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         A season of thanks
As we approach this Thanksgiving Season,
I would like to express great joy and deep gratitude for those of you who share our vision and support our mission. Sarah Ban Breathnach poignantly reminds us: “Both abundance and lack exist simultaneously in our lives, as parallel realities. It is always our conscious choice which secret garden we will tend.” Thank you for tending the garden of Mercy Connections. We are so grateful for your gifts. May our hearts be open to even greater abundance.
                                                         Dolly Fleming
Executive Director
SAVE THE DATE- May 4, 2017
May Luncheon 2016 collage
The next May Luncheon will be May 4, 2017, at the Sheraton Conference Center in Burlington, VT. Please save the date- event details will be shared in the coming months.
Getting Serious graduates another class

Our Women’s Small Business Program not only offers comprehensive business ownership classes, but also opportunities for women to meet with other entrepreneurial peers to determine if owning a business is the right step. Mary Johnson helped guide our recent offering of Getting Serious, a great opportunity to filter business ideas and readiness. Congratulations to these 15 women for asking big questions and exploring their dreams of self-employment. Many will go on to the semester-long class, Start Up: Comprehensive Business Planning. Start Up will be offered again in January 2017 and applications are now being accepted.

Register for next session of Getting Serious today
January 4, 11, 18
Wednesdays, 5:30-8:30 pm
Getting Serious will help you discover if business ownership is right for you, examine and expand your business idea(s), clarify your entrepreneurial and business related skills, and create an action plan for next steps. Contact Carmen Tall at or (802) 846-7081 to learn more and register today.
Contact Carmen Tall to learn more or visit our website to learn about our WSBP classes, tuition fees and to register for classes. 
Purchase your holiday gifts at Mercy Marketplace
Mercy Farm retreat group October 2016
Come buy your holiday gifts and support our participants at Mercy Marketplace!  
Saturday, December 10, 11 AM to 2 PM
Main Street Landing, 60 Lake Street, Burlington
Featuring homemade crafts, art and edibles made by Mercy Connections participants. This is an entrepreneurial initiative between our Education & Transition and Women’s Small Business Programs, with support from People’s United Community Foundation and the Community and Economic Development Office (CEDO). We are also grateful to Main Street Landing for the donation of the space.
If you are interested or know people who could benefit from our classes, contact  Anne Lezak, Director of Education and Transition Programs.
Another successful mentor training complete
Mentors at Picnic, Summer 2016 

The Vermont Women’s Mentoring Program is pleased to announce the graduation of 12 new mentor candidates, following 5 weeks of intensive training. The sessions culminated with the Vermont Department of Corrections volunteer training and tour at Chittenden Regional Correctional Facility. We wish to thank all our wonderful presenters, trainers and speakers, and a special thanks to the dedicated mentor volunteers who will be matched with a woman returning to community from prison.

The next mentor training session will begin Wednesday, February 1, 2017.
For more information on Justice and Mentoring work , contact Director of Justice and Mentoring, Pam Greene.
Community Engagement and Support

Pathways to Justice, Activism & Social Responsibility panel
Panelists at St. Mike's event

Staff member, Ashley Michelle Fowler, recently represented Mercy Connections on a panel at Saint Michael’s College. Students were provided with opportunities to learn more about careers and organizations, and explore options for meaningful engagement with the wider community while in college. The panel featured representatives from area organizations engaged in advocacy for justice in Vermont and beyond.

  Carmen Tall serves as guest business plan reviewer
Women's Small Business Program (WSBP) Director, Carmen Tall, recently served as a business plan reviewer for the Vermont Emerging Leader Program of the Small Business Administration. The seven-month executive education series is a federal training specifically tailored for small business executives poised for growth. To be considered, each entrepreneur’s business must have annual revenues of $400,000 or more, been in business for at least three years, and have employees. Local business leaders play a similar role in our WSBP class, Start Up: Comprehensive Business Planning.
Women’s Business Ownership and the Vermont Economy

CTS October 2016 report cover page
Mercy Connections staff and board members attended the recent unveiling of the 2016 Status Report: "Women’s Business Ownership and the Vermont Economy," from Change the Story at the Vermont Statehouse during the annual Women Business Owners Network conference. Mercy Connections applauds this study and will continue to be a significant partner in changing the narrative and economic vision for women business owners.

Upcoming Events

Holiday Lunch
Thursday, November 17, 12:00 pm

Mercy Marketplace
Saturday, December 10, 11:00 am

Women's Small Business Program
Start Up Graduation
Sunday, December 11, 11:00 am

Your gift to makes a difference.  

Nurturing Self-Sufficiency through Education, Mentoring, Entrepreneurship and Community
Our mailing address is:
255 South Champlain Street, Suite 8
Burlington, VT 05401 (802) 846-7063

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