Thanks to Caring Neighbors Like You

Photo: First Congregational Church of South Portland, ME Housing Rehabilitation program volunteers

April 2018

At last, the signs of spring are unmistakable—even here in Downeast Maine. Most of us shake our heads and mutter about this winter; it has felt harder than most.

It’s no surprise that Maine winters become a potent symbol of tough times. But as spring nears, we can shed our long johns, parkas, and heavy boots. Life no longer feels so threatening.

Please take a moment, however, and remember that for many among us, hardships remain. Spring breezes won’t blow their storm clouds away. Would you send a gift to lessen their hardships?

For families struggling to put food on the table, the approach of summer means kids won’t have breakfast and lunch at their schools. No Mission backpacks of food will come home on Fridays. Together, we can fill in the gaps.

For those who can’t afford a car, or who no longer drive, it doesn’t matter that roads are no longer icy and treacherous. Their loneliness continues. With your help, the Mission will visit, bringing a warm smile, company, and comfort.

Photo: EdGE kids learning from local scientists how to extract DNA from strawberries

For kids who rely on school to stay busy and connect with their friends, summer can be a time of idleness and isolation. With your help, the Mission’s EdGE program provides fun, adventure, and social activities.

Thanks to caring neighbors like you, the Mission has been the helping hand, smiling face, and reliable friend for 113 years. We have been where we were needed, when we were needed, listening with heart and acting in compassion.

Your generosity in action: The food pantry stays open. The community gardens provide fresh veggies, the fun of shared gardening, and sweet taste of food grown by one’s own hand. Our farmers’ markets will start up again when it’s time to harvest, and our food van will make its rounds to isolated people, delivering food and the human connection so many starve for.

Food Pantry
Photo: Downeast Campus director Wendy Harrington (right) and friend review a fresh vegetable and fruit selection in the Food Pantry.

Because winter is never too far away, volunteers will be traveling to Downeast to weatherize, repair, and rehab houses so next winter will be safer and more comfortable.

Of course, the Sunbeam and its crew will be just as busy with its schedule of trips to the islands the Mission serves. This means crucial well-being checks at homes around the islands, medical appointments via Sunbeam’s telemedicine suite, and social gatherings aboard for neighbors to share news and rekindle friendships while breaking bread together.

Photo: Island Health director Sharon Daley (foreground) and Island Outreach director Douglas Cornman (background near staircase) listening to islanders and health providers in Sunbeam salon.

I am so grateful for your generosity. You share in the Mission. Will you renew your support with a generous donation today?

Together, we’re helping people in ways that are simple, yet profound—the glow that comes from a full belly of nutritious food; the spark of confidence that comes from learning a new skill; the glimpse of a future that comes from a wider view of the world; the quiet pleasure of feeling cared for—and I thank you.

Sincerely yours,

Scott Planting
President