Youth & Community Development Grants | Harold Alfond Foundation

Youth & Community Development

Youth & Community Development Grants

Supporting those who inspire and empower our youth and communities.

Harold Alfond was inspired by many philanthropic causes, especially those which invest in our youth and communities. He and his wife Bibby had a deep love for their community, and for the institutions within the community so important to its health and well-being. They believed every young person, regardless of socio-economic circumstances, should have opportunities necessary to succeed. They knew that strong, vibrant communities were not only necessary to help our youth succeed, but were critical to the future prosperity of Maine. Over the course of their lifetimes, Harold and Bibby supported many charitable causes in the Central Maine communities in which the Alfond family lived and worked.

Today, in the spirit of Harold and Bibby Alfond, the Foundation supports organizations whose missions are to inspire, empower, and serve our youth, and to revitalize the cultural, educational, economic, and geographic assets of our state.

Selected Youth & Community Development Grants

Alfond Youth and Community Center: The nation’s only combined YMCA and Boys and Girls Club, the Alfond Youth Center was established through a lead gift from the Harold Alfond Foundation and a challenge grant from Mr. Alfond to form a one-of-a kind public-private partnership with the City of Waterville. 

The Center is a large recreational facility featuring two swimming pools, a gymnasium, an afterschool center, a kid’s kitchen, a teen center, a climbing wall, gymnastics center, a dance studio, a Karate Dojo, and a playground. 

In 2017, with support from the Harold Alfond Foundation, the Center was expanded to include a whole-family “Wellness Center” with adult fitness programming, a teaching kitchen with a nutritionist and chef, an indoor turf field, an indoor running track, an additional gymnasium, a child care center, community gardens, greenhouse and a clinic operated by a health care partner.

Read more about the Alfond Youth and Community Center.

Alfond Leaders Student Debt Reduction Program: The Alfond Leaders Student Debt Reduction Program is designed to help address Maine’s student debt burden and support economic growth in the state. The program focuses on STEM workers specifically.

Read more about the Alfond Leaders Student Debt Reduction Program.

FocusMaine: FocusMaine is an initiative to stimulate economic growth and job creation in Maine over the next ten years. Working with the support of many private and public sector leaders statewide, FocusMaine has identified three “signature” Maine industries poised for growth: agriculture, aquaculture, and biopharmaceutical manufacturing.  FocusMaine is also leading a cross-sector effort to grow the number of knowledge workers in our state.

Read more about FocusMaine.

In addition to the above, the Foundation has made major grants for the following:

  • Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens: To create a Children’s Garden at the Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens, and to support the expansion of the institution through construction of a conservatory, additional gardens, and other facilities.
  • Olympia Snowe Women’s Leadership Institute: To build confidence, raise the aspirations, and develop the leadership skills of young women across Maine.
  • Friends of Belgrade Lakes Village: To support capital improvements such as new brick sidewalks and pedestrian lighting, and to enhance the safety and aesthetics of the village of Belgrade Lakes.
  • City of Waterville and Friends of Quarry Road: To support the Quarry Road Recreational Area, including through the creation of new trails, the purchase of snowmaking equipment, and establishment of the Harold Alfond® Snowmaking Center.