Skip to main content
media hit 1.jpg

Good Deeds Go Unpunished – Maine Group Hailed, In Fact

Aligning finance with people and planet

ELLSWORTH, Maine – The Maine Community Foundation is one of the nation’s best at finding ways to build community wealth using new approaches, according to a report released today.

The report by the Maryland-based Democracy Collaborative names the Ellsworth-based foundation one of the Innovative 30. 

The report’s co-author, Marjorie Kelly, says the Maine Community Foundation is a leader in what’s called impact investing. 

“And that means not just giving grants, but investing out of their own assets and encouraging their donors to invest out of their assets to put money to work to help communities,” Kelly says. “This is really the holy grail for a lot of people.”

Kelly points out a 2008 loan of $1 million to the Maine Farmland Trust to preserve and protect farmland was a successful impact investment. 

That led the Maine Community Foundation to the creation of two more similar funds, and by September more than $2.3 million dollars been mobilized for the organization.

“The board of Maine Community Foundation said, ‘Well, let’s expand our impact investing,’” she relates. “’Let’s do more.’ 

“So they set up two pools, two investment portfolios. One is called Farm, Fisheries and Food – they want to support local entrepreneurs. And there’s also Downtown and Business Development.”

Kelly adds her report reveals that the work of the Innovative 30 anchor foundations can go a long way toward easing what it calls the nation’s staggering wealth inequalities.

“There’s a lot of groups and communities thinking, ‘How can we begin to reinvent our economies to include the excluded and to sustain ecology and resources for the future?’” Kelly says. “And we find that community foundations are key players in this often, and that’s what led us to do this research.”

Publication date: 2014-11-13
Parent publication: Public News Service
Publication URL: Good Deeds Go Unpunished – Maine Group Hailed, In Fact

More related work

Default Image

This must be the year of climate action—we've wasted so many

The climate issue has grown too large and devastating to ignore. We need the demand for action raised to the highest decibel our civil society can generate.

read more
Default Image

The case for investing in employee ownership

For many years now, conventional solutions to income and wealth inequality—minimum wage, unions, progressive taxation, or guaranteed income—have failed to gain enough momentum to reverse the trend of greater and greater accumulation among the already well-off. What if we added a new approach

read more
January 8, 2021
Default Image

After the insurrection: Defeating Trumpism, rebuilding America

Our message about how we must respond to the 2017 Charlottesville tragedy is even more relevant after the attack on the US Capitol by Donald Trump supporters.

read more