STRIVE News & Updates
November 1st, 2021
Are you, or someone you know in the market for a new job? We're hiring! We have full time, part time, and per diem opportunities available (including weekdays, evenings, and weekends)! We are also offering a $500 sign on bonus plus an additional $250 bonus for those that are already DSP or MHRT certified! Click Here to browse our open positions!

If you have questions about our current openings, contact Betsy Morrison at or at 207-879-0847 x207.

Here's what's happening in our programs!
STRIVE U is settling in to the fall. We’re mid-way through the semester at SMCC and for STRIVE U Learning Group. The students have been learning about personal boundaries, communication skills, apartment safety, facts vs. opinions, and needs vs. wants and personal health and wellness as well as getting oriented to the SMCC campus.
On campus, we are starting to be able to practice more navigation on the bus and around the community, which is a nice shift and helpful to get to know different parts of the city.
The holidays are coming right up and we are getting ready to usher them in on campus! We started with some pumpkin decorating and hope to keep the fun coming all season.

Don't forget- the STRIVE U Admission season is here! Applications are now available. We will be hosting a virtual information session Wednesday, November 17th from 8-9:30am. Contact Katie Collins at for your link to join!
STRIVE U is a comprehensive two-year residential, post-secondary educational opportunity for students with intellectual and developmental disabilities. To learn more about the program, schedule a virtual tour, or get an application, please contact Katie Collins, Director of Programs, at or call (207) 899-0035.
STRIVE WorldWIDE Director, Anne Ryan, had a chance to talk about STRIVE WorldWIDE with Steve Woods, on his radio show, A Healthy Conversation with Steve Woods. The show aired Sunday, October 24 on Newsradio WGAN (AM 560, FM 98.5), but if you missed it, you can listen here
Our October classes are underway, but registration is now open for our December classes which run from 12/6/2021 to 1/9/2022:
Money Management, seminars Tuesdays & Thursdays from 10:30-11:30 AM EST
Employment Skills, seminars Tuesdays & Thursdays from 7-8 PM EST
STRIVE WorldWIDE is STRIVE's online program that teaching independent living skills. For more information about STRIVE WorldWIDE, contact Dr. Anne Ryan at or at
With Maine’s eligibility of special education services extending to age 22, the TOPS curriculum is enhancing their pre-vocational activities and experiences to meet the needs of our students. TOPS students will continue to explore job opportunities and work on interview skills, but will also get the opportunity to further enhance their work-readiness skills, volunteer in the community and interview community members about their jobs as our year continues. 

Do you know of any volunteer sites or community members to interview? Send them our way!
Interested in TOPS? TOPS (Transition Outcomes Program for Students) provides transition programming for high school students from area school districts who are typically in their 13th & 14th school year. For more information, please contact Betsy Morrison, or by phone at 207-879-0847.
STRIVE Bayside
It's been a busy month at Bayside. We welcomed a new participant, Mary and everyone has helped her settle in. Mary has jumped right into budgeting, navigating, cooking, and cleaning with her peers.

Participants kicked off the fall season by apple picking at Orchard Hill Farm and then worked on kitchen skills by using the apples to bake apple bread, apple muffins, and a delicious apple crisp. Navigation took a spooky turn when we dared to venture down to Eastern cemetery and the haunted McClellan House where a great historical captain is said to still wander the halls. Participants helped plan a Halloween party and cooked creepy but yummy treats like mummy pizzas and mini witches hat snacks. Check out these costumes! 
STRIVE Bayside is a unique community supports program that is dedicated to exploring and increasing independence. Some of the goals we work on are grocery shopping, budgeting, cleaning, navigating the community, cooking and social skills. We run five days a week, Monday through Friday and have two daily sessions, 9:00 am - 1:00 pm and 1:00 pm - 5:00 pm. We operate out of an apartment in down town Portland to simulate actual apartment living. If you would like more information about our program, or to schedule a tour please contact Kim O'Connor at
Although Next STEP is currently on a hiatus due to the impact of COVID-19, please contact Betsy Morrison with questions or for more information about the program. Betsy can be reached at or 207-879-0847. 
This month we started a new ceramics group at STRIVE Studios. We learned how to make some amazing sculptures like pots, bowls, and cups. We had a great time learning something new. We also have been continuing to go to STRIVE Studios each week for art groups, sewing groups, and dance! It’s been so great having that space where we can explore our creative side! With winter coming we have been getting out as much as possible and have been going on lots of walks. We actually had a tour guide from Falmouth Land and Trust bring us on a hike! It was a beautiful hike looking at all the different colors of leaves. Back here at STRIVE, we have been continuing our cooking groups. It’s been great learning how to save money and create great recipes with the ingredients we have in our cabinets and fridge!

