July 2015 Table of Contents
Message from the CEO
Save the Date! The Power of She 10K
Spotlight on Grantee: Wayfinder Schools' Passages Program
Leadership Luncheon 2015
2015 Grantees
Events, News, and Resources
Read the 2013-14 Report to the Community

Summer is in full swing and it's busy at the Fund. Grant checks were mailed in June to the 2015 Grantees, we hosted an Open House in Falmouth and welcomed friends to see our new space and shared images from the Luncheon. We have a new video to share from the May 19 Leadership Luncheon, too, that you can view here . We bid farewell to Administrative Assistant Katie Allen after three years of dedicated service to the Fund, and in July we are welcoming Lauren Webster LaFrance as the new full-time Marketing and Communications Director for the Fund. Lauren comes to us after more than a dozen years at the Women and Gender Studies program at USM. We are excited to add Lauren to the team!


The Fund closed its 2014/2015 books in June, with assets at a record-high to support increased grant making, and the highest annual fund in the past ten years to support operations. You can read more about this record year when the Report to the Community is published this fall. We are so grateful to all of our friends and supporters who make it possible for the Fund to invest in the power of women and the dreams of girls to build economic security for them, so communities prosper.


This winter the Fund was approached by SheJAMs, a local all-women's training group, to be the designated beneficiary of their first all-women's 10K, The Power of SHE, to be run in Portland (starts at the USM campus) on Sunday, October 11th. If you're a 10K runner or would like to set a goal to welcome fall by running in your first 10K, this looks like the race for you. When registering, there is an opportunity for you to choose to be a fundraiser for the Maine Women's Fund. Three Fund board members have already registered!


On behalf of the board, staff and grantees of the Fund, we hope your summer is full of great reasons to enjoy and celebrate, like sunny days, warmer weather, and time with special people in special places. While you do, we thank you for all you do to support women and girls in Maine.


Sarah Ruef-Lindquist 


Register Now!


SPOTLIGHT ON GRANTEE: Wayfinder Schools' Passages Program
Rebecca Doyle with daughter Elena, Passages Student, and Erica Gate, Passages
Rebecca Doyle with daughter Elena, Passages Student, and Erica Gate, Passages

The Fund had the opportunity to visit the Wayfinder Schools' Passages Program, meeting with faculty and students at their Camden Offices way back in April.  It was a great visit with lots of sharing and learning with little ones creating their own adventures and educational opportunities as we talked!


Wayfinder Schools was established through the successful merger of Opportunity Farm (founded in 1910 as a Residential Program for at-risk youth in southern Maine) and The Community School, founded in 1973 as Maine's first alternative high school.  Their mission is to provide relational learning programs that provide students with the skills and experience necessary to discover their strengths, connect with their families, practice personal responsibility and contribute to their communities, and which culminate in the awarding of a high school diploma from the state of Maine. 


Grant funding from the Maine Women's Fund supports the Passages program for teen parents, which provides individualized instruction to students in their own homes, thereby eliminating the need to secure daily childcare and transportation in order to attend school. Students work to complete course work in 24 core skill areas related to academics, parenting and life skills, including everything from social studies and English language arts to budgeting, nutrition and child development. Each Passages teacher has 8-10 students within a 50 mile radius and teaches all the core skills to each of their students at whatever pace the student sets. Teachers model positive parenting behaviors building trusting supportive relationships with their student and child. Role modeling is reciprocal as the teachers find great inspiration in their students. Home-based instruction, along with online support, is complemented by monthly life-skills workshops with other young parents and children in the program, as well as service learning work in the community with transportation and childcare provided by Passages staff and volunteers. Service learning work allows students to gain new confidence, community connections and job skills.

For 2014, Passages exceeded its goal to serve 50 students with 100% of students receiving all the key program components. Passages serves 55 students in 8 counties and they hope to be in all 16 in the next five years. Their graduation rate for teen parents is at 61% by the age of 21.  Nationally, that average is 50% by age 24 for teen mothers, making the Passages Program extremely successful by national standards. Thirty-seven percent (37%) go on to post-secondary schooling right after high school and 55% are working.  In the last three years alone, 30 students have graduated. Passages has found great success in creating a foundation for students to achieve their life goals. It was wonderful to hear the students that met with us talk about their goals, from being a carpenter and automotive expert to moving up the medical professions ladder from an EMT to a doctor.  It was a pleasure to meet with such accomplished young women who are far exceeding the expectations that others have set for them, and hear from the Passages teachers and administrators who are supporting them on their journey. This spring, Nikki, a Passages graduate, generously shared how Passages has impacted her life in a short video shared at the 2015 Leadership Luncheon. 



