About Us

START provides a safety net for families in crisis. It links Stoughton families with community resources and provides support in housing, health, employment and financial assistance.

START Values

  • All people, regardless of gender, class, ethnicity, age, disability and sexual orientation will have equal access to services. (We do not discriminate by age but only provide case management and financial support to those under 55.)
  • We respect the inherent worth, dignity and privacy of every individual.
  • We value the mind, spirit and body of those we serve.
  • Collaboration and partnerships strengthen safety nets for support.


START celebrated its tenth anniversary in 2011. In 2001 Pastor Sue D'Alessio, Stoughton United Methodist Church, pulled a group of people together and asked "How can we better support our neighbors in times of need?" Kelly Janda social worker worked three hours a week on a $3,000 budget from local churches. In 2012 Kris Gabert, worked 32 hours a week, in an office at the Stoughton Area Senior Center supported by a budget of $90,000. Now, in 2016 START Program Director, Cindy Thompson works full time at 40 hours per week on a budget of approximately $120,000. 

Significant in START's history is the role it played in 2005 and 2006 by providing support to tornado survivors. Three part-time case managers, assisted by the START Program Director, provided case management support. Of the 165 tornado survivors who requested support, 161 received financial grants from donated funds for a total of $311,000.

In 201 6 the START Program Director responded to 246 new contacts from Stoughton area residents in crisis. The program provided face-to-face assistance to 290 households. Of these, 188 households were supported with case management services (multiple visits with the Program Director addressing multiple barriers). Total financial assistance was $49,451. Households that received mortgage/rent and security deposit subsidies to prevent foreclosure or eviction totaled 104. Households that received utility assistance to prevent electricity, water or gas disconnection, or to assist with LP fills totaled 45. Households that received transportation assistance to ensure reliable access to employment and other resources totaled 11 in addition to referrals to other local transportation programs. Households that received support for health care needs totaled 10.

START is providing a safety net for families in crisis.


Stoughton area resource team staff

Program Director: Cindy Thompson, MSW, CAPSW (E-mail)

MSW Intern: Dorie Janssen

Administrative Assistant: Brooke Schmidt

Board of Directors

  • Teresa Feidt - President
  • Pastor Todd McVey - Vice President
  • Julie Incitti - Secretary
  • Karen Myers - Treasurer
  • Jessica Knutson - Director
  • Jeffrey Zarth - Director
  • Teresa Plumley - Director

Community Advisory Board

  • Jim Alonzo
  • Pat Brestar
  • Kay Davis
  • Steve Ehle
  • Klaire Gingen
  • Lisa Jackson
  • Srgt. Andrew Johnson
  • Paul Lawrence
  • Sharon Mason-Boersma
  • Mayor Donna Olson
  • Sharon Quale
  • Barbara Roe
  • Jeannine Shoemaker
  • Kathryn Vaughn
  • Meg Veek
  • Colleen Wermuth