On the Virtual side of things we have been continuing to learn how to take great photos in our photography group and learning about how things are made. We are still learning how to navigate the community virtually by going on virtual walks. We have a fun science group where we learn about chemicals and how they work. But the best part of our week is being able to zoom in with the on-site group and participate in dance! 
For more information on PSL Services/STRIVE's Community Support Day Programs, Active & Waves, please contact Emily at
Wednesday Night Educational Series
We had a great time learning important ways to stay safe in our communities, homes, and online during our October Wednesday Night Ed classes. Thank you to everyone who attended!

We are also looking forward to starting a new topic in November! This month we will be be talking about gratitude and giving back. The cost for this full series is $20. Hope to see you in November!
The Wednesday Night Educational Series is held every Wednesday at STRIVE (but are currently virtual) for participants 15-24 years old. Series are between 4 and 8 weeks and topics vary from month to month! The price per series is $20-$30, depending on the series' length. Contact Alex at at  for your link to join class.
We look forward to seeing you during school vacations!
Camp STRIVE is a day-camp experience for campers between the ages of 11-24. Camp STRIVE is held every school vacation (February, April, and the day before Thanksgiving) as well as for the full summer. For more information about Camp STRIVE, contact Alex Woodhouse at
After School
Although STRIVE's After School program is currently on a hiatus due to the impact of COVID-19, please contact Betsy Morrison with questions or for more information about the program. Betsy can be reached at or 207-879-0847. 
We have some fun activities planned in our virtual Tweens program for the month of November! Check out our schedule below! We are also looking to grow our program! Do you, or someone you know, want to join? Email Alex at!
Tweens is a safe and fun environment to build new friendships and learn new skills for folks 11-14 years old. Structured in our Teen Center, we run every Friday from 3:30-5:30pm. We have a scheduled activity each week, with free time built in to maximize socialization. For more information about STRIVE Tweens, contact Alex at
STRIVE Night continues to meet each Friday night on Zoom. We always have so much fun together! This month, we are also going to continue hosting a monthly theme night! Friday, November 19th will be our Fall Festival! We plan to do Thanksgiving and general fall themed activities and games. Hope to see you there! Just a reminder- there will be no STRIVE Night Friday, November 26th as STRIVE is closed for the Thanksgiving holiday.
Friday Nights at  STRIVE, fondly referred to as "STRIVE  Night," is a relaxed but fun evening of socialization for 15-24 year olds. New members are always welcome, and your first night is free!  STRIVE Night is every Friday from  6-9pm, with at least one special "theme" night happening each month.  For more information, contact Alex at
STRIVE 25 is always so much fun! We love being able to get together over zoom and we're always looking to welcome new members! Because of the holidays in November, we will only be meeting once this month. We hope you'll join us for good conversation, karaoke, and a few rounds of BINGO on Thursday, November 18th!
STRIVE 25 is a social event for folks 25 and older, and typically happens here at STRIVE the first Thursday of each month (currently running bi-weekly online during COVID-19). For more information on STRIVE 25, contact Whitney at or Alex at!
The STRIVECast had a great month of October with many amazing guests! We interviewed Mary Kate Kwasnik - Program Manager with Girls on the Run Maine, Anna Marie Klein-Christie - Director of International Development at Safe Passage, Lindsay Knapp - Founder of Forgotten Orchard, and Lori McCartney from Two Fat Cats Bakery! It was so cool to learn about the work they all do. Our STRIVECast hosts also started some new segments this month - be sure to check them out! Do you have guest ideas for upcoming shows? Let us know!
The STRIVECast is a podcast brought to you by the team at PSL Services/STRIVE in South Portland, Maine — bringing you engaging, hilarious, and thoughtful conversation through one interview week by week. Co-Hosted by two young men with Down Syndrome, the STRIVECast aims to change the voices we typically hear on the radio and through podcasts, as well as to provide meaningful dialogues with all sorts of public figures in our world. We are very proud to be both hosted, produced AND edited by people with disabilities! Like what you hear? Shoot us an email at!
Thank you to our October Donors!
Susan Bouton
Robert Sellin and Natalie West
Richard and Catherine Sholtanis
Kurt and Kelly Stokes
Sally Wedd and Matthew Anson
Susan Ketch
Donald Perreault- In Honor of Sean Perrault
Wendy Russell
Brian and Julie Fournier
Edythe L Harnden- In Honor of Carter Harnden
Faith Comstock - In Honor of Eben Raszmann
Cloutier, Conley and Duffett, PA
Mary Jane and Terrance Sheehan- In Memory of Alice Pietras
John and Carol Ann Cagle
Barry Dunlap- In Honor of Caleb Dunlap
Mark and Anna Cloutier
Charles and Julianna Myers
Anne Owens
Kenneth and Elizabeth Guiseley- In Honor of Jackie Guiseley
E.C. and Catherine Sanders
John and Donna Dwyer
Thomas McKeon
Fredric and Doreen Thompson
Ellen Decotiis
Kim Cadwell and John Lambert Jr
Jackie Markey- In Honor of Kathleen Shevenell
Linda Falkenberg
Daniel Reardon and Bernadette Woodcock
Mary Beth and Keith Malone
David Hilleary
Patricia Kurowski
Valerie Healey
Heather McGeough
Scott and Pam Chamberlin
Stephane and Susan O'Connor
Debbie Dembski
Linda Lamberson- In Honor of Alec MacMath
Richard and Helen Corriveau – In Memory of William “Bill” Hughes
Lisa Gorman
Stephanie Cooper Scheer and William Scherr
Laurie Cavanaugh
Peter Haynes
Scott and Mary Gile- In Memory of William “Bill” Hughes
Ronald and Gaye Blumenthal
Jeffrey and Kristina Scribner- In Honor of Cameron Scribner
Lillian Haversat
Debra and Roger Caron
Tim Janis Ensemble
Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery Assoc.
Debra McPhail
William and Julie Mariski
Judith and Thomas Watson
Kathleen and Michael Bouchard
Robert Doughty Sr
Susan Joyce
Philip and Barbara Brown
Kristopher and Elizabeth Anderson
Erin and Michael Soucy
Elise Klemt
Deborah Ward
Mark and Kathleen Hamblen
Thomas and Heather Chandel
Charles and Julianna Myers
Sam and Bette Novick
Peter Greene- In Honor of Bennett Agnew
Kayla Mirabella
Martha Ann Savard
Matthew Campbell
Marc Landry
Richard Whiting- In Honor of Cullen Whiting
People's Choice Credit Union
Allyn Caruso

