and lacked safe and permanent homes.
Through her many years, Ann has directly housed more than 560 youth and supported hundreds more through her widely acclaimed life skills curriculum. She has built community partnerships that enhanced supports available to the youth she worked with, and she had informed and influenced youth serving practices across the state through her commitment to VCRHYP's Best Practice Committee.
"She has had an incredible impact on the youth in this area. She has been the best resource any young person could ask for; a true asset to our organization and the years of experience and strength based work ethic is irreplaceable. Ann's shoes are going to be hard to fill" said Kathy Griffin, Director of Parent Child Center, Outreach at NEKCA. "We at NEKCA and the community will surely miss her but we wish her the best in her new journey and where that may lead her!"
Click the link below to hear more about the impact Ann has had directly from one of the youth she supported.
Everyone across the Coalition wishes Ann a happy and restful retirement, though knowing her, we doubt she will stay still for too long! Deepest thanks to her for years of service, for helping us all grow and learn, and for her commitment to her community. Ann, you will be missed!