The Waterville Rotary Club recently donated $500 to four local high schools to provide support to youth who are experiencing homelessness or other challenges that impact their learning and/or engagement in school.

Members of the club’s Community Services Committee delivered checks in person to each of the schools. These donations dovetail with the club’s focus the past two years on providing resources in the community to address food insecurity and/or lack of access to basic necessities, issues which have been exacerbated by the pandemic, according to a news release from the club.

Maine School Administrative District 49 in Fairfield plans to use the funds specifically for food, clothing or transportation. They also may use some of the funds to purchase sports equipment or materials for students that do not have means to purchase these items to participate in a sport or other activity.

Winslow High will use the funds to support its Raiders Closet. Non-perishable food and clothes will be purchased, as needed. In some cases, food-specific gift cards will be provided to families to purchase perishable items.

Messalonskee High in Oakland has an initiative that provides food for families for the weekend and snacks during the school day. They seek additional funds to provide for necessities that many take for granted in their daily lives, such as personal hygiene items, clothing, school supplies and food that can be prepared with minimal resources for those in temporary housing.

Waterville Senior High will use the funds to support its food pantry. It also may use some funds to purchase other necessary items for students, such as seasonal clothing.

All the representatives from the various schools expressed appreciation for this donation and the show of support for their most vulnerable students. The committee members enjoyed the opportunity to visit the schools, meet with staff and students, and hear about the ways that local schools are looking out for their students.

For more information about the Rotary, visit