Howard Center and Vermont Old Cemetery Association team up to restore a Home for Destitute Children


BURLINGTON, VT—The Howard Center is pleased to announce a partnership with the Vermont Old Cemetery Association (VOCA) to complete the restoration of Lakeview Cemetery. The project includes restoring and resetting the headstones of children who lived at the Home for Destitute Children in the late 1800s. A precursor to today’s Howard Center, the Home was founded in 1865 first at 447 Main Street in Burlington, then on Winooski Avenue, and later on the present site of Price Chopper/Market 32 ​​on Shelburne Road along Home Avenue which would have taken its name from the Home for Destitute Children. The headstones on the cemetery grounds were donated in part by Louisa Howard, a generous local benefactress in the 1800s, who also donated the Louisa Howard Chapel in Lakeview Cemetery to the City of Burlington.

A combined group of a dozen volunteers from both organizations will complete the restoration on Saturday, September 10, 2022. VOCA President Tom Giffin said, “Our members are thrilled to be able to work with Howard Center to complete this restoration. It is always an honor to do this work and especially meaningful to revitalize children’s memorials.

VOCA was founded in 1958 to encourage the restoration and preservation of neglected and abandoned cemeteries in the state of Vermont. The organization completed more than a dozen projects this year.

Howard Center is Vermont’s largest designated agency and provides community mental health, addictions, and developmental services in Chittenden County and several other Vermont counties. Howard Center CEO Bob Bick said, “We are grateful to the members of VOCA for their support in bringing this restoration to fruition. The Home for Destitute Children is an important part of the Howard Center’s history and our shared Vermont history and we are thrilled to have the opportunity to honor the children’s memory in this way.

For additional historical information, contact Denise Vignoe at 802-488-6912; 802-318-2860; [email protected] or visit the Special Collections section of the David W. Howe Memorial Library at the University of Vermont.
ABOUT HOWARD CENTER: Howard Center has a long and storied history as a trusted supplier in the community. With a heritage of over 155 years, we provide progressive, compassionate, high-quality care and support to those in need. Today, we offer a range of exemplary mental health, addictions and lifelong development services. As Vermont’s largest social service organization, our 1,600 employees help more than 19,000 people each year in more than 60 locations across Vermont in conjunction with hundreds of community partners. The Howard Center’s 24/7/365 crisis service, First Call for Chittenden County, is available to meet the needs of Chittenden County children, adults, and families in crisis by calling 802-488-7777. Help is here. A United Way of Northwestern Vermont funded agency.

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