CONTACT: Donna Dwyer, Executive Director
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Westbrook’s My Place Teen Center Receives $325,000 Grant from Next Generation Foundation

front of building 10 14(Westbrook, Maine) – For the first time in its 16 years of existence, My Place Teen Center (MPTC) of Westbrook will own its Main Street property outright after receiving a grant in the amount of $325,000 from the Next Generation Foundation of Maine, paying off, in full, a 40-year note.

It’s been a great fall season for MPTC. The single, largest gift ever bestowed upon MPTC, which only two months ago was named this year’s Agency of Distinction among all Maine non-profits at WCSH-TV’s “6 Who Care” awards ceremony.

In an email to MPTC executive director Donna Dwyer informing her of the grant, the Trustees said that just under a quarter million dollars would be dedicated to paying off MPTC’s mortgage on its Main Street location with “remaining funds to be used toward some of the exterior building repairs and any other repairs deemed necessary.”

The Next Generation Foundation’s mission, according to its web site, “is to improve health, education, and societal support for the most vulnerable populations of Maine” with specific interest areas focusing on “children, elderly and [the] displaced, basic human needs, education, and programs that enhance human health, social equality or Maine’s economy and workforce.”

All laudable goals, to be sure, which is why there are hundreds of non-profit organizations that the foundation could have granted. What set MPTC apart, remarked the Trustees, was the quality of its leadership and the impact the grant will have on the community receiving it.

“It is clear that MPTC has a high horsepower director,” said the Trustees referring to Dwyer. “When there’s strong leadership and the organization is on an upswing, that’s when a grant can make the most difference because it will be used responsibly and for the most impact.”

For her part, Dwyer is ecstatic about the award and feels that it reaffirms the importance of MPTC’s mission, which is driven to respond to the urgent need to keep kids in school, yearn for something beyond their present moment, and to accept social responsibility. The Center also provides academic assistance through tutoring, study skills, the Learning Technology Lab, and Science, Technology, English and Math (STEM) programming.

“There’s always hope when offering unconditional love, demonstrating clear values and showing that we care,” says Dwyer. “We’re in the business of transforming kids’ lives. It’s that simple.”

Each year, My Place Teen Center (MPTC) provides each child with access to 1,300 hours of year-round programming and 260 hot, healthy meals. All services and meals are provided in a safe, nurturing and educational environment at no cost to children and their families.