United Way of Greater Portland http://www.unitedwaygp.org Sat, 14 Feb 2015 13:04:15 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Valentine’s Day: A Day to Show You Care http://www.unitedwaygp.org/valentines-day-a-day-to-show-you-care/ http://www.unitedwaygp.org/valentines-day-a-day-to-show-you-care/#comments Sat, 14 Feb 2015 02:05:03 +0000 http://www.unitedwaygp.org/?p=3063 Valentines.2014

As we wrap up Random Acts of Kindness Week, it only seems appropriate that we step up our deliberate acts of kindness on Valentine’s Day. We invite you to share the love with neighbors, friends, and family. No matter if you have 5 minutes or 5 hours to spare, reach out to those who may not expect it and may need it the most.

How to show you care in:


  • Give schools winter clothing for children who may need something to keep them warm.
  • Donate coats and boots for refugees and immigrants
  • Give books to your local library.


  • Help a neighbor install or test their smoke alarm.
  • Shovel an elderly neighbor’s walkway.
  • Put together goody bags for your local food pantry.


  • Commit to read at a school on Dr. Seuss’s birthday (March 2).
  • Spread the love and fight hunger! Volunteer at a soup kitchen or food bank.
  • Become a mentor.

Happy Day of Caring (aka Happy Valentine’s Day)!

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Dan Coyne named to Inaugural class of John T. Gorman Foundation Fellows http://www.unitedwaygp.org/dan-coyne-named-to-inaugural-class-of-john-t-gorman-foundation-fellows/ http://www.unitedwaygp.org/dan-coyne-named-to-inaugural-class-of-john-t-gorman-foundation-fellows/#comments Thu, 12 Feb 2015 20:51:12 +0000 http://www.unitedwaygp.org/?p=3069 Dan Coyne named to Inaugural class of John T. Gorman Foundation Fellows

United Way of Greater Portland (UWGP) is pleased to announce that Senior Vice President for Community Impact, Dan Coyne has been selected for the inaugural cohort of John T. Gorman Fellows.

Coyne is one of ten professionals to be named to the 2015 Fellowship, a new leadership program in Maine for nonprofit and public sector professionals. The Fellowship aims to help participants become more focused on results and build the vision, confidence, and competence required to advance change and improve the lives of vulnerable people in Maine.

“We are exceptionally proud of the work Dan leads, as we aim to tackle hard issues in the areas of education, financial stability, and health,” said United Way of Greater Portland President and CEO, Liz Cotter Schlax. “The opportunity presented by the John T. Gorman Foundation through this Fellowship will strengthen even further United Way’s ability to confront these challenges head-on.”

The Fellowship is comprised of six, two-day seminars designed to elicit reflection, exploration, and learning about leadership styles, and how they fit into organizations and systems that are of particular interest to the John T. Gorman Foundation. Particular focus will be paid to results-based leadership and data-driven decision-making.

Prior to becoming UWGP’s Senior Vice President for Community Impact, Dan served as its Director of Financial Stability & Public Policy. Previously, Dan was Legislative Director and a financial policy analyst at the Maine Center for Economic Policy, and also worked as an Economic Development and Special Projects Director and Legislative Assistant for former Congressman Tom Allen. Dan has clerked for the Maine Supreme Judicial Court and served as a judicial intern with the United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit and as a Bernstein Fellow with the Maine District Court. He is a volunteer board member for the Maine Irish Heritage Center, as well as Great Schools Partnership. Dan holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Government/History from Bowdoin College, and his J.D. from the Maine School of Law.

“I am truly excited for the chance to participate in the Fellowship,” said Coyne. “The opportunity to learn from not only experts in the field, but also my colleagues from across the state is energizing, and I look forward to collaborating with each of the Fellows to put this knowledge to work for the good of all Mainers.”

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Financial Stability RFP http://www.unitedwaygp.org/financial-stability-rfp/ http://www.unitedwaygp.org/financial-stability-rfp/#comments Mon, 09 Feb 2015 19:50:34 +0000 http://www.unitedwaygp.org/?p=3010 United Way of Greater Portland RFP Announcement

United Way of Greater Portland (United Way) advances the common good by creating opportunities for a better life for all. To accomplish this, one of our primary goals is to increase the long-term financial stability of individuals and families.