Thank you to our 2015 Sponsors!

Lead Sponsor:  

Cornerstone Sponsors: 

iBec Creative

Maine Magazine

Gift Underwriter:
Spinnaker Trust

Volunteer Underwriter
Hurley Travel Experts/Direct Travel

Video Underwriter:

Benefactor Sponsors:
Rep. Chellie Pingree and S. Donald Sussman

Supporter Sponsors:
Gayle Brazeau, Dean, College of Pharmacy, University of New England

Friend & Nonprofit Sponsors:


The Maine Women's Fund has awarded grants totaling $98,000 to organizations working to build the economic security of Maine women and girls. This includes grants from donor-advised funds, resources established by individuals who make recommendations as to how the funds are spent.


Elder Abuse Institute of Maine - Transitional Housing for Elder Victims of Abuse to provide transitional housing and support services to older victims of abuse, neglect and exploitation, including domestic violence, sexual assault and stalking.  These services are critical to helping older victims - typically an underserved population - escape abusive relationships and find avenues to live free of violence.


Girl Scouts of Maine - Sharing the Wealth: Financial Literacy for Girls where volunteers will be trained by GSME to deliver a series of financial literacy programs to girls 5-17.  200 volunteers could potentially participate affecting the lives of over 1,000 girls. Groups will meet at various locations. The program will be piloted with up to four events in late 2015 with 25 volunteers per session.


Mabel Wadsworth Women's Health Center - Supporting Mabel's Clinical Care. This project will help the Center continue seeing uninsured and clients with MaineCare through these tough economic times. These clients often delay preventative care, such as cancer screenings and birth control. The support will ensure that the Health Center can see these clients and meet their mission of providing care regardless of economic resources.


Maine Boys to Men - Reducing Sexism & Violence Program (RSVP). This program supports delivery and enhancement of their evidence-based Reducing Sexism and Violence Program (RSVP). RSVP empowers diverse groups of female and male student leaders to play a central role in recognizing and stopping behaviors that can lead to abuse, harassment, and interpersonal violence.


Maine Women's Policy Center - Advancing Women's Economic Security. Operating support for the ongoing effort to improve the economic well being of Maine women and girls.  In 2015 they plan to host the second Maine Women's Summit on Economic Security; to recruit and support Regional Leaders and local groups; to distribute Building a Prosperous Maine.


Next Step - Innovations in Youth Education.  Will gather information from the students about gender-based attitudes and behaviors in the school and use that information to develop and implement curriculum on domestic, sexual, and dating violence.


ROiL dba Maine Inside Out - Transitional employment program at Long Creek Youth Development Center. The program will help support Maine Inside Out's theater-based reintegration and transitional employment program for young women incarcerated at Long Creek Development Center.


SeniorsPlus - Money Matters for Women. SeniorsPlus will expand Money Minders, a financial education/support program that helps older women (low-moderate income) maintain financial independence by assisting them to create a monthly budget.  The program ensures bills are paid, connects eligible consumers to benefits, and reduces the chance of foreclosure, bankruptcy and exploitation.


Sexual Assault Prevention and Response Services - Bridging the Gap. During the school year, they will provide individual advocacy and support to students affected by sexual abuse and sexual assault.  When the school year ends, students do not have the same kind of access to services.  The organization will be establishing outreach sites in the summer in their communities to ensure that students have access to ongoing support.


Wayfinder Schools - Passages Program for Teen Parents. To advance the economic security of women and girls in Maine through support of Wayfinder Schools' Passages Program for teen parents. Passages is a home-based high school diploma program focused on academics, parenting and life skills and helping to reduce dropout in Maine.


Women Unlimited - WorkReady, Set, Go! Maine Department of Education certified Women Unlimited as a WorkReadyME training facility to offer standards based training and employment support.  They plan to offer the 60 hour course to incarcerated women with the intent of preparing them for employment. Women will emerge with a portfolio, employment referrals, and other tools for success.


