A Message from Board President Stephanie Clement

Last year was Island Connections' 25th anniversary. We've accomplished much in our first quarter century thanks to the dedication of our volunteers, the talent of our staff, and the passion of our donors. The transportation needs in our community continue to grow, and Island Connections is evolving along with them.

We developed a new three-year strategic plan in 2022 that focuses on strengthening our volunteer base, bolstering our fundraising efforts, analyzing our services, developing our board and staff expertise, and updating our infrastructure and capacity to serve our Neighbors. We are excited to begin tackling these important goals and have already implemented a volunteer survey and developed the Giving Circle, a program designed to encourage sustainable funding for our organization.

I am grateful to all who have helped our programs grow through volunteer time and financial contributions. Your support has enabled Island Connections to provide critically needed transportation services for our region. There is nothing I love more than our motto of "Neighbors helping Neighbors." Together, we make our community a better place. Thank you for your support!

2022 Report from Executive Director Sharon Linscott

The demand for Island Connections' free transportation services is increasing. We provided a record 5,598 one-way rides in 2022. We continue to prioritize rides to medical appointments and for programs that address food insecurity in our region. In fact, one-third of our rides facilitate access to food for people in need. Our grocery shopping program for Neighbors, which began during Covid, has grown. We also deliver food for Meals on Wheels, the Food Access Project and the Bar Harbor Food Pantry. The overall number of food delivery routes in 2022 seems lower than 2021, but we combined two Bar Harbor Food Access Project routes into one, beginning June of 2022.

In 2022, we were able to bring back two of our fundraisers, Dine-Around Day in July and the 5th Annual Mary Parker Memorial 5k in October. We launched our 3rd Annual Match Campaign in May of 2022 to celebrate our 25th Anniversary. Through the generosity of our community, our match challenge raised over $57,000.

We added 69 new Neighbors and 30 new Volunteer Drivers in 2022. A total of 113 volunteer drivers donated over 2,300 hours of their time and drove over 63,000 miles throughout the year. Our dedicated volunteers are the driving force of Island Connections.

Island Connections' overall goal is to continue providing free transportation, delivering food to our neighbors, and being recognized in the community as an essential resource. It is through the big hearts of our core group of volunteer drivers and the generosity of our donors that we are able to do this good and much needed work. We are looking forward to another successful year!