My Place Teen Center is in the news. Read more to see what people are saying about our vision, our work, and our impact on the community.

Westbrook Teen Center gets federal funding to expand

April 19, 2024

The teen center is getting $650K to finish its restoration project at a former Biddeford church.


‘Harbinger of hope’: $650K boost for Biddeford teen center under construction in former church

April 17, 2024

My Place Teen Center, a Westbrook-based nonprofit, has been awarded $650,000 in federal funding toward the $3.7 million construction of a second center, in downtown Biddeford. The center, set to open in September, will be housed in the former St. Andre’s Church. “A pure labor of love and longevity,” My Place Teen Center Executive Director Donna Dwyer said of the renovation project in progress. “Find a way — there’s always a way.”


Beyond Giving Tuesday: Here’s what 5 Maine nonprofit leaders have planned for 2024

November 28, 2023

Giving Tuesday, a day dedicated to charitable causes around the globe, has been celebrated every year on the Tuesday after Thanksgiving since 2012. To mark this year’s occasion, Mainebiz checked in with five Maine nonprofit leaders to see what they have planned for 2024. Here’s what they said.


My Place Teen Center “money well spent” York County officials say during tour

November 7, 2023

The painters have begun their work at St. Andre Church on Bacon Street in Biddeford as part of a major renovation of the former house of worship to be home for My Place Teen Center.


St. Andre Church in Biddeford undergoing major renovation.

April 20, 2023

An iconic and neglected Biddeford landmark is getting a second lease on life, thanks to a group of volunteers and others who are working to repurpose the former St. Andre Church on Bacon Street to create an expanded community teen center.


Westbrook teen center’s culinary program teaches knife skills and life skills.

March 17, 2023

The 5-year-old program at My Place Teen Center gives students a sense of accomplishment, knowledge about nutrition and workplace experience.


Footballer pays tribute to My Place Teen Center

March 13, 2023

Miece Loureiro was starting to get into trouble in sixth grade, so he had to make a change. He credits My Place Teen Center for providing him with the opportunity he needed. A 2017 graduate of Westbrook High School where he was a star football player, Loureiro is now a running back for a professional football team in Toulouse, France.


My Place Teen Center has been helping kids in Maine for 25 years

March 2, 2023

The center serves 80 to 100 kids a day at its Westbrook and new Biddeford location. Now, kids who spent time at the center are paying it forward as staff members. More

High Five for Teen Center Restaurant Job Training Program

February 9, 2023

My Place Teen Center in Westbrook is celebrating its fifth year of offering its successful Restaurant Job Training Program to at-risk middle and high school youth. “(The program) operates as if teens are employed in real-world restaurant jobs, with the expectation teens are present, punctual and willing to learn,” Dwyer said.


Home is where the heart is

February 8, 2023

Grit. It’s what defines My Place Teen Center as an organization and where Donna Dwyer and her team focus with the kids who come to this after-school oasis. Hannaford has supported My Place Teen Center through the Bloomin’ 4 Good and Community Bag Programs.


An Interview with Donna Dwyer

November 2022

We chat with Donna Dwyer of My Place Teen Center. We discuss the recent expansion to the Saco/Biddeford area, adding to their longtime Westbrook facility, and discuss some of the crucial ways they help local youths in need of food assistance, structured after school activities and career-based support programs. We also talk about MPTC’s role during the early stages of the pandemic.


Kitchen Skills Build Confidence

Spring 2022

A nonprofit offers training for restaurants. For years, a nonprofit in a renovated church in Westbrook has served as a beacon for children and teenagers in Cumberland and York counties needing a space to safely be themselves when school isn’t in session.


My Place Teen Center Looks to 2023 Biddeford Opening

February 24, 2022

My Place Teen Center Inc., is targeting July or August 2023 for the opening of a big new space for youth in Biddeford. To seal the deal, York County Commissioners, which in October had allocated $1.5 million in American Rescue Plan Act funds toward the renovation of the former St. Andre Church on Bacon Street…


My Place Teen Center Offers Resources to Children in Need

January 4, 2022

My Place Teen Center is the brainchild of Westbrook community members. In 1996, many people came forward and requested that local officials assist them in finding a way to mitigate the rise of teen suicides and substance use disorder.


