Delilah, a Parson Russell Terrier mix, has been with the Bangor Humane Society for nearly three years and is always looking for the right home for her unique needs. (Photo courtesy of Bangor Humane Society)

PORTLAND & ELLSWORTH — Furry companions have become a lifeline for many people during the pandemic, as an estimated 23 million American households have adopted a pet. At the same time, however, housing issues and loss of income have made life more stressful for some pet owners.

Maine Community Foundation Animal Welfare Fund grants have helped fill service gaps with support for veterinary services, vaccination clinics, food assistance, neutering and neutering and home care programs. MaineCF has awarded more than $1 million in grants since the program began in 2008.

Proposals for this year’s grants are now being accepted until June 1. A virtual grant program information session will be held from noon to 1 p.m. on Thursday, April 28. To register for the information session and learn more about the program, visit their website or contact Program Officer John Ochira at 1-877-700-6800 or [email protected]

The Animal Welfare Fund awarded $282,500 in grants to 21 nonprofits in 2021, including:

Franklin County Animal Shelterfor the shelter’s spay/neuter voucher program: $10,000

Humane Societyto support increased capacity for the [email protected] program and maintain statewide sterilization efforts: $20,000

Another chance to save animalsto support 100 spayed/neutered cats, over 25 low-income families assisted with veterinary bills and flea mitigation: $10,000

An anonymous donor established the fund in 2007. It is further supported by the Doree Taylor Charitable Foundation, Bank of America, NA Trustee, and the George F. Lyman and Ernestine Lyman Trust.

The Maine Community Foundation works with donors and other partners to provide sound investments, personalized service, local expertise, and strategic giving to improve the quality of life for all Maine residents.