And to our very generous auction supporters and donors!
Thank you for your generous support of STRIVE!
With your support, we are able to continue our work each and every day.
Happy Birthday to you!
Happy Birthday to our STRIVE members with a birthday in November!

Dylan Aitken
Matthew Libby
George Kampstra
Amanda Thompson 
Joseph Sprage 
Ian Taylor
Dylan Roy 
Elliot Voltz
Hunter Frechette
Hannah Foster
Ben St. Lawrence 

Member Spotlight

Meet Faith! Faith is a first-year student in our TOPS program. Her sending school is Deering High School. She loves to cook and has enjoyed cooking with TOPS. Her favorite thing to cook is cupcakes! She also has really enjoyed exploring the community when she is here at TOPS. We are so pleased to have her here at TOPS and appreciate her positive approach to each day!
Staff Spotlight
Meet Taylor! Taylor is interning with us at STRIVE this semester! Taylor is a Dental Hygiene student at the University of New England and is minoring in special Education. During Taylor's time at STRIVE, Taylor has spent time with our community supports program. Since Taylor has a background in dental hygiene, she's facilitated many oral hygiene groups within the program! Taylor also participates in STRIVE 25 and STRIVE Night. When asked about her time at STRIVE, Taylor says "I have loved every part about interning for STRIVE so far! One of my favorite parts is being able to go in person and travel with clients to different locations getting involved in the community. Each client has unique goals they are working towards, and I love having the chance to contribute to each clients' success. Being able to go to STRIVE and teach clients about something that I am passionate about (dental hygiene and oral health) has been amazing! During STRIVE 25 and STRIVE night I love the check in questions because we all get to learn a little bit more about each other." We're so happy to have you with us, Taylor!
General Announcements
Share the Love with Patriot Subaru and STRIVE!

STRIVE has been selected as one of the beneficiaries of Patriot Subaru's Share The Love campaign! Starting November 18th, $300 from every new car sold at Patriot Subaru (and $3 from every routine service) can support STRIVE through Patriot Subaru's Share The Love campaign! Looking for a new car? Visit Patriot at 769 Portland Road in Saco, Maine!
Community Members Wanted!

Did you know that STRIVE hosts a monthly, free, networking group for those in our local community? The STRIVE Business to Business Networking Group is just one way that we try to be a mutually beneficial partner, with the hope of expanding the networks of our partners and local businesses. 

We are looking to grow! The group meets at noon on the last Wednesday of each month (right now we are meeting virtually). Are you or someone you know interested in joining? Contact Pete ( or Whitney ( for more information about the group and your link to join!
Don't forget, STRIVE has a new store! We've launched an online store to purchase all your STRIVE swag needs! Take a look at all the shop has to offer HERE! There are so many items to choose from AND you can customize any item by choosing the color and STRIVE logo that you want. Happy shopping!