Westbrook Center Offers Food, Warmth to Maine Teens in Need

December 1, 2021

Many Maine teens are living without a home, enough food or family support. “When I first came here, I was a very angry person,” Muna Dore, who gets help from the Westbrook Teen Center, said. Dore moved to Maine when she was 15 years old. “When I saw kids coming into this little building with a red door and I’m like, ‘I wonder what’s inside,’” Dore said.


My Place Teen Center Continues to Grow During Pandemic

November 22, 2021

The use of the Westbrook center has more than doubled in the past few years, and its expansion into Biddeford is providing a much-needed service, the Biddeford mayor says. My Place Teen Center in Westbrook has seen nearly double the number of kids come through its doors since the pandemic began, expanded programming for older teens and young adults and added staff, all while opening an additional center in Biddeford.


Saco and Biddeford Savings donates $50,000 to support My Place Teen Center’s York County location

October 7, 2021

Saco & Biddeford Savings has gifted $50,000 to support the Biddeford expansion of My Place Teen Center. The funds will be used toward renovation and furnishings for the new location at 75 Bacon St, which is projected to open in 2023.


York County Commissioners approve $1.5 million for My Place Teen Center in Biddeford

October 7, 2021

The quest to bring My Place Teen Center to Biddeford took a giant leap forward Wednesday, with a unanimous vote by York County Commissioners to approve up to $1.5 million in American Rescue Plan funds for the project.


Patriots Present Patriots Difference Maker

October 1, 2021

Throughout the 2021 season, the Kraft family and the New England Patriots Foundation will recognize 17 local volunteers with the “Patriots Difference Maker of the Week Award.” Anita Johnston from Gorham, Maine was selected as a 2021 Patriots Difference Maker of the Week for her commitment to My Place Teen Center in Westbrook, Maine.


My Place Teen Center: Pandemic taking toll on youth

May 12, 2021

As the Westbrook organization prepares to expand to York County, it is doubling down on helping teens deal with depression and pandemic-related stress. My Place Teen Center’s CEO is worried for the children and their heightened needs amid the pandemic.


My Place Teen Center to open temporary location at Saco Valley Shopping Center

May 6, 2021

Organizers say the former St. Andre Church location is still very much in the mix, and a reinvigorated fundraising effort will kick off to renovate the Biddeford church as a permanent home for the teen center.


Mainers Who Inspire Maine

April 12, 2021

A radio interview with My Place Teen Center President and CEO, Donna Dwyer. Click to listen below.


2021 forecast for Maine’s nonprofit sector: More need, more challenges in year ahead

January 11, 2021

After a bumpy ride for many Maine nonprofits during COVID, the head of the Maine Association of Nonprofits predicts a challenging 2021 for a sector that employs one in six Maine workers.


My Place Teen Center ramps up help despite funding losses

November 2, 2020

Not only would they be serving food to the kids, but their families. And before long, they were serving the whole community, because the whole community might be hurting, and that includes the elderly, people who have disabilities, people who all of a sudden lost their jobs. They serve anyone. More

Westbrook nonprofit seeks funds to keep new mission going

October 22, 2020

A Westbrook nonprofit that’s transformed into a mobile food pantry during the pandemic is determined to overcome a $300,000 shortfall that represents more than a third of its annual operating budget. MyPlace Teen Center, headed by President and CEO Donna Dwyer, normally provides an after-school oasis for at-risk youth ages 10 to 18 and has an annual operating budget of about $970,000.


Maine teen center adapts to serve community, faces $300K funding loss

October 21, 2020

My Place Teen Center in Westbrook has had to adapt to continue serving the community during the coronavirus pandemic, but it is also facing a serious loss in funding. The teen center has delivered more than 25,000 dinners to people in need, which is a record.


‘Go ahead and do it’: Business trailblazers talk leadership in Mainebiz forum

June 11, 2020

Wednesday’s hour-long discussion, moderated by Mainebiz Publisher Donna Brassard, was peppered with insights, personal anecdotes and advice from all five panelists on the leadership principles. Dwyer: Engage people and challenge the process.


