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Updated by Jennifer Iacovelli on May 18, 2020
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Giving Voice articles: Our Neighbors, Our Community (in Brunswick Maine)

Giving Voice is a weekly collaboration among four local non-profit service agencies - including Tedford Housing, Mid Coast Hunger Prevention Program, Oasis Free Clinics and The Gathering Place - to share information and stories about their work in the community. The articles are published in The Times Record every Friday.

Summer comes with food strain, MCHPP seeks to help | The Times Record

 With the end of the school year just around the corner, Mid Coast Hunger Prevention Program, located in Brunswick, is preparing for its Summer Food Service Program.

Volunteering at The Gathering Place | The Times Record

 My name is Charlene Matts and I am a volunteer supervisor at The Gathering Place in Brunswick.

A Day in the Life at Tedford Housing | The Times Record

 If you ask people in the Brunswick community about what Tedford does, many respond that we provide a shelter for people that are homeless.

Life-Saving Medications Should Not Be Luxury Items | The Times Record

 When discussing why patients do not take their prescribed medications, former U.S. Surgeon General C. Everett Koop bluntly stated, ' Drugs don't work in patients who don't take them.'

Hunger prevention program, fishermen's association partnership paying off | The Times Record

A few years ago Monique Coombs, Director of Marine Programs of Maine Coast Fishermen’s Association and Karen Parker, Executive Director of Mid Coast Hunger Prevention Program started talking about a potential partnership between their two organizations. Now their plan has come to fruition.

Guests and volunteers at The Gathering Place | The Times Record

As the Volunteer Program Coordinator at The Gathering Place, I have the unique opportunity to see how The Gathering Place has a positive impact on both the many guests who come every day and the many volunteers who give of their time to serve these guests every day.

When Bowdoin College students cross the endowment line | The Times Record

Right here in Brunswick sits an institution with an extraordinarily vast abundance of resources and seemingly endless amount of funding, that which only a private liberal arts institution can attain. But beyond this very real, yet imaginary “endowment line” exists the growing challenge of homelessness in our community. Bowdoin College, my Maine home, situates itself within the larger Midcoast region currently working to support many of their neighbors who do not have a place to call home.

Oasis Free Clinics: Helping to meet the need for free medical care | The Times Record

In 1992, a group of local physicians realized that there was a need for free health services for those experiencing homelessness. To address this need, Dr. Peter McGuire and Dr. Dean Davies created the Tedford- Oasis Health Care for the Homeless Program at the Brunswick Tedford-Oasis Shelter.

Fighting hunger in the Midcoast | The Times Record

As a hunger relief agency, Mid Coast Hunger Prevention provides our neighbors with access to fresh, healthy foods. Over the years, we have been able to add programs and increase service hours to continue meeting the growing needs in our community, with many thanks to the generous support of our donors.

Homeless and 'undocumented' | The Times Record

Among the homeless in America, many have the same challenges as immigrants at our southern borders: A disorienting milieu of having to prove who we are after losing all identification papers, debit cards and checkbooks bit by bit in the snow, in flooded campsites or maybe liberated by others attempting to come out of their struggle to regain personhood and even proof of citizenship.

Going back to school when you are in need | The Times Record

Funny commercials and in-store displays seem to promote back-to-school sales earlier and earlier each year. While the deals may be great, the families that Tedford Housing serves aren’t always able to participate in the annual rush to fulfill their children’s school supplies lists. The families we serve are struggling to find or maintain their permanent housing. Ticonderoga pencils and fashion trends are the last thing on their minds.

Giving Voice: Volunteers are the heart and Soul of Oasis Free Clinics | The Times Record

'We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give.' – Winston Churchill Oasis Free Clinics exists because of its volunteers — that's no exaggeration.

Giving Voice: How lunch gets to the table at Mid Coast Hunger Prevention Program | The Times Record

Most Fridays, (and other weekdays) a dedicated group of volunteers report in at Mid Coast Hunger Prevention Program's back entrance as that day's lunch crew.

Giving Voice: What The Gathering Place taught me | The Times Record

When The Gathering Place — a daytime drop-in center in Brunswick for the homeless — began in 2011, our intention was simply to offer a place for those who wanted to come during the day where they would be respected and welcomed, where their essential dignity as human beings would be honored and recognized. These remain the watchword of The Gathering Place today.

Giving Voice: Upstanders in our midst | The Times Record

An upstander is a person 'who speaks or acts in support of an individual or cause...who recognizes when something is wrong and acts to make it right....being socially responsible.'

Giving Voice: There but for the Grace of God … | The Times Record

Several years ago I knelt down in front of a few Sunday school kids at St Paul's Church in Brunswick. They wanted to hear about The Gathering Place, a Brunswick day center for the area's homeless and others in search of a caring, non-judging community.

Giving Voice: Who needs Oasis Free Clinics? | The Times Record

If I wake up in the morning and I've got an unusual pain in my knee, or a tick bite I missed with a ring around it, I call my doctor and schedule an appointment.

Giving Voice: Who are these people? | The Times Record

Occasionally an acquaintance, or a friend, aware that I volunteer at The Gathering Place, will inquire, 'So, who are these people?'

Giving Voice: Neighbors helping neighbors during the giving season | The Times Record

If you've ever visited Tedford Housing's administrative office during the month of November or early December, you may have seen evidence of the immense generosity of our neighbors.

Our Thanksgiving list is very long | The Times Record

The traditions of Thanksgiving, turkey, gravy, pies, football, and family gathering around the table, stem from the belief that for one day, we should stop and give thanks for the blessings of the year.

Giving Voice: The holidays at Mid Coast Hunger | The Times Record

With the first snowfall just last week, Brunswick has begun to swing ever so gently into the winter holidays.

Giving Voice: When a group of people becomes a community | The Times Record

The Gathering Place began in 2011 as a disparate group of people. Some were homeless. Some had places to stay but they were lonely.

Giving Voice: How do you pay for a free clinic? | The Times Record

Oasis Free Clinics is a free service providing medical and dental services for low income, uninsured adults in our community, covering Sagadahoc County, Brunswick, Freeport, Durham, Harpswell, and the Islands.

Giving Voice: 'Twas the week before Christmas at Tedford Housing | The Times Record

It's the week before Christmas as I write this article, and the Tedford Housing administrative office is oddly quiet....

Giving Voice: On food access and the farm bill | The Times Record

On Dec. 20, President Trump signed the Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018, also known as the farm bill, into law.