LEWISTON — A Norway charitable feeding program and a Lewiston organization that helps refugees are among the recipients of Androscoggin Bank’s MainStreet Foundation grants. MainStreet Foundation recognizes a need for at-risk kids in Maine to be safe, healthy, active, happy, educated and nourished, and awards impact grants four times a year to organizations actively working to help kids thrive, said a news release from the organization. The grants vary based on the need and are awarded in amounts up to $5,000.
The first-quarter grants were approved at the quarterly meeting of the MainStreet Foundation Board of Directors on Feb. 22, the release said. A total of $10,000 was awarded at the meeting. Lewiston’s Somali Bantu Community Association of Maine, which assists members of the refugee community with at-large on housing, employment, literacy and education, health and safety matters in an effort to achieve personal independence and maintenance of community ties through community integration, received $1,500 The Progress Center in Norway was awarded $3,500 to help make its charitable-feeding programs, such as its food pantry, more accessible to disadvantaged teenagers by delivering healthy food to their schools twice a week during the school year.
Also receiving a grant was Maine Inside Out, a Portland-based nonprofit, which will use $2,500 to fund programming that improves employment, community engagement and recidivism outcomes for alumni of the arts programs at Long Creek Youth Development Center as youth return to the community after completing their sentences. The My Place Teen Center in Westbrook was awarded $2,500 to help fund year-round, nightly, healthy, robust meals to youth who are food insecure.