Maine Grant Resources

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Looking for rare and hard-to-find creatures from around the world, like Yeti's and Okapi’s? Check out the International Cryptozoology Museum in Portland, Maine! If the creature exists, or maybe exists, you'll probably find it there. Nowadays, if you’re writing funding proposals for your organization, looking for grants can feel just as challenging. Where can you go to find those creatures? Right here!

The lists and links below represent a wonderful variety of funding opportunities available in Maine. But there’s a great, big caveat regarding any and all funders: Each one has a very different set of criteria that they apply to potential applicants. It’s very important to find the best match between what you do and what they want to support, and then learn how to approach them. That can seem like a challenge, too, but we’re here to help!

With guidance from our top-notch trainers, you practice concepts as you learn them. Using our trademarked Listen & Discuss, Do & Review®️ curriculum, you get results! This active classroom experience is why our alumni claim remarkable success. Our 5-day Grantsmanship Training Program is the industry-leading workshop. Pressed for time? Our webinars may be just what you’re looking for. Check out our schedule to find something that suits you.

No programs scheduled your area in the near future? We still have lots for you! “Read more” below for additional online training resources, along with three important steps to develop a new, grant-winning strategy.

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MAINE FUNDING SOURCES
MAINE RESOURCES AND TOOLS

Below are links to elected officials, funding sources and other useful agencies for grant-seeking groups in Maine. Please let us know about others that you feel would be helpful so that we can continue to improve this listing. Thanks!

Government offices:

Governor Janet T. Mills - (207) 287-3531, Augusta

Senator Susan Collins - (202) 224-2523, Washington, DC

Senator Angus King - (202) 224-5344, Washington, DC

Attorney General Aaron Frey - (207) 626-8800, Augusta

The Maine Office of the Attorney General is organized into 13 divisions, with each division supervised by a chief attorney or other professional. In addition to providing oversight of the nonprofit sector, the Consumer Protection Division provides the Guide for Board Members of Charitable Corporations

If you’d like to know the names and addresses of other elected officials that represent you and your area, click here to locate them: Maine Government Elected Officials

Maine Arts Commission - MAC offers grant funding to Maine organizations, individuals, schools, and municipalities. The grant cycle opens January first each year with the majority of deadlines before the end of March, with some offerings that have additional autumn deadlines. Funding support must be used for projects between July 1 of this year and June 30 of the following year. If a project has components that fall outside of the timeframe, those components cannot be funded, although components within the timeframe remain eligible for funding. All applications must be made through the agency online Grants Management System.

Maine Commission for Community Service - The Commission builds capacity and sustainability in Maine's volunteer and service communities by funding programs, developing managers of volunteers, raising awareness of sector issues, and promoting service as a strategy. Partner organizations include: Corporation for National and Community Service, which represents AmeriCorps, Senior Corps, and Learn and Serve America; and VolunteerMaine.org, a project that serves as a "one-stop" service for both citizens who want to volunteer and to community groups seeking to address local problems through volunteer-powered solutions. VolunteerMaine.Org generally provides an alternative to individuals unable to commit to the major monthly time commitment required by AmeriCorps and other national groups.

Maine Department of Education - The Maine DOE is an agency of the State of Maine that administers both state education subsidies and state and federal grant programs; coordinates the authoring of the rules for Maine State education statutes passed by the Maine State Legislature; provides professional development, information, supports and resources, as well as a system for educator credentialing; and leads many collaborative opportunities and partnerships in support of local schools and districts.

Maine Department of Health and Human Services - The Department provides health care and social services to approximately a third of the state's population, including children, families, older Mainers, and individuals with disabilities, mental illness and substance use disorders. We also promote public health through the Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention, operate two state psychiatric hospitals, and provide oversight to health care providers through our licensing division.

Maine Office of Community Development - OCD is a division within the Department of Economic & Community Development (DECD). The primary focus of OCD is the administration of the HUD funded Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) Program, which includes regional technical assistance and training. We work closely with Maine municipalities, regional partnerships and non-profit groups to meet a broad array of economic and community development needs.

Maine Office of Professional & Financial Regulation - The primary responsibility of the Office is to review applicants for registration who hold themselves out to be organized or operating for any charitable purpose and who solicit, accept, or obtain contributions from the public for any charitable purpose, and further to compile and maintain current information on registered Charitable Organizations and Professional Solicitors in the State of Maine. Unless specifically exempted, an entity is required to become licensed in order to solicit contributions in the State of Maine, and must renew their license annually.

Other helpful organizations:

Association of Fundraising Professionals - Northern New England Chapter - Based in Portsmouth, NH, the AFP-NNE Chapter is the professional association for fundraisers and development executives from Maine, New Hampshire and Vermont who are dedicated to upholding the highest standards of ethics and professionalism. The Chapter provides ethical expertise and guidance to practitioners of philanthropy through education, training, mentoring, networking and advocacy. 