Goal: Everyone achieves long term financial stability.

Community Outcomes and Metrics:

- Safe, affordable housing: Individuals and families spend less than 30% of their income on housing
– Stable adequate income: Individuals and families earn a livable wage
– Adequate savings and assets: Individuals and families have savings equal to at least 3 months of income

United Way is seeking to fund one collaborative project in Cumberland County (with the exception of Brunswick and Harpswell) that moves beyond provision of basic needs services and provides supports to help individuals and families achieve long term improvement in their financial stability. Critical elements include:

- Provide supports to secure and maintain safe, affordable housing
– Maximize income/work supports and public programs
– Build education and skills for the workforce
– Increase basic financial skills

Amount: Up to $50,000 with the possibility of continued funding

Funding Period: One year, starting on award of grant funding

Deadline for Submission: April 1, 2015

Questions: Please contact Dan Coyne, 874-1000

Application Materials

RFP Instructions

Financial Stability RFP 2015

Participant Demographic Table FY16

Financial Stability RFP-Budget Forms 2015

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We’re Hiring: Receptionist http://www.unitedwaygp.org/were-hiring-receptionist/ http://www.unitedwaygp.org/were-hiring-receptionist/#comments Mon, 09 Feb 2015 19:46:12 +0000 http://www.unitedwaygp.org/?p=3034 Position Title: Receptionist
Division: Finance & Administration
Reports to: Human Resources/Operations Manager
Updated: February 2015


Under the general supervision of the HR/Ops Manager, this position is responsible for receptionist duties and assisting with administrative, finance, and operational duties.

Essential Job Functions


  • Provide excellent customer service by serving as the first point of contact for UWGP. Greet, refer, direct, and inform visitors on various organization matters and business.
  • Alert staff members when guests have arrived.
  • Manage conference room schedule (using MS Outlook), serve as contact person for meeting leaders.
  • Maintain and update telephone system messages. Add/delete users as appropriate.
  • Answer incoming telephone calls (including TTY) and forward calls to appropriate staff member.
  • Assist public with general information & referral to external agencies/organizations, often via 211 Maine.
  • Maintain up-to-date front desk information log.


  • Open mail, scan to electronic files, and prepare daily check receipt log. Identify donor account numbers.
  • Review pledge processing edit reports to ensure pledges have been entered accurately.
  • Provide Finance Team with various monthly reports.
  • Update donor records, as needed.
  • Assist with filing and sorting confidential financial documents.


  • Order office supplies per request of HR/Ops Manager.
  • Receive and sort packages; alert appropriate staff member(s) when packages have arrived.
  • Ensure all office doors are unlocked and locked at office opening/closing.


  • Provide administrative support to Finance and Operations Committees as needed.
  • Actively pursue special projects during lower volume periods of time.
  • Volunteer and actively participate in projects and cross-functional teams or workgroups that support the work of the entire organization.
  • Assist with a variety of duties as assigned.

Skills/ Experience/Training Required

  • Associate’s Degree or general clerical/office work equivalent.
  • One to three years related experience.
  • Strong attention to detail.
  • Ability to maintain confidential or sensitive donor information.
  • Excellent customer service skills; ability to establish and maintain effective working relationships with employees and the general public.
  • Ability to operate multi-line telephone system calmly, rapidly, and accurately.
  • Knowledge of current office practices, procedures, and equipment.
  • Ability to use the web as a tool to assist with providing information & referral.
  • Strong oral and written communication skills.

The above statements are intended to describe the general nature and level of work being performed by people assigned to do this job. The above is not intended to be an exhaustive list of all responsibilities and duties required.

Organizational Standards and Behaviors

UWGP is looking for leaders who will engage organizations, businesses, government institutions and individuals to collectively address education, income and health issues to drive systematic and measureable impact. Creating the changes our communities aspire to requires that our staff exhibits the following competencies.

  • Mission Focused
  • Relationship Oriented
  • Collaborator
  • Results Driven
  • Brand- Steward

Supervisory Responsibility


Working Conditions/Physical Demands

  • Normal office environment, not subject to extremes in temperature, noise, odors, etc…
  • May require lifting and carrying mail or packages
  • May spend extended periods at terminal, on telephone, or operating other office machines requiring eye-hand coordination and finger dexterity.

