For 35 years, the Maine Community Foundation’s Piscatquis County Fund has awarded nearly $ 1 million in grants to nonprofit organizations working to improve the quality of life in the region. The county fund’s anniversary on how to file bankruptcy, as well as those serving Aroostook and Washington counties, was celebrated in a late afternoon presentation on Zoom on September 7.
For 35 years, the Maine Community Foundation’s Piscatquis County Fund has awarded nearly $ 1 million in grants to nonprofit organizations working to improve the quality of life in the area.
The county fund’s anniversary, as well as those serving Aroostook and Washington counties, was celebrated in a late afternoon presentation on Zoom on September 28. The program included the presentation of a 35th anniversary award to the Appalachian Mountain Club.
“We are here today to celebrate the importance of these three county funds, the counties of Aroostook, Piscataquis and Washington,” said MCF board chairman D. Gregg Collins. “They helped pave the way for permanent funds that now include all 16 counties. These funds strengthen the regions and improve the quality of life for so many Mainers in this beautiful state we call home. ”
Collins thanked all of the local county councilors, who he said serve as ambassadors for the foundation. “Counselors know the needs of the communities in which they live. They give grants and create charitable resources in their regions, ”he said.
Collins also thanked the nonprofit partners of the MCF for the day-to-day work in providing local resources as well as the “hundreds of donors who have a passion for Maine and have built these funds over the years.”
Celebration attendees watched videos highlighting each of the three regions – Piscataquis County is at https://youtu.be/Pp0CMG9b_jM and the whole celebration is also on the MCF’s YouTube page.
“I think the Piscataquis County Fund Community Foundation of Maine is very important because we are a small population,” said former county committee councilor Cathy Sweetser. “Our nonprofits are all on the verge of survival, so any grant they can get is very beneficial.”
“Honestly, there’s probably no part of this building or the programming of this building that the Maine Community Foundation hasn’t supported over the years,” Center Theater CEO Patrick Myers said.
Piscataquis County Committee Chairman Ethan Annis mentioned the 35th anniversary and said, “We are using our local knowledge and expertise to provide these grants to local nonprofits for their new opportunities. The other element is that we have to create philanthropic resources for our riding and for the fund. ”
Sweetser then said that she and her husband started a scholarship fund with MCF, and Myers said the organization helped launch the Center Theater and that he knew the support would be there forever.
“The Maine Community Foundation has helped us expand our mission beyond simply sharing the history of this region through Katahdin and developing educational outreach to area students throughout Piscataquis County,” said said Liz McKeil, Executive Director. from the Moosehead Marine Museum. “It means we get more people involved and people support what they create. It’s just going to strengthen the whole region.
“We are independent people, but the unity in our region is so strong,” Annis said. “Keeping the fund growing and sustaining it is important to improving the quality of life for all people in Maine.”
“The Maine Community Foundation has repeatedly provided that connection to local ideas and local people and helped us fund those ideas,” said Steve Tatko, Maine Conservation and Land Management Director for the Appalachian Mountain Club.
Annis, who is vice president of Lary Funeral Home, said he was a third generation business owner. “As a funeral director, I focus on taking care of families. As a volunteer for the Maine Community Foundation, I am happy to be able to improve the quality of life in our county and strengthen our communities, ”he said. “I would like to thank more than 30 current and former county committee councilors for serving as ambassadors for our region. Over the past 35 years, the Piscataquis County Committee has awarded over 245 grants totaling over $ 900,000.
He said that in honor of the 35th anniversary of the Piscatquis County Fund, the committee selected an anniversary winner, the Appalachian Mountain Club.
Tatko said it has been an honor and privilege to have the support of the Maine Community Foundation and all they have done to advance AMC’s work for conservation education and programming and restoring the actual conservation here in this region. It’s a great legacy they’ve made for themselves and we’re very happy they’re doing this job.