Bath honors people, groups, projects that make a difference

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BATH — Jamie Dorr has shown herself to be a true friend of the area’s youth, particularly those who could use a friend the most.

Her concern about the number of young people taking their own lives in the Mid-Coast area led her a year ago to create the Midcoast Community Alliance, which helps troubled youths and the adults around them access the knowledge and resources to prevent such tragedies from happening.

Recognizing Dorr’s “untiring, infectious energy,” according to a city press release, Bath named her its Citizen of the Year Oct. 7 during the 19th annual Citizen Involvement Day celebration, held as part of Autumnfest.

Meanwhile, Bath Elks Lodge No. 934 earned the Al Smith Community Spirit Award, the Friends of the Zorach Fountain received the Community Project Award, and the Youth Award went to Morse High School’s Jobs for Maine’s Graduates program.

Dorr, who is president of the Friends of the Bath Youth Meetinghouse & Skatepark and a “big sister” through the Bath-Brunswick Big Brothers/Big Sisters program, is “an inspiring leader” devoted to the community’s youth and mental health awareness, according to the city.

“It’s very exciting,” Dorr said in an interview Monday, noting that she wasn’t aware at the event that she was being recognized until she started noticing family members she hadn’t seen in a while appear at the same time.

“It was a wonderful surprise,” she added. “It’s indicative of how our community has really come together to support (the MCA’s) mission of reducing and eliminating suicide, and trying to connect people with help who are hurting.”

The recognition helps spread the word about that mission, Dorr noted.

“With every award that we receive, it helps us to continue a very important conversation, helps us get the word out there,” she said, “so that people who are hurting can hopefully hear the message that there’s hope available. We’re here; we want to help.”

The city lauded the Elks Lodge for its membership’s community service, fundraising, and providing its headquarters as a meeting space.

The lodge “supports youth sports and activities, gives scholarships to area students, collects and delivers food baskets during the holidays and volunteers at the Bath Area Food Bank,” the city noted.

The Friends of the Zorach Fountain were recognized for fundraising to benefit the 2016-17 renovation of the Library Park pond around the “Spirit of the Sea” sculpture. The city praised the group’s “passion, vision and determination,” noting that the project provides “a stunning setting for the sculpture and assured the fountain’s stability for years to come.”

The Morse JMG was honored for service to the community under the leadership of JMG Specialist Maria Morris by helping the Bath Area Food Mobile and Bath Area Food Bank. The group also volunteered during seasonal cleanup days around the grounds of Bath Housing properties.

JMG’s students “excel at the community service component of their education and are praised by area nonprofits for their work ethic and professionalism,” according to the city.

Alex Lear can be reached at 781-3661 ext. 113 or alear@theforecaster.net. Follow him on Twitter: @learics.

Jamie Dorr, right, founder of the Midcoast Community Alliance and president of the Friends of the Bath Youth Meetinghouse & Skatepark, was named Bath’s Citizen of the Year Oct. 7. City Council Chairwoman Mari Eosco presented the award.

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A Maine native and Colby College graduate, Alex has been covering coastal communities since 2001, and currently handles Bath, Topsham, Cumberland, and North Yarmouth. He and his wife, Lauren, live in the Portland area, and Alex recently released his third album of original music.