United Way of Greater Portland is an Equal Opportunity Employer. This organization does not and will not discriminate in employment and personnel practices on the basis of race, sex, sexual orientation, age, handicap, religion, national origin or any other basis prohibited by applicable law. Hiring, transferring, promotion and termination practices are performed without regard to the above listed items. United Way of Greater Portland has a strong commitment to diversity and inclusion and encourages persons of all types of diversity to apply.

Download the Job Description.

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Volunteer Top Picks of the Month http://www.unitedwaygp.org/volunteer-top-picks-of-the-month/ http://www.unitedwaygp.org/volunteer-top-picks-of-the-month/#comments Wed, 04 Feb 2015 21:33:00 +0000 http://www.unitedwaygp.org/?p=2914 Looking for a way to meet new people while positively impacting the community you live, grow, and work in? Check out this month’s top volunteer picks and get started today.

Snowman Adventure Race Seeks Super Chill Volunteers: Sunday February 8, 8:30am and 1:30pm

The Snowman Adventure Race Fundraiser, a fun mountain bike, run, and sled race (all in costume), will occur in Portland’s East End on Sunday, February 8 and support the Portland Gear Hub, a nonprofit shop of Camp Ketcha and the Community Bicycle Center. Volunteer are needed to assist with set up, registration, and parking, and as course marshals during race times. Sign me up.

Become an American Friend to a New Mainer: Two hours a week for six months 

The American Friends program provides individualized support to refugee families within their first months in the U.S. by matching a volunteer with a recently arrived family.Together they work on becoming acquainted with aspects of American life and learning how to function independently in their new surroundings. FMI: Bethany Sack, bethanys@ccmaine.org or (207) 493-8913.

Help Construct a Home for a Veteran: Thursday, Friday, or Saturday (all February), 8:30am-3:30pm

Habitat for Humanity / 7 Rivers Maine has officially “closed in” its veterans’ build under construction in Brunswick. Construction volunteers are welcome. No experience necessary; training is provided. FMI or to sign up for a volunteer shift, contact Michele Ober at (207) 504-9335 or michele@habitat7rivers.org.

View our February 2015 Volunteer Newsletter for all the picks of the month. If you don’t see what you are looking for, visit Get Connected to search all upcoming service projects and find one that is right for you.

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Raise Your Voice on EITC Awareness Day http://www.unitedwaygp.org/raise-your-voice-on-eitc-awareness-day/ http://www.unitedwaygp.org/raise-your-voice-on-eitc-awareness-day/#comments Thu, 29 Jan 2015 21:08:00 +0000 http://www.unitedwaygp.org/?p=2911 Raise Your Voice on EITC Awareness Day

Many people struggle to get by, even working multiple jobs. In fact, more than half of all households in Maine earn less than $55,000. As well, a Federal Bureau of Economic Analysis found that Mainers spent more than the national average on goods and services including gasoline, groceries, and health care, which means there is less to save.

That’s why it’s so important to promote awareness and strengthen the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC), a tax credit to help low-wage working individuals and families (earning $60,000 or less in 2014) keep more of what they earn. Research shows the tax credit encourages work, reduces poverty, and leads to long-term gains in child health and educational success.

That’s why United Way of Greater Portland, our community partners, and volunteers are taking action to connect people to the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC). Based on the latest IRS figures, CA$H Maine estimates that 20 percent of qualifying Maine households leave more than 40 million of these tax credits unclaimed in a given year. Let’s change that! Help us spread the word.

There are three important ways you can take action this EITC Awareness Day – January 30, 2015.

  1. Spread the word: Share this tweet and like our post on Facebook.
  2. Dial 2-1-1 to find the CA$H Greater Portland site nearest you.
  3. Send this message to your Members of Congress letting them know how important the Earned Income Tax Credit and Child Tax Credit are in our community.

Thanks for taking action – because change doesn’t happen without you.

