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November 2016


This is truly a time of thanks and giving for us. As we sprint toward the end of the year, we are taking time out for family, for rest and refreshment, and for giving thanks. We are very blessed by thousands of generous people, clubs, businesses and work teams that join together to make life better for Maine children and families every day.

As we took applications for the Christmas Program, we saw the numbers climb and climb and now we are at more 1,700 requests across the whole State of Maine. This amazing program works because our communities pull together to raise funds and to gather clothing, pajamas, hats, mittens and scarves, books and board games, as well as small and large toys. It also works because hundreds of people volunteer to pick up items, to sort and fill boxes, to help with distribution and make sure families and children are taken care of. We continue to run short on a number of items for older children. Here is the most updated urgent needs list

We are also so very thankful for the tremendous response to our recent Red Stocking Appeal and those that have responded following recent news coverage about our needs. No gift is ever too small. Thank you for trusting us to carefully and responsibly help children and families in need with your gifts.

In sincere gratitude,

Richard Dorian, Executive Director

We Need Your Help to Make Christmas for 1,700 Maine Children

The Christmas Program has reached capacity for applications. Unfortunately, we have a limit on the number of children we can serve each year. With the help of hundreds of volunteers and staff, we are now busy packing more than 1,700 boxes of new clothing and gifts for children across Maine.

As the Christmas season draws near, we are struggling to complete the boxes for pick-up as we lack donations. Our dilemma this year is that our stored inventory runs out faster than new donations arrive. There is always a period of time that we struggle to keep enough inventory on hand to keep our packing process moving forward.

The most urgent needs include popular boys and girls toys, warm pajamas and outfits sizes 2 through 12, and craft sets and books for all levels up to age 12. You can find a full list of donation needs at the link here

You may have recently seen our story in Central Maine Newspapers and Portland Press Herald, and on WABI5WCSH6 and WMTW8

Christmas Program boxes unable to be completed due to the lack 
of donations at this time.

A BIG thank you, from the bottom of 1,700 little hearts, to those who have supported the Christmas Program with donations of items or money, or volunteered their time to support this program! We appreciate your generosity. 

Please note: If you're looking for Christmas support, visit, or call your local town office, food bank, school or your caseworker for other options in your area.

If you love Amazon!

We've updated our Amazon Wish List with items needed for the Christmas Program to make shopping fun and easy! If you'd like to send a package from Amazon, please ship your packages to:

The Maine Children's Home for Little Wanderers, Building 3
93 Silver Street, Waterville, ME 04901
Attention: Cristen Sawyer

If you wish to receive written acknowledgement, please include a gift message with your full name and address in the body of the message. Or, email Cristen with your information and an itemized list of what you have ordered at  

Please Remember: 

At you can shop just like you always do on Amazon, but for every purchase you make, they will give to a charity of your choice. Please select The Maine Children's Home as your charity of choice!

We greatly appreciate your kindness and support!

Agency Report Card

Maine Children's Home agency report for August 2016

Recent Community Support

Family Donates Car to Help Teen Parent School Program's Students

The Knickles-Tierney family generously donated a 2005 Honda Pilot for the Teen Parent School Program and alternative students' transportation needs. 

Laura Tierney was a 2016 graduate from Colby College who had visited our campus as part of a class. Laura and her classmates were eager to support students to find new transportation options for getting them to and from school and work, or to take driver's education. They helped start a small transportation fund at AOS#92 for the Teen Parent School Program and alternative students.  

Laura made an appeal to her parents not to trade in their 2005 Honda Pilot, but to donate it to The Maine Children's Home to benefit the transportation fund. Thank you to Laura and the Knickles-Tierney family for your thoughtfulness, generosity and vision to help our students!

Becky Judd, Sharon Abrams Teen Parent School Program director, Kim Knickles, car donor and Pam Mattos, AOS#92 Alternative School director.

Waterville Fire Department Visits The Children's Place

The Children's Place hosted guests from the Waterville Fire Department for fire prevention and awareness training. This exposure increases awareness and openness for students. They were able to see the firemen put on their fire safety gear, tour a fire engine and receive a junior fire fighter helmet.

The Children's Place students enjoying a visit from the fire department.

Another Visitor to The Children's Place

Becky Judd, Sharon Abrams Teen Parent School Program director, brought her little horse, Bandit, to visit with the children at The Children's Place recently. The full-grown little horse is only about waist high for most adults. The children were fascinated with her height, soft fur and beautiful mane. They enjoyed learning about what Bandit eats and how to take care of a little horse. Bandit seemed to enjoy the campus visit, touring several buildings and going on an elevator ride.

Bandit visiting The Children's Place children.

Friends Group Designed Tree for Sukeforth Festival of Trees

Did you catch the Friends of The Maine Children's Home's tree at the Sukeforth Festival of Trees that took place at the Hathaway Creative Center in Waterville? The theme was "baby shower." 

Friends organization volunteers pose by the "baby shower" tree.

Celebrating National Adoption Awareness Month

In honor of November being National Adoption Awareness Month, The Maine Children's Home's adoption team participated in the Maine State House Hall of Flags adoption awareness event, and opened the department's new space on campus for an open house.

Maine State House Hall of Flags Adoption Awareness Celebration

Several staff from The Maine Children's Home's adoption program were in attendance at the DHHS Annual Adoption Awareness Month celebration in the Hall of Flags at the Maine State House in Augusta.

The focus of this event was to highlight and thank foster parents who have made adoptions this year. Several agencies that offer foster care and adoption services were present, and we were pleased to have an information table about our adoption services!

Lindsay Bragdon, Cindy Smith, Caroline Hutchinson, Rick Dorian and Angie Woodhead at the Maine State House Hall of Flags for the Adoption Awareness Month celebration.

Adoption Program Open House 

The Maine Children's Home was pleased to hold an open house for the new location of the George J. and Mary S. Mitchell adoption unit on the Terrace Level of the Parks Building on campus.

Several board and community members were present to tour the expanded lending library and to see the expanded adoption unit.

Victoria and John Veilleux were also recognized for their generosity to help refurbish the Terrace Level. This gift of time and skill made it possible to make other accommodations on the unit. Their concern and commitment to the health and well-being of children and families is deeply appreciated.

Adoption program open house at The Maine Children's Home.


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Our Hague-accredited adoption program, Maine's longest-operating adoption program, provides expert assistance to those hoping to adopt internationally or domestically. more »

The Harland A. Turner Counseling Center

Offering outpatient mental health counseling, specializing in play and art therapy and adoption counseling. more »

Adoption Counseling

Specialized counseling for people considering adoption as well as adoptive parents, birth parents, and adoptees of all ages. more »

The Sharon Abrams Teen Parent School Program

Providing education, counseling and guidance to pregnant and parenting teens. more »

The Children's Place

Delivering nationally accredited early care and education to children 6 weeks old to age 5. more »

The Christmas Program

The only program of its kind providing new clothing, books, games and toys to underprivileged children throughout Maine. more »

Summer Camp Scholarships

Providing an overnight camp experience to approximately 150 disadvantaged Maine children each year.more »

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