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Bar Harbor Bank & Trust recently presented donations totaling more than $9,000 to local non-profits from its employee-driven charitable giving program, Casual for a Cause. The program pools employee contributions collected each quarter and distributes them to non-profits selected by and voted on by the employees. The recipients of the Q4 2019 contributions are: Big Brothers Big Sisters of Bath/Brunswick; Emmaus Homeless Shelter; Upper Valley Habitat for Humanity; and Girls on the Run Vermont.

“These nonprofit organizations play a very important role in supporting those in need in our communities,” said Jack Frost, VP Director of Community Giving at Bar Harbor Bank & Trust. “Our employees are proud to support their efforts through our Casual for a Cause program.”

Big Brothers Big Sisters of Bath/Brunswick matches children in Brunswick, Harpswell, and Sagadahoc counties in Maine with adult and teen mentors who provide friendship, support, and guidance during the kids’ critical childhood and adolescent years. The organization serves nearly 300 children annually with more than 17,000 hours of volunteer service. Learn more about them at www.bbbsbathbrunswick.org.

“Big Brothers Big Sisters of Bath/Brunswick is incredibly appreciative of this important gift from Bar Harbor Bank & Trust,” said Lindsay MacDonald, Executive Director of BBBS. “With this donation, Bar Harbor Bank & Trust shows their support of one-to-one mentoring programs for youth that are facing adversity. Our professionally supported Big and Little relationships are proven to help the youth of our communities have higher aspirations, improved educational success, and better relationships so that they achieve their full potential in life.”

Emmaus Homeless Shelter provides a safe and comfortable environment for those in need of temporary shelter who are willing to work towards ending their homelessness. The program commits to helping the poor by offering a wide range of services referrals to anyone in need. Learn more about them at www.emmaushomelessshelter.org.

“The Emmaus Homeless Shelter is honored to be selected by Bar Harbor Bank & Trust as a recipient of the Casual for a Cause program,” said Stacey Herrick, Director of Emmaus Homeless Shelter. “This generous donation will be used towards general operating costs which will help support all of our many programs.”

Upper Valley Habitat for Humanity brings people together to build homes, communities and hope. They partner with families to help them build a place they can call their own to achieve the strength, stability and independence for building a better life. Learn more about them at www.uvhabitat.org.

“This generous donation furthers our mission to provide safe, healthy and affordable homes for neighbors in our community who otherwise would not be able to purchase a home,” said Eva Loomis, Executive Director of Upper Valley Habitat for Humanity. “Specifically, this donation supports our project to build a high-performance duplex in Lebanon for two families. We are grateful for Bar Harbor Bank and Trust’s commitment to the communities they serve and for their strong and continued support of Upper Valley Habitat programs and events.”

Girls on the Run Vermont is an inclusive physical activity-based, positive youth development program that inspires girls in 3rd through 8th grade to be joyful, healthy, and confident. The ten-week program led by trained volunteer coaches teaches critical life skills, encourages personal development, and fosters team building and community service. Girls on the Run Vermont serves girls at 45 sites in Southern Vermont. Learn more about them at www.gotrvt.org.

“What a tremendous gift it is to have community partners like BHBT,” said Amanda Hoffman, Development Manager for Girls on the Run Vermont. “With the support of Bar Harbor Bank and Trust, we are able to inspire girls to be joyful, healthy and confident using curriculum based education that incorporates running.”

Bank employees dress casually on Fridays in exchange for a contribution to a pool of funds collected during each quarter. The employees then select and vote on three nonprofits to receive their contributions. Gifts contributed by Bank employees in 2019 totaled just over $40,000.