Northern School Notebook: May 25

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Durham students lead the way in fundraising

The team from Durham Community School raised the most money when more than 200 area students from sixth grade to college age raised over $8,000 for The Dream Factory during this year’s Spring Into Philanthropy walk.

The Durham students raised a total of $1,595 for the walk, which took place May 12 at Portland’s Back Cove. 

The event was sponsored by the Jobs for Maine Graduates program. The Dream Factory grants the wishes of critically and chronically ill children.

“I am simply at a loss for words on how to describe the tremendous heart that the (Jobs for Maine Graduates) students have for the work we do,” said Kelley Skillin-Smith, a volunteer for the Dream Factory.

“(Today), I was able to witness today kids helping kids, and kids having genuine compassion for someone that they’ve never met. Without the support of organizations like (Jobs for Maine Graduates) there is no way the Dream Factory of Maine could grant the number of dreams that we are able to,” she added. 

GHS student to be honored by The Cromwell Center

Greely High School student Charlie Saffian will be recognized as the 2017 Momentum Honoree when the Cromwell Center for Disabilities Awareness holds the 2017 Annual Dinner and Auction Thursday, June 1 to recognize two honorees who embody the center’s mission to promote safe, respectful and inclusive schools and communities.

The inaugural award honors individuals in the community who have worked with The Cromwell Center to be leaders in the community. Saffian is a sophomore at Greely and a respected student, team member and leader. As a four-sport athlete, he is a member of the swimming, soccer, unified basketball and unified baseball teams.

“As a parent of a child who also has Down syndrome, I’m grateful that Charlie is such a great role model in our schools and community,” said Rachel Williams-Clifford, The Cromwell Center board vice chairwoman who nominated Saffian. “He is relentless in his efforts to persevere and find his way. He never gives up and is a true trailblazer.”

Maine Marathon will receive the 2017 Community Partner Award for its support of Maine-based nonprofit organizations, including The Cromwell Center. Through their road running events in Portland, Maine Marathon has raised over $4 million for local charities.

The event will be held 5:30-9 p.m. at Marriott Sable Oaks in South Portland. Proceeds fund disabilities awareness programs. Tickets can be purchased by visiting

Since 2004, The Cromwell Center has impacted over 80,000 students in Maine by offering free awareness and sensitivity programs. Each ticket sold pays for 10 Maine students to receive disabilities awareness and sensitivity programs offered free of charge by The Cromwell Center to southern, central and mid-coast Maine elementary schools.

Greely students a cut above the rest 

More than 50 Greely High School students and staff are coming together May 26 for the Pantene Beautiful Lengths ponytail-cutting event. Created in partnership with the American Cancer Society, Pantene Beautiful Lengths is the first campaign that encourages individuals to grow, cut, and donate their healthy hair to make free wigs for women who have lost their hair due to cancer treatment.

Eva Matteson, a breast cancer survivor and morning talk show host from Coast 93.1, will host the event, which will begin at 1:40 p.m. in the Greely High School gym at 303 Main St., Cumberland.

The Jobs for Maine Graduates team from Durham Community School raised the most money for the Dream Factory during a recent fundraising walk. From left are Courtney Smith, Abbi Martin, Rylee Nason, Jaclyn Burke, Kelley Skillin-Smith of the Dream Factory, Jack Kelley, Sean Huntington, Cody Arsenault, Charlie Chipman and Taylor Harris.