The Kent Community Fund recently hosted a resource workshop for representatives of 38 agencies and organizations providing social service assistance and health-related services to the Kent area and surrounding communities.

Joe Speranzo, a board member and longtime director of the former Housatonic-Shepaug United Way, moderated the discussion.

Participants included Kent First Selectman Bruce Adams, Kent social services director Jerrilynn Tiso, Center School social worker Monica Rodriguez, representatives of the New Milford Visiting Nurse Association and Hospice, New Milford and Sharon hospitals, Meals on Wheels and Greenwoods Counselling Referrals and local pastors.

A number of participants identified concerns or trends, such as increased co-pays for home care for low-income elders.

The Kent Community Fund was founded in 2006 as an outgrowth of a social services task force "to help individuals in Kent meet emergency needs" and to provide an opportunity for generous residents to help others through unexpected financial crises. The recent recession has increased those needs.

A total of 103 grants have been made since late 2006.

Last year, the fund provided 42 grants totaling $18,686 and supported the Kent Food Bank through the bulk purchase of low-cost food from the Connecticut Food Bank.

It also initiated a camp scholarship fund for children in need and sponsored seven children through the Back to School Clothes for Kids program.