Teen Center Steps Up, But Needs Help

April 15, 2020

My Place Teen Center is offering hundreds of free family meals to the community in response to the coronavirus pandemic. The teen center moved quickly to expand its free meal service to the community at large when the pandemic hit, offering meals to families, seniors and anyone else in need.


Westbrook Teen Center Offering Free Meals

March 24, 2020

WGME reports that in Westbrook, kids can eat for free thanks to My Place Teen Center. The center serves homemade meals Monday through Friday for kids and teens in the area, and now, they’re opening their services to anyone who needs a meal.


‘Right time, right place’ for My Place Teen Center

Nov 28, 2019

Portland Press Herald reports that it is the “right time, right place” for the new expansion of My Place Teen Center, which is to be located in former St. Andre Church, in the heart of Biddeford. The new center is poised to open September 2020, and it is estimated that between the Westbrook and Biddeford locations, 1,000 young people will be served.


Culinary Program a Way to Connect Kids to Caring, Supportive Adults

Oct 30, 2019

Youth Today, an independent, internationally-distributed digital media publication covering the youth service field, talks with MPTC’s CEO Donna Dwyer about how an innovative chef-led restaurant training program is helping My Place Teen Center reach out to Westbrook area youth.


New Teen Center to Open in  Biddeford

Oct 10, 2019

WMTW talks to MPTC’s Donna Dwyer about a partnership with Southern Maine Affordable Housing to create a permanent safe haven for teens in Biddeford starting in the fall of 2020.


New Teen Center Will Open in Former Biddeford Church

Oct 8, 2019

Portland Press Herald reports on My Place Teen Center’s plans to convert the former St. Andre’s Church into a safe haven for teens and pre-teens. The Biddeford teen center will be a partnership between My Place Teen Center and Southern Maine Affordable Housing.


Westbrook Youth Programs Among 26 Nationwide Awarded New York Life Grants

August 7, 2019

New York Life Foundation has awarded a $100,000 grant to two Westbrook-based nonprofits, My Place Teen Center and Intercultural Community Center. The grant is one of 26 made to youth development organizations nationwide by the foundation.


Local food pantry works with My Place Teen Center teens to help the hungry

June 6, 2019 

Teenagers from the My Place Teen Center joined organizers from the Stroudwater Food Pantry to pack grocery bags full of non-perishable food to help feed communities in Washington County. More

Afterschool Alliance, Met Life Choose MPTC for $100K “Aim High” Grant

June, 2019

New York Life Foundation, in collaboration with Afterschool Alliance, have awarded grants totaling $1.35M to out-of-school time programs serving disadvantaged middle school youth through Aim High. My Place Teen Center was one of only eight groups to be awarded the highest level of award – $100,000 payable over two years.


Restaurant Course Stirs Up Confidence

May 29, 2019

News Center takes an inside look at My Place Teen Center’s restaurant training enrichment course led by chef Christian Kryger, a former head chef at local restaurants including Portland’s Fore Street and Bar Lola. More

MPTC fundraising targets expansion to Biddeford

May 9, 2019

Two decades after starting a program to provide a safe after-school space for area youth, My Place Teen Center’s new fundraising campaign earmarks funds to open a second location in York County. More

MPTC Launches $6.5M Capital Campaign for Expansion in Biddeford

May 2, 2019

MaineBiz covers MPTC’s plans to raise $6.5 million to open a second teen center in July 2020 in the former St. Andre’s Church at 75 Bacon Street in Biddeford. The organization has already raised $2.7 million toward its capital campaign goal. More

Living Life with Lynda

Living Life Show Hosts Donna Dwyer

Apr 23, 2019

The Living Life with Lynda Show takes an in-depth look at non-profit organizations that make a difference in our communities. This week’s show focuses on My Place Teen Center’s powerful impact on area youth with a conversation between the show’s host Lynda Adams and MPTC’s Donna Dwyer. More

Maine Points Hosts My Place Teen Center

April 13, 2019

WGAN News radio features My Place Teen Center in their “Maine Points” podcast with Danny Martignetti. More

Richardson Magazine Names Donna Dwyer “Someone You Should Know”

April, 2019

Donna Dwyer is in the spotlight for April’s edition of Richardson Magazine as “Someone You Should Know.” More