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ASL Tax Day: February 28 http://www.unitedwaygp.org/asl-tax-day-february-28/ http://www.unitedwaygp.org/asl-tax-day-february-28/#comments Tue, 20 Jan 2015 20:51:49 +0000 http://www.unitedwaygp.org/?p=2875 ASL Tax Day: February 28

While there are more than 12,000 locations across the country providing free tax preparation assistance, few programs have American Sign Language (ASL) interpretersTakeAllTheCredit.Website_Blog
available for Deaf people who use ASL to communicate.

For the last five years, CA$H Greater Portland and the Maine Center on Deafness have partnered for an annual ASL Tax Day. Greater Portland ASL Tax Day for 2015 will be held on February 28.

The Internal Revenue Service Stakeholder Partnerships, Education, and Communication (SPEC) is taking the Maine program nationwide. The IRS is exploring eight to ten cities with significant populations of deaf and hard of hearing taxpayers.

The Maine program provides ASL interpreters the opportunity to earn Continuing Education Units for participating in ASL Tax Day. In Maine, every ASL interpreter must be licensed to work for compensation, and state licensure rules require a certain number of ‘contact hours’ in workshops taken yearly to maintain one’s license.

A 2-3 hour workshop was created in Maine for the interpreters to better prepare for the ASL Tax Day and any subsequent tax preparation they may be called upon to interpret in the future. Workshops are usually priced at $10 per contact hour, so ASL interpreters and ASL students would normally pay $20 or $30 for the training.

Volunteers are now being accepted for ASL Tax Day in Portland on February 28. Sign language interpreters, VITA tax preparers (signing or not) or Intake & Asset Guides (signing or not) are needed. If you would like to volunteer for ASL Tax Day or would like more information, dial 2-1-1 to find your local CA$H Coalition in Maine. VideoPhone callers use 1-866-811-5695

Since 2004, CA$H Greater Portland (Creating Assets, Savings and Hope) has assisted more than 6,000 individuals and families receive more than $10.9 million in federal and state income tax refunds and apply for $3.2 million in federal Earned Income Tax Credits.

ASL Tax Day is a service of Maine Center on Deafness, CA$H Greater Portland, United Way of Greater Portland, Internal Revenue Service, and Goodwill Industries of Northern New England.


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United Ways Day at the Statehouse: 2015 http://www.unitedwaygp.org/united-ways-day-at-the-statehouse-2015/ http://www.unitedwaygp.org/united-ways-day-at-the-statehouse-2015/#comments Fri, 16 Jan 2015 21:31:25 +0000 http://www.unitedwaygp.org/?p=2865 United Way Day at the State House: 2015

By Alysia Melnick, Director of Financial Stability and Public Policy at United Way of Greater Portland

The United Ways of Maine Team

The United Ways of Maine Team

On Tuesday, January 13, all 10 United Ways of Maine came together in the Hall of Flags at the State House to connect with lawmakers and share information about the issues and opportunities of the upcoming legislative session. It was a great day. The education, financial stability, and health work of United Ways of Maine were represented from York to Aroostook County and everywhere in between.

We were also able to inform legislators about 2-1-1, a vital and comprehensive statewide directory of over 8,000 available health and human services available in Maine that can direct constituents to a wide variety of resources including heating assistance, disaster relief, volunteer opportunities, and free tax preparation.

Heather Pouliot of United Way of Kennebec Valley and Senator Roger Katz

Heather Pouliot of United Way of Kennebec Valley and Senator Roger Katz

Representatives and Senators from around the state stopped by throughout the morning to connect with their United Way, learn about the great work of United Way partners and programs, and discuss upcoming bills of interest related to education, financial stability, and health.

Rep. Matt Pouliot (R-Augusta) shared more about his bill to address student loan debt, Senator Nate Libby (D-Lewiston) and Peter Stuckey (D-Portland) talked to us about their bill of improving the structure of the Earned Income Tax Credit, and Senator Rebecca Millett (D-Cape Elizabeth) told us more about community schools. It was great to hear what was on the minds of these and other Representatives and Senators.

Alysia Melnick, Director of Financial Stability and Public Policy United Way of Greater Portland, and Peter Stuckey

Alysia Melnick, Director of Financial Stability and Public Policy at United Way of Greater Portland (UWGP), and Peter Stuckey

We then capped the morning off by joining the Maine Children’s Growth Council (of which United Ways of Maine are a member) for a legislative reception. The Maine Children’s Growth Council provides a voice for early childhood in Maine and their reception provided a particularly appropriate end to the day considering the United Ways of Maine 2015 advocacy priorities for 2015 focus on early childhood.

