How can we leverage the best that education can offer to meet, honor, and serve the spirits, hopes, and dreams of young people here in Washington County?” That was the question that launched 24 community members into a six-month participatory research process in 1999, leading to the design and establishment of the Cobscook Community Learning Center (CCLC).
On a recent saunter through one of our wonderfully lush Downeast forests, my thoughts were interrupted by a fallen tree. Cushioned by a bed of sphagnum moss and sprigs of purpling wintergreen leaves upon its fall, this tree’s roots now stood over ten feet high, towering over the trunk of this former giant. This bold reminder of roots offered an important reflection.
Cobscook students visited Downeast Salmon Federation’s (DSF) East Machias Aquatic Research Center on the first school day in October to help with Atlantic salmon restoration efforts--one of the many meaningful field trips to meet with scientists and assist with conservation work that makes the Cobscook program so impactful.
The upcoming 3,345 square-foot facility increases total CCLC building space to 20,000 square-feet, and features a large partitionable conference room, a spacious classroom, lobby and welcome center, office space, ample storage spaces, and two handicapped accessible bathrooms.
One of the vital channels nourishing the CCLC’s roots is its funders. The Quimby Family Foundation, which supports Maine-based nonprofits that are fostering stronger relationships between people and nature for the benefit of human wholeness, has been a generous supporter of the CCLC since 2001.