Healthy Acadia’s Downeast Partnerships for Success program is thrilled to announce the commencement of its fifth and final year of partner-awarded mini-grants for programs that benefit the health and well-being of youth. Seventeen new and continuing partners have been selected to receive funding for an exciting and diverse range of projects in communities across Downeast Maine.

Key objectives of Healthy Acadia’s Downeast Partnerships for Success program include increasing the capacity of schools and community-based entities to provide pro-social activities and vital mental and social-emotional health support for youth in our region, engaging youth in peer-based mental health and social-emotional supports, and encouraging parents and caregivers to increase quantity or quality of time spent with children.

In this fifth year, the nonprofit community health organization is excited to announce Among the notable initiatives funded this year, Pemetic and Deer Isle-Stonington Elementary Schools will focus on social-emotional learning and leadership skills.

The Downeast Rainbow Alliance, which has been awarded a mini-grant in each of the five years to help sustain their Traveling Rainbow Project, will continue to bring this wealth of information and resources to nearly every school in Washington County as well as an ever-growing number of community organizations, health centers, and community events. 

Camp Beech Cliff will use their grant award to integrate Teen Mental Health First Aid into their Counselor In Training program.

Women for Healthy Rural Living will offer expanded summer opportunities for youth to engage with the outdoors at Milbridge Commons Wellness Park. The youth programs were initiated during Year Two of PFS funding and are offered in partnership with Maine Outdoor School.

Downeast Coastal Conservancy Downeast Coastal Conservancy is partnering with Maine Outdoor School to host a third year of Forest Camp at the Machias River Preserve. For a second consecutive year, DCC will also offer “pop-up camps” on holidays, teacher in-service days, and school breaks to provide more opportunities for youth to get outdoors and explore. Additionally, the following groups will be engaged in the development of after-school and summer programming, including:

  • Maine Academy of Modern Music
  • Pembroke Elementary School
  • Cobscook Institute
  • Jonesport-Beals High School
  • Maine School Union 76 After School Program – Mariner’s Soar!
  • Maine School Union 76 After School Program – Vikings Soar!
  • Maine School Union 76 After School Program – Seahawks Strong!
  • Shead High School

Healthy Acadia eagerly anticipates the results of collaborative efforts of these projects, spanning from Eastport to Deer Isle and the areas in between, which will undoubtedly have a positive and lasting effect on our community’s young people and their families.

As they enter year five, Healthy Acadia has successfully awarded over 80 projects across Maine’s Washington and Hancock counties, engaging thousands of young people and their families. Over the course of the first four years of the PFS program, nearly 3,000 youth have had the opportunity to engage in activities within their communities that bolster protective factors and reduce risk factors associated with substance use. The positive impacts of these projects on local youth and families have been significant and the community response has been enthusiastic. Healthy Acadia is eagerly anticipating the engagement in and outcomes of the projects that these partners will initiate or continue this year.

For more information or inquiries about the Downeast Partnerships for Success program, contact Sara McConnell at

Healthy Acadia is a 501c3 nonprofit organization working to improve the health and well-being of communities in Washington and Hancock counties and across Maine. For more information about Healthy Acadia, visit

This project is supported by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services under Partnerships for Success Grant # 1H79SP081695. Learn more by visiting or by calling 877-SAMHSA-7.