CCC Wednesday Communique — November 22, 2023

The CCC wishes everyone a very warm, happy Thanksgiving!
(The Graphics Fairy — Vintage Images) 

Happy Wednesday!

New this week:

Behavioral Health Career & Field Placement Fair

Northern Light is extending a booth invitation for their 1st Annual Behavioral Health Career & Field Placement Fair from 10 am — 2 pm on January 19th.  Here is the official invite to participate — registration is free. We do have one ask: if at all possible, please have a Umaine graduate currently working in the field, for the jobs you are hoping to fill, with you. We are attempting to make this a unique event that is not filled with HR representatives, but people who are closer to the work who can talk with the students directly about working in the field and answer their questions.  For those participating, I will also shoot out an invite to attend the career fair when it is has been finalized for you to share on social media platforms, etc. We are also working on small panels to represent some entry level work for another opportunity to ask questions and gain insight.  Please register by December 17th so we can assure we have the right amount of space reserved for those who wish to participate and let me know if you have any questions. We are really hoping to make this a fun, exciting event to showcase all the wonderful opportunities we have available to work in this field.

Exploring Food Insecurity: How Do We Fill Our Plates?

Webinar sponsored by Hannaford Supermarkets on Tuesday November 28th, 2 – 3:30 pm.  A 2021 Feeding America study showed that out of 78 million people aged 60 and over, 7.1% are food insecure and 2.7% are experiencing very low food security in the United States. In this webinar, we’ll explore the issues that contribute to food insecurity and how Northern New England states are addressing the issue among older people. How can the data from these states inform initiatives and program replication across state lines?  Join us to hear success stories and ask questions about best practices and lessons learned while we discuss the state of food insecurity across our region and share what we are doing to help older adults by getting nutritious food and resources out into our communities. If you can’t join us live, this event will be recorded for later access.  Register here.

WHRL’s annual Winter Festival & Auction

WHRL’s annual Winter Festival & Auction begins on Saturday, December 2nd, with an appearance from The Grinch.  New this year is our Toy Drive for children.  Toy donations may be delivered to the WHRL office during the Winter Festival auction hours:

  • Saturday, Dec 2nd: 9 am – 4 pm
  • Sunday, Dec 3rd: Noon – 3 pm
  • Monday, Dec 4th: 10:30 am – 3 pm
  • Tuesday, Dec 5th: 10:30 am to 6 pm

All donations will benefit children in our community. For more information, visit our website.

2 Upcoming Workshops at Cobscook Institute
  • Mosaic Frames & Ornaments with Meri Fern, Saturday, December 2nd, 10 am — 3 pm.  Register here.
  • Ski Care Clinic with Maria McMorrow, Saturday, December 4th, 5 – 8 pm. Register here.

Winter Ecology Weekend

January 18th-21st – An immersive weekend of study, trips and community at Cobscook Institute.  With a weather flexible schedule this new experience is being supported by our Birding Festival Guides and hosted at Cobscook Institute. Come stay for the weekend or join us as a commuter to deep dive into the ecology of winter. Outside expeditions will be placed on the nicest days and inside study will fill any cold bitterness. The Weekend Includes:
  • 1 Rugged Boat Trip to Head Harbor Passage out of Eastport
  • Nature Sketching with Michael Boardman
  • Guided Trips, Talks and Discussions focused on Winter Ecology, Botany and more with expert guides.
  • Lunches Thursday-Sunday
  • Dinners Thursday-Saturday

December Biz Fit – Extended Time

Whether or not you participated in our July Biz Fit that addressed getting ready for the holidays, you can come to this session ready to discuss and learn from each other about winter business prep.  What are you thinking of to leverage holiday sales or production?  Feel overwhelmed and don’t even know what you don’t know?  How do you take care of yourself while taking care of your business in this potentially frantic time?  During this interactive session, we’ll address how you keep your BUSINESS and YOURSELF balanced, sustainable and vital in the months ahead.  In small groups we’ll discuss, then share all together:
  • External Business Communications (Marketing, outreach, promotions etc.),
  • Internal Business Practices (Operations, financials, HR, etc.),
  • Personal (Self-care as a business owner).
  • This will be a supportive and engaging time together to learn, discover, and build the strength of our businesses, especially with a holiday / winter focusLet’s meet over a cup of morning coffee or tea. (You may want a power breakfast for this session!) This is an informal space for women to confidentially connect, network, and learn together about keeping their business, and themselves, fit!  December 1st, 8 – 9:30 am.  Register here.

Wreaths For Hope
The fight against cancer never takes a holiday

Once again, the holiday season is fast approaching and everyone at Wreaths For Hope® is excited to reconnect with the people who have supported the fight against cancer and the mission to help veterans and their families in need. The people at Wreaths for Hope are so proud of what they have been able to accomplish, but there’s more to be done. The Fight Against Cancer Never Takes a Holiday and neither does Compassion. The time is now…so when buying your wreath this holiday season, choose one that provides hope for someone who needs it most. For more information go to the Wreaths for Hope website.

Input Needed for University of Maine Cooperative Extension
Strategic Planning

The University of Maine Cooperative Extension (UMaine Extension) has partnered with the UF/IFAS Center for Public Issues Education in Agriculture and Natural Resources (PIE Center) to conduct a needs and resources assessment of our clients, program participants, employees, and partners. We believe the PIE Center will be able to assist UMaine Extension in achieving the following goals:

  • Understand public awareness of UMaine Extension.
  • Provide UMaine Extension programming and resources that are based on community needs, including but not limited to, historically and currently underserved people.
  • Respond to pressing needs of Maine residents.
  • Support all communities.
  • Build upon UMaine Extension’s successes and identify priorities for the future.
  • Remain grounded in the organization’s principles and values, central to the land-grant mission.

Who should complete the portal questions? ANY University of Maine employee and/or anyone familiar with UMaine Extension (such as our Spoonful subscribers). The online Statewide Community Needs Assessment Data Collection portal is open and closes November 19, 2023, and can be accessed by clicking this link: UMaine Extension Statewide Community Needs Assessment Data Collection Portal. You can view a copy of the survey questions before responding to the online portal. Thank you for taking the time to provide your feedback about the University of Maine Cooperative Extension. Your input will assist us in better meeting the needs of the people of Maine.

Two big changes are here for TANF in Maine!

  1. More Support for Education and Training started October 1st!  LD 1748 – An Act to Improve the TANF Program and to Improve the LIFT Report – got the support of the whole Health and Human Services Committee, was passed by the Legislature, and signed by Governor Mills. This bill will help more parents in Maine pursue education and training for better job opportunities.  Education and training options for TANF participants in ASPIRE and the Parents as Scholars (PAS) program can open doors to better jobs, better pay and hours, and economic stability for Maine families. But even though many TANF participants are very interested in higher education and job training, not enough of them are hearing about these opportunities or being helped to apply and receive all the benefits TANF offers.
  2. Higher Asset Limit and better access to TANF started October 15th. LD 945 – An Act to Allow Maine Families to Increase Their Savings by Removing Asset Limits for Eligibility for the TANF Program.  As of October 15, 2023, the asset test for TANF is now $10,000 per household, with a vehicle exempted for every licensed driver.  Families should be able to save for more unexpected costs and long term needs without fear of losing their income support through TANF.  By increasing the asset limit from $2,000 to $10,000, Maine families will be able to build their savings to create lasting economic independence, and more families who need it will be able to access TANF in the first place.

Read more about these changes and how parents in the TANF program can take advantage of these new opportunities.

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