 "The slate of grantees in 2015 represents the Fund's 25th year of grants of almost $2,000,000 to roughly 200 organizations improving economic security for women and girls in Maine. We know that when women and girls thrive, communities prosper, and that is our goal for Maine." said Maine Women's Fund CEO Sarah Ruef-Lindquist.





Next Step's Blueberry Fun Run and Road Race is August 18th starting at 8:00 AM in Machias. This run is the kick off to the annual Machias Wild Blueberry Festival, which features craft vendors, exhibits, and food. There are a variety of routes and prizes for finishing. >>Register here



First Installment of IWPR's 2015 Status of Women in the States Report  

Women make up nearly half of the U.S. workforce, and their earnings are essential to the economic security of families across the nation. Yet, gender equality at work remains elusive. Women who work full-time, year-round still earn only 78 cents on the dollar compared with men, and during the last decade little improvement has been made in closing the gender wage gap (DeNavas-Walt and Proctor 2014). The glass ceiling persists, and occupational segregation-the concentration of women in some jobs and men in others-remains a stubborn feature of the U.S. labor market (Hegewisch et al. 2010). These national trends show up in states across the nation. This report examines women's earnings and the gender wage gap, women's labor force participation, and the occupations and industries in which women work. It also considers areas where women have experienced progress toward gender equity in the workforce and places where progress has slowed or stalled.

>>Read the Report 


2015 Report on Status of Women and Girls in Maine by the PCSW 

The Permanent Commission on the Status of Women is a nonpartisan, independent advisory board, statutorily charged with: "Serving as an advocate for women in making recommendations on proposed budgetary, legislative and policy actions to the Governor, the Legislature and other officials of the State and the Federal Government with respect to state and federal policies, programs and other activities affecting or relating to women in the State." The Commission gathered surveys from more than 3,000 women and girls across the state, reviewed data and research to supplement the survey findings and worked to build consensus around policy recommendations, offering a roadmap to leaders and policy makers to move the needle on key issues affecting women.

>>Read the Report 


Women Unlimited Offering Job Counseling

Women Unlimited, a Maine Women's Fund grantee and non-profit organization out of Augusta is running a program that works one-on-one with both men and women in Washington County who are looking for jobs. Anne Favolise is available in the Career Center in Machias on Wednesdays to help job seekers with job searches, interview skills, mock interviews, application preparation, and resume writing.  

>>Email Anne Favolise 


To End Extreme Poverty, Target Women and Girls, Report Urges

To achieve the United Nations' goal of ending extreme poverty by 2030, the Sustainable Development Goals must specifically target women and girls, a report from the ONE campaign argues.

According to the report, Poverty Is Sexist: Why Girls and Women Must Be at the Heart of the Fight Against Extreme Poverty, extreme poverty disproportionately affects women and girls in the developing world, many of whom face structural, social, economic, and political barriers to improving their lives that men - and women in wealthier countries - experience to a far lesser degree. "Poverty and gender inequality go hand-in-hand," the report's authors write, and addressing gender gaps in poor countries is not only a moral imperative but also a practical one, given the growing body of evidence which supports the idea that targeting investments in girls and women can help lift entire families and communities out of poverty. 

>>Read more 


Celebrate Women's History Month with the New York Times Special Section

Use this page to quickly find Learning Network lesson plans, crosswords and archival materials - as well as links to current Times articles and multimedia and great resources around the Web. 

>>Read more 


Obama Administration Expands 'Let Girls Learn' Initiative

The Obama administration has announced that it is expanding its efforts to help adolescent girls around the globe attend and complete school. The Let Girls Learn initiative will build on existing girls' empowerment programs run by US AID, the U.S. State Department, the Peace Corps, and Millennium Challenge Corp.; leverage partnerships with public- and private-sector partners; and challenge other governments to commit resources to help adolescent girls complete their education. Today 62 million girls - half of them adolescents - are not in school and, as a result, face diminished economic opportunities and higher risk of early and forced marriage. Studies have found that, for girls, secondary school attendance is correlated with later marriage and childbearing, lower birth rates, lower maternal and infant mortality rates, and lower rates of HIV/AIDS.

