Capital Area New Mainers Project & WindowDressers

WindowDressers partnered with the Capital Area New Mainers Project (CANMP) on the first Hallowell/Manchester Community Build. Hilary Neckles, co-Local Coordinator of the Build and CANMP volunteer wrote this piece about the partnership:

WindowDressers was delighted to partner with the Capital Area New Mainers Project (CANMP)
on the first Hallowell/Manchester Community Build. CANMP is a cross-cultural organization
that welcomes refugees and works to build a thriving, integrated community in central Maine.
From November 3-8, 2023, CANMP hosted the Hallowell/Manchester build at its Hallowell
Multicultural Center.

As is fitting for two organizations that strongly value personal relationships, the
WindowDressers-CANMP partnership was borne of personal connections. Hilary Neckles is the
co-Local Coordinator of the Hallowell/Manchester Community Build and is also a CANMP
volunteer, so when she was scoping build locations, she was aware of CANMP’s newly acquired
property in Hallowell as well as the challenges refugee families face. CANMP Executive
Director Chris Myers Asch agreed immediately that a WindowDressers-CANMP partnership
would be mutually beneficial.

One way that CANMP assists New Mainers is by helping them find affordable, secure housing in
the capital area. Through its Better Housing Program, CANMP negotiates with local landlords
and serves as co-signers on rental agreements for properties that they sublease to immigrant
families. A model WindowDressers insert was displayed to families in the Better Housing
Program, ultimately resulting in eight immigrant households in Hallowell and Augusta receiving
free inserts through the WindowDressers special rate program.

Ali Al-Gburi and his pet parakeet in front of a pair of WindowDressers inserts that were constructed at the Hallowell/Manchester Community Build, November 2023.

Hussein Al-Gburi and his family live in an Augusta home managed by CANMP that now has
new inserts. Hilary and Osama Oudeh, CANMP’s Refugee Support Coordinator, visited the Al-
Gburi family on a recent snowy winter day. “The room is much warmer”, agreed Hussein and his
son, Ali. As word of the opportunity to increase indoor comfort and reduce heating expenses has
spread throughout the CANMP community, additional immigrants in central Maine have
requested inserts. WindowDressers and CANMP look forward to continuing their partnership
and building more shared community connections in 2024.