Maine Association of Nonprofits - Based in Portland, MANP’s mission is to strengthen the leadership, voice and organizational effectiveness of Maine nonprofits by serving as the state’s comprehensive resource for the tools, knowledge and connections nonprofits need to be effective and well-run.

Pro Bono Legal Services from Bernstein Shur - Our founder, Israel Bernstein, was strongly committed to strengthening his community, which is why civic service has been an integral part of Bernstein Shur’s core values since day one. On average, our attorneys collectively dedicate approximately 2,000 hours a year to charitable organizations, providing legal services worth approximately $500,000. Many of our attorneys and staff members also supplement those hours by serving in civic leadership positions, volunteering for local nonprofits, and coaching sports teams in their communities.

MAINE COMMUNITY FOUNDATION

Looking for a grant-making organization that knows your community as well as you do? Check out the  Maine Community Foundation! With offices in Ellsworth and Portland, this is one potential funder who knows the needs of each community in the state in great detail, and who will want to learn how your organization fits within the local service network.

Here’s a brief overview of MCF’s funding priorities: 

A STRONG START -- All Maine children receive a healthy start and arrive at kindergarten developmentally prepared to succeed in school and life; 

ACCESS TO EDUCATION -- All Maine people, including adult learners and other nontraditional students, are able to complete a degree or certificate program to maximize their potential; 

RACIAL EQUITY -- All people of color in Maine have access to opportunities and life outcomes that are not limited in any way by race or ethnicity; 

THRIVING OLDER PEOPLE -- All older people in Maine are valued and able to thrive and age in their workplaces and communities with health, independence, and dignity; and 

ENTREPRENEURS & INNOVATORS -- Entrepreneurship and innovation are broadly promoted and practiced in Maine, particularly in natural resource-based activities.

Want to learn more about how Community Foundations work in general before approaching MCF for funding, or learn about other resources they might offer? Click here on What’s a Community Foundation? Remember, research and insight are key to developing a successful path to grant-seeking. 

UNITED WAYS OF MAINE

United Way of Androscoggin County, Inc. - Based in Lewiston, UWAC’s mission is to increase the organized capacity of people in Androscoggin County to care for one another.  The organization leads and supports strategic initiatives that work to identify the root causes of community-wide problems and brings collective community resources together to implement long-lasting solutions.

United Way of Aroostook - Based in Presque Isle, the mission of UWA is to mobilize resources to improve the lives of people in our communities. We're igniting a social movement by empowering people to unite and solve complex problems that affect us all.

United Way of Eastern Maine - Based in Bangor, UWEM works in Hancock, Penobscot, Piscataquis, Waldo and Washington counties to improve the lives of people in Eastern Maine by mobilizing the caring power of people and communities. Today, United Way of Eastern Maine is the largest private funder of education, income, and health services in the five-county area.

United Way of Greater Portland - United Way of Greater Portland’s mission is to improve people’s lives by mobilizing the caring power of our community. Today, we are uniting individuals and organizations around our community’s shared vision, Thrive2027, with its three 10-year goals to improve education, financial stability and health for every person in Greater Portland.

United Way of Kennebec Valley - Based in Augusta, UWKV serves 21 communities in Southern Kennebec County, partnering with 51 local programs to provide a better quality of life for people experiencing emergencies, hardships and personal challenges. More than 22,000 Kennebec Valley people were helped by United Way programs and initiatives in the last year. This means 30% of local people are directly supported by United Way!

United Way of Mid Coast Maine - Based in Bath, UWMCM serves people in Sagadahoc and Lincoln Counties, Brunswick and Harpswell by working to create long-lasting change in the areas of Education, Financial Stability/Basic Needs, and Health.

United Way of Mid-Maine - Based in Waterville, UWMM is a local organization that creates long-lasting community change by addressing the underlying causes of our most significant local problems. We proudly serve the people of Somerset, Northern Kennebec and Western Waldo Counties by working with 26 partner agencies providing programs that create solutions to the problems many face every day in Mid-Maine.

United Way of the Tri-Valley Area - Based in Farmington, UWTVA strives to unite people and resources to improve lives and build a strong and healthy community. We do this by identifying local needs and addressing their root causes, raising funds to meet those needs, and collaborating on local initiatives that create a measurable difference in Greater Franklin County.

United Way of York County - Based in Kennebunk, UWYC has focused on the most important issues facing our community. Currently, our community-influenced strategic plan is focused on ensuring the best start for children birth to age 8, improving nutritional outcomes for children and seniors through hunger prevention, helping youth develop leadership skills and community connections by engaging them in service and philanthropy, and supporting a safety net of services that meet basic needs. To do this, we galvanize individuals and organizations to act, while mobilizing resources, expertise and funding.

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