Have You Started Planning for Summer?  
A Message from Richard Porth          
President/CEO of United Way of Connecticut  
children_camping.jpg It's not too early to start researching and registering for summer camps. The official State of Connecticut website for children, ConneCT Kids , recently published their 2017 Summer Planning Guide. This guide includes advice for parents and teens about finding summer jobs, volunteer opportunities, summer safety tips and links to summer programs throughout the state. 
In addition to ConneCT Kids' new summer guide, 2-1-1 Child Care maintains a comprehensive directory of camps in Connecticut.

The 2-1-1 Child Care search engine allows you to find camps in any area of the state and filter the search results based on criteria such as: hours of operation, the accreditations of the camp, cost, and opportunities for financial assistance. C lick HERE to  download an informational guide to summer camps. You can  also contact 2-1-1 Child Care online or by dialing 2-1-1 and selecting option 2.

Renters Rebate Program
From April 1st to October 1st Connecticut renters who are elderly or totally disabled and do not exceed certain income limits can receive rebates on the rent they have paid. Rebates can be up to $900 for married couples and $700 for single persons. The renters' rebate amount is based on a graduated income scale and the amount of rent and utility payments (excluding telephone) made in the calendar year prior to the year in which the renter applies. Applications may be filed at the town social service agency or the Assessor's Office.
Read 2-1-1's eLibrary paper to learn more about who's eligible for the renters' rebate program and click HERE for a list of locations where applications can be filed in your town or city.

National Volunteer Month

Find your local soup kitchen April is National Volunteer Month. Volunteers provide assistance to those in need through a variety of vital services that help improve life in the broader community. 

Developed as a collaboration between United Ways and volunteer centers in the state, the Volunteer Connecticut website  can help you find opportunities to give back this month and every month. Volunteers can also dial 2-1-1 or visit 211ct.org  and use the search feature to find volunteer opportunities in Connecticut.
Be Aware of Ticks and Know the Warning Signs of Lyme Disease

As the weather continues to warm, an increased awareness of ticks and the symptoms associated with Lyme disease is important. The Connecticut Agriculture Experimentation Station recently expressed concern over the number of ticks in Connecticut and a "higher-than-average" rate of ticks carrying Lyme disease.

Tips for preventing Lyme disease:
  • Avoid tall grass and over-grown, brushy areas.
  • Stay in the middle of trails when hiking in the woods.
  • Wear light-colored clothing to allow ticks to be more  easily seen.
  • Examine yourself, your children, and pets for ticks when returning indoors.
  • Remove found ticks as soon as possible.
It takes approximately 24 hours for a tick to infect a person with Lyme disease. The longer an infected tick stays on your skin the greater the chance it will pass the Lyme bacteria on to you. If you find a tick remove it immediately and be on the lookout for Lyme disease symptoms such as rash (sometimes in the shape of a bulls-eye) fever, muscle aches or fatigue.
Contact your doctor if any of these symptoms occurs and visit the Department of Public Health Lyme Disease page for more information.