The Maine Community Foundation has awarded nearly $500,000 in grants to assist COVID-19 response efforts across the state, according to a news release from the foundation based in Ellsworth.

The foundation’s COVID-19 Emergency Response Fund supports community-based organizations working with the viral outbreak and its consequences. Maine nonprofit organizations that received grants include area agencies on aging, community action programs, homeless shelters, and other community-based organizations that are providing food to those in need.

Community Action Programs receiving grants include:
• Aroostook County Action Program, Presque Isle, $15,000;
• Community Concepts, Lewiston,$20,000;
• Downeast Community Partners, Ellsworth, $15,000;
• Kennebec Valley Community Action Programs, Augusta, $20,000;
• Midcoast Maine Community Action, Bath, $20,000;
• Opportunity Alliance/PROP, South Portland, $20,000;
• Penquis CAP, Bangor, $20,000;
• Waldo Community Action Partners, Belfast, $15,000;
• Western Maine Community Action, East Wilton, $15,000; and
• York County Community Action Corporation, Sanford, $20,000.

Area Agencies on Aging receiving grants include:
• Aroostook Agency on Aging, Presque Isle, $5,000;
• Eastern Area Agency on Aging, Brewer, $15,000;
• Seniors Plus, Lewiston, $15,000;
• Southern Maine Agency on Aging, Scarborough, $15,000; and
• Spectrum Generations, Augusta: $15,000.

Food Pantries and Homeless Shelters receiving grants include:
• Bangor Area Homeless Shelter, $8,000;
• Bread of Life Ministries, Augusta, $6,000;
• City of Portland Oxford Street Shelter, $10,000;
• Emmaus Homeless Shelter, Ellsworth, $5,000;
• Good Shepherd Food Bank, Auburn, $75,000;
• Hope Haven Gospel Mission, Lewiston, $6,400;
• Knox County Homeless Coalition, Rockport, $4,400;
• Preble Street, Portland, $10,000;
• Rumford Group Homes, Rumford, $6,000;
• St. Mary O’Donnell Shelter, Presque Isle, $8,600;
• Tedford Housing, Brunswick, $3,200;
• Western Maine Homeless Outreach, Farmington, $3,000; and
• York County Shelter Programs, Alfred, $10,000.

Wabanaki Tribes receiving grants include:
• Aroostook Band of Micmacs, Presque Isle, $6,000;
• Houlton Band of Maliseets, Littleton, $8,000;
• Passamaquoddy Tribe, Pleasant Point, $13,000;
• Passamaquoddy Tribe, Indian Township, $9,000; and
• Penobscot Nation, Indian Island, $14,000.

Community Organizations Supporting Immigrants, Refugees and Asylum-seekers receiving grants include:
• Angolan Community Association, Portland, $1,000;
• Congolese Community Association of Maine, Portland, $1,500;
• In Her Presence, Portland, $1,000;
• Maine Immigrant and Refugee Services, Lewiston, $1,500;
• Mano en Mano, Milbridge, $2,500;
• New England Arab American Organization, Portland, $1,000;
• Presente Maine, Portland, $500; and
• Somali Bantu Community Association, Lewiston, $2,500.

Funding for the COVID-19 grants came from an unrestricted fund at the Maine Community Foundation, a MaineCF fund dedicated to food security, and additional contributions from donor-advised funds. The grants were awarded proactively and not through an application process.

“While this is a challenging time for all Maine people, it’s a matter of actual survival for some. If ever there was a time to help our vulnerable neighbors, this is it,” said Steve Rowe, Maine Community Foundation president and CEO, according to the release. “There are many ways to help. You can give directly to nonprofit organizations responding to human hardships in your community. You can also donate to the COVID-19 emergency response funds at the Maine Community Foundation and at your local United Way organization. Thank you for caring and sharing,” Rowe said. “We offer special thanks to those currently serving on the front lines to protect vulnerable residents in communities throughout Maine.”

Donations to the foundation’s COVID-19 Fund may be made online at maincf.org.

Headquartered in Ellsworth, with additional personnel in Portland, Dover-Foxcroft, and Mars Hill, the foundation works with donors and other partners to provide strong investments, personalized service, local expertise, and strategic giving to improve the quality of life for all Maine people. To learn more about the foundation, visit mainecf.org.

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