A bunch of SUFU Chapters celebrated the holiday spirit by collecting almost 1,100 pairs of socks for their local homeless shelters and community agencies!
Socks may not seem like the first thing one would think of to donate and honestly, it was a surprise to SUFU as well. Marco Orlando, Chairperson of the SUFU Bangor Chapter, explains, "People who are homeless are on their feet a lot and to have socks that are intact, warm and dry is extremely important. From that, the Bangor Chapter decided to do a sock drive. I'm really glad that we did it for a couple of big reasons. Not only did we give back and do something that was really meaningful for us but it helped us get our name out there and when we collected socks as we went about our lives, people really saw us as individuals who happen to have disabilities, which helps break down barriers."

Krista Kennedy, Bangor's Chapter Advisor, was also incredibly motivated by the sock drive,"I proposed the idea to other SUFU groups I advise, and it just took off! It’s really been an amazing experience and it’s something that we are definitely doing again!”

The Bangor Chapter collected 429 pairs for the Bangor Area Homeless Shelter.

The Ellsworth Chapter collected 150 pairs for the Emmanus Homeless Shelter, The socks are being sold at their free clothing store, which is open Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays from 10:30 a.m. - 2:30 p.m. The store is open to any resident of Hancock County.
Bangor Chapter - Sock Drive
Ellsworth Chapter - Sock Drive
The Houlton Chapter collected 115 pairs for the Hope & Justice Project, an abuse & violence prevention center, servicing Aroostook County.

The Presque Isle Chapter collected 411 pairs for the pre-kindergarten and Kindergarten classes at Aroostook Community Action Program.

Houlton Chapter - Sock Drive
Houlton Chapter - Sock Drive
Presque Isle Chapter - Sock Drive
Tabatha Shaw, of the Presque Isle Chapter, collected over 200 pairs of socks, herself! “I love helping other people, so I knew this is something that I wanted to do. I told the pastors of my churches that I go to about the sock drive and a lot of people donated. I was actually really amazed by the number of socks we got!”

Hope & Justice Project Shelter Advocate, Krissy Beaton is not only appreciative of the socks that were donated by SUFU members but also for the new relationship that has been formed between the two organizations which Beaton sees as something that could potentially save lives! “It is a great comfort to know that when we are working with someone living with a disability, we now have new contacts in our communities with superior knowledge that can assist us in giving our clients the bestservice possible!”

The next time somebody asks you, “What do you do at SUFU?” You can tell them that you make a difference in people’s lives! 
Get to Know ...
SUFU Member, Terrance Reidy! 😊

Terrence is Very Active with SUFU:
  • Not only is Terrence, the SUFU Presque Isle Chapter’s Chairperson but…
  • He is also a member of the SUFU Board and…
  • At the 2017 SUFU Conference, he received the Paige Barton Award for being so active with SUFU!

He says, “What I love most about SUFU is knowing that my voice is going to be heard here and knowing that I am making a difference in my life, the lives of other people with disabilities and in my community.”

Terrence is looking forward to going to the Self-Advocates Becoming Empowered (S.A.B.E.) Conference next June in Atlanta:
  • As part of receiving the Paige Barton Award, Terrence will be attending his first S.A.B.E. Conference!

“I’m not sure what to expect but what I’m looking forward to most is sharing Ideas at S.A.B.E. I want to share what we are doing at SUFU and learn ideas from other self-advocates, that SUFU can use.”

Terrence is really proud of the Presque Isle Chapter’s Work at Peace Park in Presque Isle:
  • On September 12, 2017, members from the Presque Isle Chapter donated 3 picnic tables to Peace Park, a public park in Presque Isle, as part of a community service project. The group fundraised over several months to raise the money to purchase the picnic tables.

  • The Presque Isle Chapter wanted their community to enjoy going to the park, so they donated the picnic tables, so people could sit and relax.

“It was really important to us to be a part of improving Peace park. Not only did it mean a lot to us to give back, but we also got SUFU’s name out there in the community and people are taking notice! Our next project is getting a gazebo for Peace Park and community members and businesses are reaching out to us wanting to help!”
Terrence has been a volunteer for the American Red Cross for years:
“I do a lot of work with disaster relief, helping people and families get back on their feet when bad things happen because of weather, fires, or accidents. To know that I can help someone, means a lot to me.”

For fun, Terrence really enjoys running and especially, photography:
“I like photographing things that most people wouldn’t think about. For example, I wondered how a dog sees the world, so I got low to the ground and took pictures. I love experimenting with different angles and shapes. Here’s one of my favorite photos I’ve taken: 

Thank you, Terrence, for all that you do! 😊
The 2018 SUFU Ad Book is Back!
Last year, as part of the Annual SUFU Conference, we did something new called the Ad Book. Chapters sold ads to businesses which was put into the Ad Book and given away at the conference. For every ad that a Chapter sold, they earned 40% of the money paid for that ad. Chapters could then use the money to pay for Chapter fees, conference attendance, etc.

Chapters really stepped up and took ownership of their conference and as a result, the Ad Book was a huge hit!

We’re doing it again! If your Chapter is interested in selling ads to businesses to go in this year’s Ad Book, please talk to your Chapter Advisor. 

If we work together, we can make the 2018 Ad Book, the best one yet!
Take the PCP Meeting Survey
PCP meetings are "Person-Centered Planning meetings," where you are able to talk about how you want to live your life and what goals and dreams that you have.

SUFU would like to know what you like and don't like, about your PCP meetings, so we wanted to ask you a few questions in this survey.

Most of the questions, you may answer, "Yes or No."

Each question also has a box, where you can write something more, if you want to.

If you want to put your name on the survey, you can, but you don't have to.

If you have any questions, please call or email Avery at: (207) 956-1004, Ext. 4 OR To take the survey, just click the link below:
... or paste this address into your browser:

If we work together, we can help make sure that PCP’s work for everyone,
like they are supposed to! 😊
Have an Idea for Something to be in The Connector?
Contact: Avery Olmstead SUFU Communications & Development Manager (207) 956-1004 / Ext. 4
Facebook: Avery Olmstead SUFU Maine
Speaking Up For Us of Maine