Barbara Reinertsen, Executive Director at United Way of Mid Coast, Rep. Stuckey, Dan Coyne, Sr. VP Community Impact and Liz Cotter Schlax, President and CEO at United Way of Greater Portland

Barbara Reinertsen, ED at United Way of Mid Coast; Rep. Stuckey; Dan Coyne, Sr. VP Community Impact at UWGP; and Liz Cotter Schlax, President and CEO at UWGP

The Council presented some sobering information about child development and how Maine children rank in terms of accessing quality early childhood care and education. Particularly striking were statistics illustrating the fundamental importance of the first couple years of life to long term success and financial stability. In fact, according to Harvard research, we can predict before age 3 (by 30 months) with 75% accuracy whether a child will graduate from high school. Despite the critical importance of reading to early and long term success, only 37% of Maine’s 4th graders are reading proficient.

There are going to be lots of difficult decisions to be made this upcoming session and the importance of early childhood education cannot be overstated. The United Ways of Maine are committed to promoting passage of bills which:

  • Increase high quality child care and pre-kindergarten programs;
  • Increase support, engagement and education through research-based home visiting programs;
  • Maintain the Fund for Healthy Maine and its focus on health and early prevention such as child care subsidies and Head Start;
  • Strengthen financial stability for low-income households with children; and
  • Develop statewide kindergarten readiness screening.

Stay tuned for updates on these and many other issues including funding for essential needs like healthcare, general assistance, and TANF; bills to address Maine’s aging population and drug addiction crisis; and legislation to improve access to affordable, quality higher education.

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Let’s Go! Cumberland Recognizes 56 Sites of Distinction http://www.unitedwaygp.org/lets-go-cumberland-recognizes-56-sites-of-distinction/ http://www.unitedwaygp.org/lets-go-cumberland-recognizes-56-sites-of-distinction/#comments Tue, 13 Jan 2015 21:45:57 +0000 http://www.unitedwaygp.org/?p=2840 Let’s Go! Cumberland Recognizes 56 Sites of Distinction

By Ashley Edmondson, Let’s Go! Cumberland County Coordinator Public Health Program, The Opportunity Alliance 

In December, 56 Let’s Go! sites in Cumberland County were recognized for their commitment to helping children and families eat healthy and be active. Schools, out-of-school programs, childcare centers and healthcare practices are recognized as a Site of Distinction for their commitment and dedication to creating healthy environments and policies for the children they serve.

Let’s Go! encourages policy- and environmental-level change and recognizes sites at three levels (bronze, silver, and gold) based on the top strategies of Let’s Go!:

1. Provide healthy choices for snacks and celebrations; limit unhealthy choices.
2. Provide water and low fat milk; limit or eliminate sugary beverages.
3. Provide non-food rewards.
4. Provide opportunities for children to get physical activity every day.
5. Limit recreational screen time.

Additionally, healthcare sites were recognized for the following:
1. Provide consistent 5-2-1-0 messaging in offices.
2. Calculate BMI for all patients aged 2 and older.
3. Use the 5-2-1-0 Healthy Habits questionnaire to have a respectful conversation about lifestyles with their patients.

“We are thrilled to honor sites across the state for their dedication to children’s health. All recipients have embraced Let’s Go!’s five priority strategies and many have written these strategies into policy” said Dr. Victoria Rogers, Director of Let’s Go!. “It’s efforts like these that truly impact children’s health and obesity rates.”

Click here for a list of the 2014 Let’s Go! Sites of Distinction.


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Dan and Mike on Maine Points http://www.unitedwaygp.org/dan-and-mike-on-maine-points/ http://www.unitedwaygp.org/dan-and-mike-on-maine-points/#comments Wed, 10 Dec 2014 19:18:20 +0000 http://www.unitedwaygp.org/?p=2766
Mike Simonds, CEO of Unum U.S. and 2014 Campaign Chair, and Dan Coyne, Senior Vice President of Community Impact, sat down with Mike Violette on WGAN’s Maine Points November 30 show.
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