Another focus is its giving circle. Called the Phil, it allows community members to contribute an annual amount — dues most recently were $1,000 per individual, $1,500 for a couple and $2,000 for a business — which in turn are distributed to community causes members decide by vote. In 2023, it led to $30,000 in grants to three different organizations in Vernon County.
“We feel like it was a huge success. We were excited, we were new, we just kind of went with it, didn’t look back or think about how it should go or could go,” Bishop says. “I think it was very successful. Now we have 26 members and have a goal of at least doubling that for this next year.”
And those folks — and the greater community — show support when it’s needed most.
“I think it’s a very supportive community for people who just deal with life,” says Steve Russ, a board member for the NVCCF and a local pastor. “I appreciate that. I get to see that happen to a lot of families, different non-recovery-type situations — perhaps they have a sudden loss of life, or cancer. Those kinds of things.
“Our community does a really good job rallying the troops and coming to people’s aid. That’s something I see.”