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Maine Service Fellows Development

November 28, 2018

In Attendance: Maryalice Crofton, Libby Hite, Ed Barrett, Orion Breen

Intro to the Maine Service Fellows concept:

  • Checked in to ensure everyone had a sound understanding of the goal for standing up the Maine Service Fellows program. Our goal is to drive a pilot program ready to go live in Fall 2019.
  • Maryalice briefed the group on past Maine state legislation that was drafted but never became a bill. This legislation could be revisited. 

Program Development:

  • Reviewed MA Service Alliance materials and discussed what pieces we would consider keeping and revising to meet the needs of Maine.
  • It was decided that MSF would look to place volunteers only in the underserved/rural areas of the state (high need/low organizational capacity areas). Suggestions for the name of this focus area included Rural Restoration or Rural Improvement. We will strive to fill in the gaps where currently there are few other resources. We will approach organizations that are working on key issues the program strives to address. It was suggested to use the Service Enterprise Diagnostic Assessment as a tool for identifying the organizations’ developmental needs. Sarah Seames at Bowdoin McKeen Center was suggested as a possible partner site.
  • One goal will be to create a simple and manageable application/application process. Maryalice will follow up with Island Institute to get a copy of their community application.
  • Fellows will serve addressing the four key areas identified as the state’s greatest needs through the 2018 Strategic Planning process – Aging in Place, Transportation, Food Security, Opioids.
  • Eligible Fellows will be 18 years or older. Unless there is a reason why there is a cap on the age is necessary, we decided not to put limitations on this criteria.
  • Considered various benefits that could be offered to Fellows in the future after successful completion of the program (ie. In-state tuition for those who relocate to serve, loan forgiveness, etc). Right now, the primary benefit that we can offer is stipend.
  • Discussed the issue that in Maine, if a member were to receive significant benefits from their service, the organization would be required to consider them an employee. Maryalice will connect with the Island Institute to learn how they manage this issue.

Action Items:

  • Maryalice – connect with Island Institute to learn how they manage the matter of benefits and how that interfaces with the requirement that members receiving significant benefits requires them to be considered employees. She will also obtain a copy of their community application.
  • Libby – draft promotional one pager to be sent around for review and with a goal of finalizing in December.
  • Orion to set up a meeting with Bowdoin College as a potential partner agency.

Monthly meeting day/time:

  • Meetings will be held at 1:00 pm on the 3rd Wednesday of each month. Libby will send an outlook meeting invite for future meetings. Next Meeting is December 19th at 1pm.