A Few of Our Favorite Things: Giving Tuesday 2021

Island Institute
Posted 2021-11-30

This year on Giving Tuesday, in collaboration with our friends at Luke’s Lobster, we’re reigniting our series, “A Few of Our Favorite Things,” highlighting the organizations, people, and places that we cherish—both here in Maine and beyond. To kick it off, we’re featuring four Maine nonprofits we admire, whose missions are focused on inclusion, trust, respect, and eliminating barriers to education and support in a variety of ways.

Both today and throughout the year, we hope you’ll take some time to learn a bit about each of these wonderful organizations and consider supporting them in some way if you can. No matter what the contribution is, we can all play a role in fostering the important work they’re doing.

We look forward to once again sharing more about the things that inspire us in the coming weeks!


Nibezun is a Native American-led nonprofit organization that preserves and restores Wabanaki traditions. They reside on sacred Wabanaki land along the Penobscot River in Maine, where they celebrate culture as medicine, provide an inclusive space for healing, and promote sustainability for all people and future generations.

While they have recently completed fundraising to install solar panels at their facility, they also have an option to make an annual gift on their website to help support their ongoing operational needs. Donations can be made here.

Maine Needs is a volunteer-led organization that strives to help individuals and families in Maine meet their basic material needs through donated clothing, hygiene products, household items, and other necessities, focusing on domestic abuse survivors, asylum seekers, and those facing financial hardships. Founded in 2019, they value “solidarity, not charity”, emphasizing that their work is about “mutual aid and mutual respect.” Follow them on social media to stay up-to date on current donation needs and Visit here to see their specific donation needs or here to donate one of their essential kits which “allow children to create, moms to rest, and keep the unhoused warmer.”

Wabanaki REACH is an organization led by the Wabanaki people that supports the self determination of Wabanaki people through education, truth-telling, restorative justice, and restorative practices in Wabanaki and Maine communities. Through various programs and events, they seek to build a community of people who understand the long-term impact of the generational harms done to Indigenous people, and who wish to transform present day systems and to be a part of writing a different history for the next generation.

To learn more about Wabanaki REACH and support their programs, visit here.

Finally, the Maine Seacoast Mission provides compassionate services that help promote the well-being of children, families, individuals, and communities within Maine’s unbridged islands and coastal Downeast region. Since its founding in 1905, its work has been rooted in trust and respect for those they serve and a commitment to working with people’s strengths. They offer youth programs, island services, telemedicine, housing rehabilitation, food assistance, and college scholarships, and work to eliminate any barriers to participation that might exist. From transportation for after school programs and a mobile food pantry for homebound individuals, to outreach and health services for residents of Maine’s most remote coastal and outer-island communities, Maine Seacoast Mission provides vital resources, opportunity, and a sense of belonging. In addition to distributing gifts to children, families, and the elderly during the holidays, the Mission also accepts contributions through their Mission Fund to help with ongoing operating support for all of their programs. Learn more and donate here.


As always, we are appreciative of the support of our members, partners, and donors—and everyone who helps sustain the vibrancy of Maine’s island and coastal communities all year long. To learn more about the work of the Island Institute and the numerous ways you can get involved with our organization, please visit our Membership page here. To make a donation to support Maine’s islands and coast, click here.