SAGE Maine members from across the state participate in a virtual empowerment self-defense class for older adults facilitated by Prevention Action Change. The class helped them combat the winter doldrums while learning physical self-defense skills and building community. Courtesy of Equality Maine

PORTLAND & ELLSWORTH — The Maine Community Foundation’s Maine Charity Foundation Fund has awarded $82,500 to 11 nonprofit organizations that support community-based transportation programs, including changes in response to the pandemic, and efforts to keep older 60+ community members socially connected during a time of physical distancing.

Grant recipients include:

  • Equality Maine Foundation, Portland, to maintain SAGE Maine programming and statewide outreach efforts to keep LGBTQ+ older adults socially connected during a time of physical distancing
  • SeniorsPlus, Lewiston, to help fund the Community Help Line, a critical resource in heightened demand during the pandemic
  • United Way of the Tri Valley Area, Farmington, to forge new collaboration among diverse stakeholders to create new and improved options for transportation, focused on older adults of limited financial means and utilizing volunteers in Franklin County, Livermore, and Livermore Falls.

Established in 1921, the Maine Charity Foundation Fund was the state’s first community foundation, created to hold individual charitable funds and to distribute income from those funds. In 1993, the fund was transferred to the Maine Community Foundation, which continues the organization’s tradition of grantmaking.

The next deadline for applications is Sept. 15. For more details, visit www.mainecf.org or contact Director of Grantmaking Laura Lee at 207-761-2440 or llee@mainecf.org.

The full list of 2020 Maine Charity Foundation Fund grants:

  • Beacon Project, Islesboro, to provide safe transportation for residents to appointments on the mainland from Islesboro during the pandemic: $5,000
  • Catholic Charities Maine, Portland, to maintain and expand SEARCH, a companionship and transportation program for older adults, into unserved rural areas to reduce social isolation and improve connection to community: $10,000
  • Downeast Community Partners, Ellsworth, to provide rides for older community members in Washington and Hancock counties: $5,000
  • Equality Maine Foundation, Portland, to maintain SAGE Maine programming and statewide outreach efforts to keep LGBTQ+ older adults socially connected during a time of physical distancing: $8,000
  • In Her Presence, Portland, to make stressful home environments safe for older immigrant women by increasing knowledge through public health education and providing cultural foods: $7,500
  • Island Connections, Bar Harbor, to help make up for fundraising losses and support volunteer-based transportation program on Mount Desert Island: $7,500
  • Penobscot Nation Boys and Girls Club, Indian Island, to provide culturally appropriate social connection opportunities for elders who live alone and far apart: $8,500
  • People Plus, Brunswick, to help cover fundraising losses for expansion and increased capacity for growing Volunteer Transportation Network serving 566 homebound older adults in Brunswick region with rides, shopping, groceries/prescriptions: $10,000
  • SeniorsPlus, Lewiston, to help fund the Community Help Line, a critical resource in heightened demand during the pandemic: $6,000
  • The Opportunity Alliance, South Portland, to increase capacity of its Senior Companion Program to more adequately assist older adults and their caregivers to promote wellness and reduce isolation in Cumberland and York counties: $5,000
  • United Way of the Tri Valley Area, Farmington, to forge new collaboration among diverse stakeholders to create new and improved options for transportation, focused on older adults of limited financial means and utilizing volunteers in Franklin County, Livermore, and Livermore Falls: $10,000