Michele Prince, Waterville Rotary Community Services chair, with Katherine Harvey of the Alfond Youth and Community Center. (Courtesy photo)

WATERVILLE — The Waterville Rotary Club raised funds over the past year in order to support local schools, churches, and other organizations providing food and basic necessities to our neighbors in need.  Grants were awarded to 13 local organizations who work hard to ensure that no one goes hungry or lacks basic living supplies in our community.  

The Club became acutely aware of the issue of food insecurity during the pandemic and used discretionary funds to provide support to local organizations through a mini grant process.  Last year’s President Jeff Melanson chose food insecurity as his “President’s” project, directing club funds toward the grant program. In addition, members raised $12,000 during a club activity in the spring to fund this initiative for a third year.  

Current President John Dalton has been supportive of the grant program as well, working with the Community Services Committee to implement it again this year.  In December, the Committee made the decision to award grants of varying amounts to all thirteen applicants. Checks were presented to the groups at recent club meetings at the Best Western in Waterville. 

According to Dalton, “we appreciate all that the various groups are doing to address food insecurity in our community. Many of them operate on a shoestring budget so we know that our support can go a long way to assist, especially with rising costs in the current economy.”  

Grants were awarded to the following organizations:

  • Winslow Community Cupboard
  • Mid-Maine Homeless Shelter
  • Alfond Youth and Community Center
  • Starfish Village
  • Northern Light/Inland Hospital 
  • Mid-Maine Technical Center
  • Albert S. Hall School
  • Waterville Junior High School
  • Messalonskee High School
  • Waterville Area Essentials Closet
  • Waterville Area Soup Kitchen
  • Oakland Food Pantry
  • Vassalboro Food Pantry Station

The organizations are very grateful for the funding. According to Tricia Moran, school counselor at Albert S. Hall School, “Having the support of Waterville Rotary means so much to our school and families. These gifts will enable us to keep providing families with nourishing food that they need and appreciate. The need is great, and we can’t keep providing without community support. Thank you for your generous gifts. “

For more information about the Waterville Noontime Rotary, visit the website at watervillerotary.com.