Snack Drive Reaches Food-Insecure Teens

February 11, 2019

News Center looks at how My Place Teen Center provides daily meals for area youth and invites the community to take part in a snack drive. More

Bernstein Shur Clients Choose MPTC

February 8, 2019

Each year for the past 100 years, Bernstein Shur has chosen a beneficiary for its charitable giving. This year, they let their clients vote to select which one of five deserving organizations would receive $10,000. News Center Maine looks at why their choice was My Place Teen Center. More

Maine Women Magazine Profile: MPTC CEO, Donna Dwyer

Read more

Positively Maine Focuses on Westbrook’s Teen Center

Read more

Local Chef Offers Teens Restaurant Training Skills at MPTC

November 29, 2018

My Place Teen Center served more than 9,000 hot meals last year. Now the center is using that service to teach teens the ins and outs of food preparation and restaurant management under the guidance of chef Jesse Blaisdell. More

My Place Teen Center Celebrates 20 Years

May 3, 2018

Twenty years ago, with a $120,000 donation from the Cornelia Warren Association, My Place Teen Center opened in a space on the first floor of the Dana Warp Mill. Keep Me Current takes a closer look at the center’s accomplishments and plans for the future. More

Westbrook Teen Ashton Brown Runs Beach to Beacon for My Place Teen Center

August 3, 2016
News Center follows Ashton Brown as he trains to run this year’s Beach to Beacon 10K race. He plans to run to “give back” to the teen center, in his words, “for everything they’ve done.” This year’s race sponsors have also named MPTC as the beneficiary of the fundraising event, donating $30K to the center.  More

Joan Benoit Samuelson Visits MPTC 

July 12, 2016

MWTW follows olympic gold medalist and Maine native Joan Benoit Samuelson as she tours My Place Teen Center (MPTC). MPTC is the beneficiary of this year’s Beach to Beacon, a popular fundraising race founded by Samuelson with a mission to shine a light on kids. More

‘Songwriters in the Round’ Event Planned to Benefit Teen Center

April 6, 2016
Area musicians, David Good, Dan Merril, Don Campbell, and Steve Romanoff, will share the stage in a special in the round performance to benefit the My Place Teen Center in Westbrook.  More

Beach to Beacon Names My Place Teen Center as 2016 Beneficiary

February 10, 2016

The TD Charitable Foundation announced today that My Place Teen Center, a free, year-round, after-school youth development program for kids at-risk in Greater Portland, has been selected as the beneficiary of the 2016 TD Beach to Beacon 10K Road Race. More

MPTC Volunteer Deb Shangraw Wins “6 Who Care” Award for Advocacy 

October 15, 2015

News Center profiles My Place Teen Center volunteer Deb Shangraw  as one of 2015’s WCHS “6 Who Care” award winners. More

Changing lives: Donna Dwyer rebuilds dilapidated teen center, teen lives

March 23, 2015
When Donna Dwyer approached the at-risk teen center located in a former Westbrook church for a job interview, the building was so run down she says she almost turned around and never returned.


Westbrook Teen Center Offering Free Meals

March 24, 2020

WGME reports that in Westbrook, kids can eat for free thanks to My Place Teen Center. The center serves homemade meals Monday through Friday for kids and teens in the area, and now, they’re opening their services to anyone who needs a meal.


My Place Teen Center Named 2014 Agency of Distinction

November 3, 2014
My Place Teen Center has been announced winner of WCSH’s 2014 “6 Who Care” Agency of Distinction Award for its work serving disabled, homeless, food insecure, cognitively delayed, low-income, immigrants and refugee teens and youth.


After 15 Years, Westbrook Teen Center Renamed

May 16, 2013

What was the Mission Possible Teen Center will now be called My Place Teen Center. More


Press Releases

New York Life Foundation Awards $100,000 Grant to My Place Teen Center and Intercultural Community Center in Westbrook to Support Out-of-School-Time Programs to Help Middle School Students Transition to 9th Grade View

Wells Fargo “Pays It Forward” with Another $10,000 Grant to My Place Teen Center View

My Place Teen Center Receives $14,000 from 100+ Women Who Care View

My Place Teen Center to Announce $6.5M Capital Campaign to Expand Youth Development Programs With a Second Location in Biddeford View