Ten Small Businesses Receive $5,000 Pandemic Relief Grants

NORWAY, Maine – The Federal Home Loan Bank of Boston recently awarded pandemic relief grants for banks to distribute through their Jobs for New England Initiative.  The grants are for small businesses who were impacted negatively by the COVID-19 pandemic and are owned by women, minorities or veterans. Norway Savings Bank received $50,000 in grant money to provide to small businesses in Maine.

Norway Savings Bank enlisted the assistance of the Immigrant Welcome Center (IWC) and New Ventures Maine (NVME) to identify ten qualifying small businesses in Maine.  Both non-profit organizations’ missions are, in part, to assist small business development and sustainability.  Each business received a $5,000 grant to be used for any business expense related to pandemic recovery or reopening safely.

  • 4Men Barbershop, Portland
  • Aloha Maine!, Gray
  • Designs Adrift, Phippsburg
  • Fishermen’s Net, Portland
  • Jeff’s Jamaican Cuisine, Lewiston
  • Maine Motor Sales, Portland
  • Makkah Market, Portland
  • TerraFlora, Brunswick
  • Totally Kidz Childcare & Learning Center, Lewiston
  • The Whole Almond, West Bath

“We were pleased to be able to provide much-needed funds to these worthy businesses,” said Dan Walsh, President of Norway Savings Bank.  “By collaborating with our partners at the Immigrant Welcome Center and New Ventures Maine, we were able to distribute the grants quickly and efficiently.”

“In Maine, community is defined by taking care of one another,” said Reza Jalali, Executive Director of the Immigrant Welcome Center. “In partnering with Norway Savings Bank, together we are helping our new neighbors, who own small businesses and are creating jobs, survive the pandemic and continue to grow and add to the richness of our beloved state.”

“We help in the transition of many entrepreneurial ventures, often from a day-dream to launch.  Surviving these past 15 months has been a challenge for most.  The support from partners like Norway Savings Bank has been so important,” said Gilda Nardone, New Ventures Maine Executive Director.

For more information on IWC, contact Reza Jalali at reza@welcomeimmigrant.org.  Check out NVME at https://newventuresmaine.org/programs/start-a-business/.

NSB employees presenting a check

From right: Ian Pullen, Commercial Lender at NSB; Jean Dempster, NVME; Michelle Velilla, owner of Totally Kidz Childcare & Learning Center; Dan Walsh, President of NSB.

NSB employees presenting a check

From right: Lin Dehetre, NSB Branch Manager – Auburn; Jean Dempster, NVME; Karleen Andrews, NVME; Sophia Hewitt, owner of Jeff’s Jamaican Cuisine; Dan Walsh, President of NSB; Janice De Lima, CRA officer at NSB.

NSB employees presenting a check

From right: Jean Dempster, NVM; Gigi Guyton-Thompson, NVM; Renée Conlogue, Aloha Maine!; Dan Walsh, President of NSB; Peter Horr, Personal Banker at NSB’s South Portland branch.

NSB employees presenting a check

From right: Arash Hejabian, Maine Motor Sales; Fawaz Hassan, Makkah Market, LLC; Dan Walsh, President of Norway Savings Bank; Mary Starr, IWC; Adil Karim, 4Men Barbershop; Janice De Lima, CRA Officer at Norway Savings Bank; Reza Jalili, IWC; Quang Nguyen, Fisherman’s Net.

NSB employees presenting a check

From right: Janice De Lima, CRA Officer at NSB; Dan Walsh, President of NSB; Pam Bowerman, Commercial Lender at NSB; Michael Fleming, Designs Adrift; Finn Fleming (Michael and Jennifer’s son); Jennifer Wurst, Designs Adrift; Cheryl Tyler, TerraFlora; Jennifer Dobransky, NVME; Owen Vachon (Myranda’s son); Myranda McGowan, The Whole Almond; Gilda Nardone, NVME; Karleen Andrews, NVME.


About Norway Savings Bank
Founded in 1866, Norway Savings Bank is a leading mutual banking and financial services company headquartered in Norway, Maine. As of March 31, 2021, Norway Savings Bank had $1.597 billion in total assets. Norway Savings Bank has 24 branch locations and operates divisions in trust and investment services, personal banking and business banking. In 2016, Norway Savings Bank was honored as one of the Best Banks to Work For by American Banker and Best Companies Group as well as one of the Best Places to Work in Maine. In 2020, Norway was recognized with the “Best Wellness Employer – Gold Certification” for the second year in a row by Wellness Workdays. BauerFinancial has designated Norway Savings Bank the “Best of Bauer” for earning and maintaining its highest 5-star rating for 31 continuous years. For more information, visit www.norwaysavings.bank.