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PRESS RELEASE: Maine Immigrant & Refugee Funders Collaborative Awards $150,000 to Immigrant-Led Organizations in Maine During COVID-19 Pandemic

Maine Immigrant & Refugee Funders Collaborative Awards $150,000 to Immigrant-Led Organizations in Maine During COVID-19 Pandemic

PORTLAND, Maine–The Maine Immigrant & Refugee Funders Collaborative announces $150,000 in grants from the Immigrant-Led Organizations Fund, a grantmaking fund at Maine Initiatives, established in 2017 to support immigrant-led and immigrant-serving organizations in Maine.

These grants will provide critical general operating support to 28 immigrant-led organizations in Maine that are led by and serve Maine’s immigrants, refugees, asylees, migrant farm workers and those who are undocumented. Their invaluable work is all the more important in this moment as we navigate the unique and unprecedented challenges arising from the COVID-19 pandemic.

“These organizations are going to extraordinary lengths to adapt and respond to the needs of their constituents, often without knowing where the funds to back such efforts will come from. We see it as philanthropy’s responsibility to step up, bring resources to the table supporting the organizations that are doing this critical work,” says Shima Kabirigi, Coordinator of the Immigrant & Refugee Funders Collaborative, and Program Officer at Maine Initiatives, which administers the Fund. Grants will fund much-needed direct services and advocacy, including food and resource distribution, the sharing of essential public health information, and coordination of the immigrant community’s response to this pandemic with local and state officials. 

Recipients of grants from the Immigrant-Led Organizations Fund include: 

  • Angolan Community Association
  • Cambodian Community Association of Maine
  • Capital Area New Mainers Project
  • Choose Yourself
  • Congolese Community of Maine
  • Djiboutian American Empowerment Project
  • Gateway Community Services
  • Greater Portland Immigrant Welcome Center
  • Immigrant Resource Center
  • In Her Presence
  • Intercultural Community Center
  • Ladder to the Moon Network (Amjambo Africa)
  • Maine Access Immigrant Network
  • Maine Community Integration
  • Maine Immigrant and Refugee Services
  • Maine Immigrants Rights’ Coalition
  • Mano en Mano
  • New England Arab American Organization
  • New Mainers Public Health Initiative
  • New Roots Cooperative Farm
  • Presente! Maine
  • Prosperity ME
  • Rwandese Community Association
  • Somali Bantu Community Association
  • Somali Community Center of Maine
  • South Sudanese Community Association of Maine
  • Sustainable Livelihoods Relief Organization
  • United Youth Empowerment Services

To learn more about each of these organizations please visit:

For additional information, please contact: 

Shima Kabirigi
Coordinator of the Immigrant & Refugee Funders Collaborative
Program Officer, Maine Initiatives
(207) 749-9044

About the Immigrant & Refugee Funders Collaborative

The Immigrant & Refugee Funders Collaborative comprises 11 foundations committed to supporting immigrants and refugees in Maine. Members include the Betterment Fund, The Clowes Fund, Elmina B. Sewall Foundation, John T. Gorman Foundation, Maine Community Foundation, Maine Initiatives, Maine Health Access Foundation, Maine Women’s Fund, Rocking Moon Foundation, Sam L. Cohen Foundation, and the United Way of Greater Portland. 

About Maine Initiatives

Maine Initiatives, a fund for change, cultivates social, economic, and environmental justice through grants and other support to grassroots organizations in Maine communities. We are a network of more than 2,000 individual donors and activists supporting greater justice and equity in Maine through informed, intentional, and collective philanthropy. To learn more about Maine Initiatives please visit

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