The University of Maine Orono TRIO Upward Bound Program is a program designed to provide opportunities for students to succeed in precollege performance and to prepare them for higher education pursuits. We serve first generation and modest income high school students from different regions across the state of Maine. In our summer program, students are given volunteer experiences to connect and give back to local communities! 

This year, we are connecting with Black Bear Exchange at UMaine, the Caring Community Cupboard in Old Town, and the Bangor Humane Society. We recognize the growing need for supplies for these three organizations and we ask you, our community, for help.

On Monday, July 11, Tuesday, July 12, Monday, July 18, and Tuesday, July 19 from 1:30-4:30 p.m. our students will be stationed outside of Orono IGA to collect a variety of items.

Black Bear Exchange is a local service that distributes over 5,000 pounds of food per month to those who work and attend University of Maine, and they are currently completely out of stock of all food and clothing items. This means they are left to buy everything they need– everything. We are requesting donations of nonperishable food items and lightly used clothing! Please feel free to donate monetarily on their website, in which they request that all checks please be made out to the “University of Maine” so that they can be properly deposited and put back into this great resource! 

Caring Community Cupboard is a public food pantry in great need of all forms of cleaning supplies, such as laundry detergent, dish detergent, tin foil, ziplock bags, toilet paper and paper towels. They are currently looking to raise money for a heat pump to keep their pantry of nonperishable foods safe. If you would like to donate monetarily, please send checks to P.O. Box 226, Old Town, ME 04468. 

Bangor Humane Society is always looking for food donations for our fuzzy friends! With both cats, dogs, and other animals like rabbits, they would appreciate variations of both wet and dry food! Potty pads and litter would also be helpful! As another aspect of community service for our students, we are planning to make toys for the animals in the shelters. If you have cotton/hemp/sisal fabric that could be put to good use, please do not hesitate to donate them!

When donating to our students in person at Orono IGA, please inform us of which organization you’d like to donate to if you have a preference! Otherwise, we plan to distribute donations evenly throughout each location. Summer is an important time where many of these resources need further contribution to continue to help our community. We hope to see you there!