AUGUSTA, Maine —This spring, a network of Maine inns, hotels and resorts raised funds for locals seeking permanent shelter all year round.
The annual tourism incentive called Hospitality for Habitat, administered by HospitalityMaine, raised more than $20,000 for Maine’s Habitat for Humanity chapters.
Inns from Wells to Bar Harbor offered reduced rates from April to May in lieu of guest donations to the global ministry dedicated to eliminating poverty housing.
“This has been a long partnership that benefits all our affiliates in the state,” said Tia Anderson, executive director of Midcoast Habitat for Humanity. “Most of our local economies run on hospitality, so being able to tie the industry, and people from away, to our local communities benefits the people that actually live here.”
Since 2004, Maine’s non-profit hospitality trade group has raised approximately $250,000 for the cause, which is spilt between Maine’s eight Habitat chapters.
“We feel strongly that some of these funds most probably were used to help provide a first home for workers in the hospitality industry and we remain committed to the program moving forward,” said HospitalityMaine’s government affairs officer Greg Dugal. “Without the generosity of innkeepers and their guests, it would not be possible.”
Indeed, a new Habitat for Humanity subdivision featuring one and two bedroom units breaks ground in Rockland later this year. The dwelling is geared for those working at nearby resorts and inns.
“There is a need for elderly housing, veteran housing and workforce housing,” said Anderson. “This could very well be housing for people in the hospitality industry.”