More than 60 Maine nonprofits have received nearly $900,000 in grants for COVID-19 relief efforts from The Harvard Pilgrim Health Care Foundation, according to insurer Harvard Pilgrim Health Care.

In its initial round of funding starting in mid-March, the foundation awarded grants of $150,000 to Good Shepherd Food Bank, $60,000 to United Way of Eastern Maine, $25,000 to United Way of Greater Portland and $10,000 to Boys & Girls Clubs of Portland, it said.

Most organizations across the state received a $10,000 grant for supporting community needs during the pandemic, such as food access and meal delivery, services for older adults and immigrant families, social and community services, and emergency response, the foundation said.

“During these challenging times, it is critically important to support our communities and the people of Maine who need help,” Bill Whitmore, vice president of the Maine regional market for Harvard Pilgrim, said in a news release. “As part of our initial grant-making nearly two months ago, we made every effort to address the immediate needs facing nonprofit partners and communities throughout Maine, and we remain steadfast in our commitment to supporting them in the weeks and months ahead.”

Last week, the foundation announced a $60,000 grant to Cooking for Community and the YMCA of Southern Maine to coordinate with local restaurants to prepare and deliver 1,000 weekly meals to older adults and immigrant families in need in Portland, Biddeford, Freeport and New Gloucester, it said.

Created in 1980, the foundation supports Harvard Pilgrim’s mission to improve the quality and value of health care for the people and communities it serves, according to the release. In 2019, it awarded nearly $2.9 million in grants to 990 nonprofit organizations in the region.


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