Posted March 19, 2009
Wanting to learn both about philanthropy as well as how non-profits work, Sarah Richards served on the Common Good Grant Committee during the 2007–08 year and gained firsthand experience with the grant-making process. The committee solicits grant applications from local organizations and awards $10,000 in funding provided by an anonymous donor each year. As a member of the Common Good Grant Committee, Sarah reviewed grant applications and collaborated with fellow committee members to determine which projects should receive funding. In the process she learned about community challenges in the greater Brunswick community.
Learning about the local community led to Sarah’s interest in issues related to the entire state of Maine. During the summer of 2008, as a Community Matters in Maine Summer Fellow, she worked for the Maine Center for Economic Policy. Working on a wide variety of projects, Sarah was able to apply tools learned through her economics courses to analyze and help address some of Maine’s economic advancement issues. The experience made her want to stay involved particularly in the topics of healthcare coverage and fair taxation systems.
“The process of allocating funds to local non-profits was challenging, because it required us to weigh the values of so many different and important projects.”