The Maine Community Foundation’s Community Building Grant Program is open and accepting applications from nonprofit and public organizations seeking funding for projects that strengthen communities.

According to a news release from the foundation headquartered in Ellsworth, the 2021 Community Building Grant Program will focus on funding to build community resilience during the COVID-19 pandemic, with changes to program criteria, priorities, and types of funding. Priority will be given to projects or organizations that support people at higher risk to be negatively impacted by COVID-19.

Two informational Zoom sessions for grantseekers will review program changes for community-building grants: Tuesday, Dec. 8, noon-1 p.m., and Thursday, Jan, 14, noon-1 p.m. To sign up, email [email protected].

The deadline for applying is Feb. 15. A volunteer committee of Kennebec County residents and community leaders reviews grant applications and makes recommendations for funding. Application, guidelines and a list of 2020 grants are available at mainecf.org.

In 2020, the Kennebec County Committee awarded grants to four nonprofit organizations, including:
• Boys & Girls Club of Augusta, for teen driving program, designed to enhance driver’s education and help teenagers become better, safer drivers;
• Capital Area New Mainers, to increase visibility and expand programming by creating a welcoming community hub at the Augusta Multicultural Center; and
• Waterville Creates!, to develop one unified website for Waterville Creates! and its divisions (Maine Film Center, Waterville Opera House, Common Street Arts) with a comprehensive event calendar.

Established in 2018, the Kennebec County Fund provides permanent support to nonprofits in the region. A $250,000 challenge from anonymous donors will match 1:1 any contributions to the Kennebec County Fund through the end of 2020.

Those who would like more information about the fund can contact Foundation Officer Cate Cronin at 1-207-542-2665 or [email protected].