ELLSWORTH & PORTLAND – In its first year of grantmaking, the Maine Community Foundation’s Start Up/Scale Up Grant Program is providing $200,000 to 10 Maine nonprofit organizations that are helping new ventures start and grow through shared workspaces and incubator and accelerator programs.
The 2020 grantees are:
Catholic Charities of Maine, Lewiston, to create a makerspace that will develop skilled immigrant textile workers through onsite textile businesses from contract work for manufacturers
Coastal Enterprises, Inc., Brunswick, to expand its programming to support, advise, and guide rural women entrepreneurs
Engine, Inc., Biddeford, to launch IGNITE incubator in partnership with the Office of Innovation and Economic Development at the University of Maine to support entrepreneurs whose competitive advantage is design
Main Street Skowhegan, to support Scale Up Skowhegan, a plan for economic growth that is grounded in data, encourages innovation and entrepreneurship, and supports business development
New England Arab American Organization, Portland, to launch an entrepreneurship program for Arab American and New Mainer women so they may gain skills, support and knowledge about starting small businesses
Our Katahdin, to develop affordable space in downtown Millinocket to incubate small businesses and create a vibrant environment for entrepreneurs and community to connect and access resources
Piscataquis Regional Food Center, Dover-Foxcroft, to develop a strategic plan for acquiring specialized commercial food processing equipment as part of a program to incubate regional food product businesses
Sunrise County Economic Council, Machias, to provide co-working space, broadband access and training, programming for cohorts, and business incubators for Washington County small businesses
Tear Cap Workshops, Hiram, to support Rent-a-Bench makerspace program and to develop a new workspace for an entrepreneur or artisan
UpStart Maine Inc., Orono, to build a pool of mentors in the Bangor region available to scalable startup companies in the programs of the UpStart Maine coalition
The next deadline for applications is April 1, 2021. For application and guidelines, visit mainecf.org. Questions about the grant program should be directed to Senior Program Officer Maggie Drummond-Bahl at email@example.com or 207-412-0839.
Caption: Sean DeWitt, president of Our Katahdin, highlights opportunities for the future of the Katahdin region economy during the Katahdin Summit in Millinocket in January 2020. Photo John Hafford, Designlab
Headquartered in Ellsworth, with additional personnel in Portland, Dover-Foxcroft and Mars Hill, the Maine Community Foundation works with donors and other partners to provide strong investments, personalized service, local expertise, and strategic giving to improve the quality of life for all Maine people. To learn more about the foundation, visit mainecf.org.