The Freeport Community Center (FCC) is a vibrant hub of community activities. Owned and operated by FCS, and the center is shared by several local organizations and FCS services, including the Thrift Shop, Food Pantry, Volunteer Services, Essential Services, Freeport Elders, PORT Teen Center, Freeport Conservation Trust, Casco Bay CAN, and Greater Freeport Chamber of Commerce.
Freeport Community Center: an Evolution of Growth
Freeport Community Center has grown again! 57 Depot Street, the third historic Edward B. Mallett house, is now open after being rehabilitated to join the existing Freeport Community Center. The additional space is designed to provide much needed handicapped-accessible offices, as well as storage space for food supplies and Thrift Shop furniture. Come in for a tour!
57 Depot was renovated with an eye toward serious energy savings while preserving this historic streetscape in Freeport. While 57 Depot was always part of the plan for the Freeport Community Center, it only became available for purchase after FCC was opened in 2006. Because of the recent economic downturn, FCS has seen a significant increase in requests for services, prompting the application for (and receipt of) two Federal grants to help FCS address the needs of low and middle income families: Cumberland County Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) and The Emergency Food Assistance Program (TEFAP) – Infrastructure Grant.
The Horizon Foundation also awarded a grant to FCS, recognizing this project as fulfilling their mission of supporting those concerned with improving the communities in which they live with energy efficient solutions. A couple of other generous gifts are moving the project along.
The new Connector to be built between 55 and 57 Depot will include a loading dock and expanded sorting area for the Thrift Shop, and additional storage space. FCS is pleased to be working again with Scott Simons Architects, designers of the original award-winning Freeport Community Center, and now with Peter Troast’s Energy Circle and the Building Science Corporation.
Freeport Community Center: A Place for Everyone
FCS recently completed six years of fundraising with the capital campaign having raised $2.8 million. This could not have happened without the generous support of a Town bond, Freeport Town Council, private foundations, businesses and hundreds of Freeport and Pownal citizens.
During the past year alone, over 400 meetings and events have been held at the FCC. Our Teens and Elders have a home of their own and FCS has seen its services grow within the facilities the Center provides. All of the office space has been leased by nonprofits, including Freeport Conservation Trust, Freeport Child Care Services and Casco Bay C.A.N.
In 2010 the Food Pantry provided food for over 150 families and individuals (25,000 requests in all). 536 people received Thanksgiving dinner either at FCC or in their own home. 120 families were assisted with Christmas gifts and food baskets through our Holiday Helpline.
FCS has 450 volunteers who work in the Community Center to help provide the services we offer to our citizens and others. Many organizations, businesses and schools use our space for meetings and the Town of Freeport holds many meetings there as well. Residents can shop in our Thrift Shop, stop in for coffee, use our wifi, attend concerts, classes and cultural events. Our Bradley Community Room has been used for weddings, birthday parties and funeral receptions too.
FCS thanks the citizens of Freeport and Pownal who have shown their support, vision and generosity in so many ways. We now have a Community Center that was originally designed to become: “a place for everyone”. WELCOME ONE AND ALL