As part of our support to the wider community, our church has two funds dedicated to helping those in financial need.
THE FLOYD DEXTER MEMORIAL COMMUNITY SERVICE FUND
Established in 1997, the Community Service Fund of the First Congregational Church in Thetford (FCCT), UCC, was renamed the Floyd Dexter Memorial Community Service Fund in 1999, honoring the longtime resident of Thetford Center who died that spring. As Pastor Tom Kinder said on that occasion, “Floyd’s acts of generosity and compassion in this community are too numerous to count. They were just part of the way he was, a direct result of his principles and his faith. He embodied the quality of neighborliness that represents Vermont at its best, and the love of neighbor that represents Christianity at its best. Every Christmas Eve we take a collection that we use to do just the kinds of things Floyd did. When we hear about people who are struggling, we use these funds to help them out. We have helped pay for heating homes in winter, for a child’s glasses so he could read the blackboard, and for psychiatric care for a child who was suicidal. We have been able to help people survive their hardest times and get back on their feet. We cannot end all the suffering, but we can do something to ease it. We can give as God and Jesus and Floyd gave.”
Over $16,000 was distributed in 2015 to over 50 individuals and families, as well as to discretionary funds established in local schools. The Floyd Dexter Fund also supports the Thetford Community Nurse and gives money to Safeline, the Orange County agency that assists victims of domestic abuse and violence, for help with client needs.
People who are having a hard time covering costs of shelter, food, medicine, fuel, electricity, car repairs or other necessary expenses may call the church at 785-2915 and will be referred to Eleanor Zue, our Calling and Caring Coordinator.
Contributions are greatly appreciated throughout the year, and can be made by check to FCCT, with Floyd Dexter Fund in the memo line.
THE ALICE FRANCISCO FUND
George Timothy Francisco (Timmy), son of Alice Franciso, late of Thetford, died unexpectedly at age three and a half on December 23, 1950. His death was the result of an allergic reaction to a sulfa drug used to treat a common infection. In his memory, his mother, Alice, set up a fund at FCCT to provide gifts and assistance for needy children at Christmas.
More recently, Jane Francisco and Mary Miller, daughters of Alice, have broadened the scope of the fund to provide assistance and enrichment opportunities for children throughout the year. “Support for a child or family experiencing an illness or disability or a camp experience are meaningful ways to honor both our brother and our mother.”