Food Drive Kicks-off Community Week; 4/1- 4/5

By Carol McCracken  (Post # 1,325)

Donations of non-perilshable food and other items are being accepted all this week at City Hall, Room 312 for the city’s Preble Street and other City Shelters. Other donations needed include: clean clothing, backpacks and  socks.  Donations will be accepted today through Friday, April 5th.  This event is the first in a series of activities this week celebrating National Community Development Week.  More specifically, it celebrates the impact of Community Development Block Grant funds and HOME programs in Portland.

The Community Development Block Grant (“CDBG”) program provides federal funds to the City of Portland for projects that ensure access to affordable housing provide services to the city’s most vulnerable and create jobs through the expansion and retention of busineses. In the past, CDBG program has funded playgrounds at Fox Street, Stone Street, Deering Oaks, Reiche amd East End Community Schools; trees throughout the peninsula; Community Policing; numerous sidewalks to improve walkability of the City, plus landmarks such as the St. Lawrence Arts Center, Abyssinian Meeting House and the Maine Irish Heritage Center.  For more information about these programs, pls. visit www.portlandmaine.gov/planning/commdev.asp or www.hud.gov

Other activities for the week include a CDBG working group, public input session at 7 pm, State of Maine Room, City Hall 2nd floor on Wednesday, April 3rd.  On Thursday, April 18, there will be a Fair Housing Law Talk from 10:30 am - noon, 190 Lancaster Street, Portland. April is Fair Housing month. Patricia Ender of Pine Tree Legal Assistance will talk about Fair Housing law in Maine. OnFriday, April 5th there will be a facade improvement walk and tour of the Maine Irish Heritage Center.  Depart City Hall at 9 am for a walk along Congress Street and end at the Maine Irish Heritage Center (corner of State & Gray) at approimately 9:45 am.  See the use of CDBG funds in the community, incljuding facade improvements for local businesses.