Surpasses $300K in event’s history

SCARBOROUGH — Although the high-fives and accolades were ‘virtual’ for the second straight year, the impact of the $25,000 in grants provided by Town & Country Federal Credit Union is very ‘real’. At a special event, held “virtually” out of an abundance of caution, the credit union announced the 2021 grant recipients as determined through a month-long vote during October which resulted in more than 10,000 votes cast through the Town & Country FCU website.

In addressing all 25 of 2021’s non-profit nominees, David Libby, president and CEO of Town & Country FCU, said the pandemic has certainly made it even more challenging for non-profits to provide the same level of services and programs with less. However, so many non-profits, including all of you, have answered the call and found unique and creative ways to do more despite experiencing many traditional fundraising events and activities cancelled or significantly changed as a result of the pandemic. I applaud you for rising to the challenge and so much more. Our 2021 Better Neighbor Fund grants again take place at a time when so many local non-profits continue to be stretched and are struggling to survive. While the $25,000 we are awarding today will help our recipients, I would again make a pitch to our entire community to consider a contribution to a local non-profit and, in turn, keep our neighbors and neighborhoods strong and vibrant.”

Herb Blake, executive director of The Friendship House in South Portland, an organization that received a $5,000 grant, said, “This grant comes at a critical time for our organization. The work that Town & Country does in the community is incredible and greatly appreciated.” Other recipients echoed Blake about the “critical need for financial support facing many local non-profits right now.”

In 2010, Town & Country introduced the Better Neighbor Fund to celebrate the ideal of neighbors helping neighbors, a concept that has a long and rich tradition in Maine. The credit union has now awarded $300,000 to 100 charitable initiatives, to date.

Eight charitable organizations from an original finalist list of 25 nominees were awarded a share of $25,000 from the 2020 Better Neighbor Fund — three received $5,000 grants and five received $2,000 grants.

The 25 finalists were nominated in September, and during October, the public voted online for the project they felt was most deserving to receive one of the eight grants.

The winners (by location of their headquarters) of the 2021 Better Neighbor Fund grants include (all serve Cumberland and/or York Counties):

$5,000 Recipients
$5,000 Grant—Camp Sunshine (Casco) – this grant will support the family retreat program for families of children battling life-threatening illnesses.
$5,000 Grant—Friendship House (South Portland) – to update the kitchen of this residential recovery house with a new floor and oven.
$5,000 Grant—The Family Restored (Portland) – support a scholarship fund to provide recovery treatment to those suffering from substance abuse disorder.

$2,000 Recipients
$2,000 Grant—317 Main Community Music Center (Yarmouth) – support the organization’s ‘Raise the Barn’ campaign to help expand facility and community. music education for people of all ages and means.
$2,000 Grant—Greater Portland Family Promise (Portland) – provide support to low-income families facing eviction to stabilize their housing situation.
$2,000 Grant—Ronald McDonald House Charities of Maine (Portland) – support Adopt-A-Room program by funding two guest rooms at its Portland location for families of pediatric patients.
$2,000 Grant—Scarborough Land Trust (Scarborough) – will go towards helping to fund needed trail repairs at the Sewell Woods Preserve in Scarborough.
$2,000 Grant—Special Surfers (Saco) – fund a new equipment trailer to support a growing program that provides surfing for children and adults with special needs.

Libby reiterated the financial struggles many local non-profits are still facing. “Before we ‘leave’ today’s event, we recognize that the non-profit community needs not only financial assistance but, as health and safety protocols allow, volunteers, too. At Town & Country, our ‘local helping local’ promise spans well beyond financial services to include causes, programs and activities that make our neighborhoods thrive and where we live so special. We all need to continue to step up to make a difference.”

As Maine’s second largest credit union with nearly 40,000 members, Town & Country is a full-service financial institution offering a wide range of financial products and services to people who live, work, go to school or worship in Cumberland and York Counties. The credit union has over $500 million in assets, and is part of the second largest branch network in the country. To learn more, visit