COLUMBIA, ME – July 7, 2021 – Downeast Wind and Apex Clean Energy have awarded $1,500 grants to five local organizations from the Downeast Wind Community Grant Program. The program's purpose is to support local changemakers and community leaders working to build healthy communities, support economic development, foster environmental sustainability, and promote education.
“Washington County is fortunate to have these dedicated organizations and leaders working to improve their communities. We are proud to support their work and thankful for the services they provide to our region,” said Robert Gee, Development Manager for Downeast Wind.
A grant to Downeast Hospice Volunteers, the only all-volunteer non-profit program licensed by the state of Maine serving residents of Washington County, will help the group develop and deliver a community caregiving workshop to help train and support caregivers doing this emotionally and physically demanding work.
“We are touched by your generosity that enables us to continue to provide cost-free compassionate care and companionship to the terminally ill, their families, and caregivers in Washington County as we have done for the past 40 years,” said Paul R. Strickland, Board President of Downeast Hospice Volunteers.
American Legion Narraguagus Post #8 is receiving a grant to assist with chimney and building repairs needed to keep the building available for community events.
Post Adjutant Peter Duston was thrilled by the news and eager to put the grant to use. "This is wonderful news for our (American) Legion Post. The money is a life saver since we operate on fumes."
A grant for the Downeast Institute for Applied Marine Research and Education will support their education program, now in its 10th year, which provides experiential marine science and math education to pre-kindergarten through 12th grade students.
A grant awarded to the Downeast Lakes Land Trust will help fund a summer stipend for one of their Future Conservation Leaders Program interns. The internship program gives Washington County students the opportunity to engage in hands-on conservation projects including trail and campsite maintenance, youth education, habitat management, environmental data collection, and public outreach.
The Downeast Salmon Federation is being awarded a grant to support upgrades to Saco Falls Town Park in Columbia by brushing out and resurfacing the parking area with composted clam shells, providing a clean, stable parking surface while having a positive effect on water quality in the Pleasant River. This work will be assisted by a group of River Camp student conservation volunteers in partnership with the Cobscook Institute.
Downeast Wind's top priority is being a strong community partner to the residents, businesses, local governments, and non-profit organizations of Washington County. In addition to the support provided by the Downeast Wind Community Grant Program, the project will bring more than $20 million of new revenue to the Town of Columbia and Washington County to support community priorities as well as significant local spending, employment, and investment during project construction and operations.