The University of Maine’s Center on Aging’s Lifelong Maine AmeriCorps Program (LMAP) celebrates the valuable contributions of AmeriCorps members who pledged to “get things done” with the communities where they are serving. Lifelong Maine AmeriCorps members working in multiple locations across Maine, have undertaken community projects to improve the lives of older residents, helping them live independently, through meal programs, balance training, better living initiatives, and more!
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Age-Friendly Community Initiative
in the Bethel Region
Chelsea's LMAP team - (from left to right) Patti Fredette, Wilma Ware, and Dot Grady - at the AmeriCorps maine swearing in ceremony
In Chelsea, the AmeriCorps trio of Dot Grady, Wilma Ware, and Patti Fredette have been exploring the ways to transform the undeveloped and underused resource of Butternut Park, located on the East bank of the Kennebec River into a community beacon. Collaborating with Age-Friendly Chelsea, the Chelsea Conservation Committee, and the Chelsea Historical Society, the three worked to enhance the park and make it a place for people of all ages to enjoy. In the past year they have built a “River Stage” using natural resources found in the park, reintroduced Butternut trees, created a walking trail, provided picnic tables, and installed signage describing the history of the Chelsea waterfront. Currently, the three are focusing on installing a trailhead kiosk, informational markers for native plants and trees, and purchasing benches.
LMAP members (from left to right) Mary MacDonald and Tara Mozdziez are dishing up fresh, healthy food for people who attend Breaking Bread Together
LMAP members (from left to right) Rick McInnis and Rosemarie O'Toole, letting People know about the Volunteer Transportation and Technology Programs in
Houlton's Spring Clean-Up Team (LMAP member Kathryn Harnish pictured second from the left)
LMAP members (from left to right) Sarah Jandreau and Barbara Riddle-Dovorak recruiting volunteers at the Millinocket Public Library
At the end of the Appalachian Trail, Millinocket, a former mill town with a population of just over 4,000, has LMAP members Sarah Jandreau and Barbara Riddle-Dvorak working on numerous regional efforts. Last year, they started a Learn & Grow Garden at the Millinocket Memorial Library where a raised bed model/teaching garden was designed to allow various community partners (Wabanaki Public Health, University of Maine Cooperative Extension, Breaking the Cycle- a recovery home for women, and the children’s summer reading program at the library) to demonstrate successful gardening practices. One of their most ambitious projects- to combat local scarcity of fresh food options and to promote community connectedness among all ages- is a planned downtown Millinocket Farmers' and Artisan Market, with an estimated start date of June 2023. Sarah is also an advocate for Brewer's Eastern Area Agency on Aging virtual Caregiver Support group for those who care for dementia patients and a new group for cancer patients in partnership with the Dempsey Center of Lewiston and Millinocket's own Katahdin Area Support group. Barbara’s community projects have included collecting items for a community 10-year time capsule and participating in the Maine Walking College’s 6-month study and community assessment. Through the walking college, a grant was received for adding new ADA icons to current signage on the downtown Michaud Tail.
LMAP member David Steed is honored to provide rides to residents as part of his service with the Age-Friendly Saco Volunteer Transportation