>>Read more 


Older Women Workers and Economic Security

On average, women earn less than men with each paycheck, which causes a significant gender disparity in earnings over a lifetime. As a result, women often lack the financial resources needed in old age. This fact sheet addresses the economic needs of older women, their sources of income, and the gender wage gap by race and ethnicity. It discusses factors that impact the lower average lifetime earnings of women and policy changes that could increase the economic security of older women. Lower earnings than men for full-time work, lower likelihood than men to work full-time, and a greater likelihood than men to have had time out of the labor force because of caregiving all contribute to women's lower lifetime earnings.

>>Read more 




Foundation for Women's Wellness 

The Foundation for Women's Wellness is dedicated to improving women's health by raising support for innovative early-stage research and education. To advance this mission, FWW is inviting proposals for its 2015 Women's Health Research Awards, an annual program that supports small, short-term studies with promise for improving medical knowledge in cardiovascular disease, leading female cancers, the role of hormones in disease and stage-of-life health issues such as pregnancy and menopause, and diseases disproportionately affecting women. In 2015, FWW will award two one-time research awards of $25,000.
>>Read more

Intel Corporation has announced a $300 million initiative aimed at boosting workforce diversity at the company and in the technology and gaming industries. Through its Diversity in Technology initiative, Intel will work to build a more robust pipeline of female and minority engineers and computer scientists; actively support the hiring and retention of more women and minorities; and fund efforts to increase the number of positive representations of these groups within the technology and gaming industries. To that end, the chip maker will collaborate with education programs focused on underserved neighborhoods and communities as well as computer science and engineering programs at higher education institutions, including historically black colleges and universities.

Deep Foundations Institute Educational Trust
The Deep Foundations Institute Educational Trust is accepting applications from women in the industry for a professional development opportunity related to the design and construction of deep foundations. One grant of $2,500 will be awarded in 2015. The grant must be used to cover registration fees, lodging, meals, travel, and other related expenses for the recipient to attend DFI's 40th Annual Conference on Deep Foundations in Oakland, California, October 12-15, 2015. The recipient will be featured in the DFI magazine Deep Foundations and will be recognized at the Women in Deep Foundations Committee's inaugural reception in Oakland. To be eligible, applicants must be a female currently employed within the deep foundations industry or academia. In addition,  applicants must be recommended by their current employer's leadership. >>Read More
Deadline: July 15, 2015

Open Meadows Foundation
Open Meadows Foundation is a grant-making organization seeking projects that promote gender, racial, and/or economic justice. The projects must be led by and benefit women and girls, particularly those from vulnerable communities. Grants of up to $2,000 will be awarded for projects that are designed and implemented by women and girls; reflect the diversity of the community served by the project in both its leadership and organization; promote building community power; and have limited financial access or have encountered obstacles in their search for funding. Small and start-up organizations are strongly encouraged to apply. >>Read More
Deadline: August 15, 2015     


The MetLife Foundation 

Launched a new global campaign to bring financial inclusion to low-income communities. 

Deadline: Open


American Honda Foundation

Invites applications for STEM programs. 

For individuals working to make their community and the world a better place in the areas of arts and culture, community health and wellness, the environment, and justice.

Deadline: Open  


Kellogg Foundation

Invites applications for programs that engage youth and communities in learning opportunities. 

Deadline: Open





We have another amazing year of successes to report for fiscal year 2013-2014 on behalf of the Fund, all of which were made possible with the generous support of corporate, foundation and individual philanthropists, like you.  


Click here or on the image to the right to read the report.


We thank you for your participation as a donor, volunteer, or for attending the Luncheon or our county conversations. We could not do this work without you. Together, we will make Maine the best it can be for all who live and work here by ensuring that women and girls thrive so our communities prosper. Thank you for your commitment to creating better lives for women, families and communities in Maine.     


Consider giving a gift to the Maine Women's Fund today. 



The Maine Women's Fund thanks MaineShare for its ongoing support. MaineShare makes it easy to donate to more than 30 statewide organizations working every day to make Maine a better place to live. For more information, please visit the website.

On behalf of the staff and board of the Maine Women's Fund, thank you for reading and for all you do to support Maine women and girls.

Office locations:
74 Lunt Road, Suite 100, Falmouth, ME 04105 | 41 Mechanic Street, Suite 328, Camden, ME 04843

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