What a beautiful community we are fortunate to live in — the Midcoast region of Maine! On July 16, I had the opportunity to see it up close and personal at Brunswick in Bloom, the garden tour fundraiser for Oasis Free Clinics. The weather did not disappoint. It was sunny and warm — a stunning day to explore the nooks and crannies and other hidden treasures of beauty that local gardeners shared in support of our cause to provide free health, dental and prescription care to our neighbors in need.

It took a small army of volunteers to make this event a huge success. The committee who organized the day (Lennie Burke, Cyndy Bush, Walter Higgins, Anita Ruff, and Bonnie Studdiford) considered so many details. They made sure that those who explored the 13 gardens in the town of Brunswick had a top-notch experience. We sold over 265 tickets, making Brunswick in Bloom a sellout. We had 21 sponsors whose names were prominently displayed, letting the community know that their 

businesses support our important cause. Check out BrunswickInBloom.org/sponsors for a list of all of them, and be sure to both patronize and thank these businesses for caring for our community. Hats off to you all to them for their participation and continued commitment to Oasis Free Clinics and our neighbors in need.

On the day of the event, I had the pleasure of greeting our guests at one of three gardens on Cumberland Street. It was so fun to see our supporters out in force. It was equally as enjoyable to meet people who were just learning of Oasis Free Clinics for the first time. I met a lovely young couple who recently relocated to Maine from the West Coast and who were thrilled to absorb more about the amazing community they now call their own. There were many other visitors from “away” who happened to be in town and saw this as a great way to get to know our area a little better. We really appreciate each one of you for stopping here and spending a day in our lovely corner of Maine. We expect that many of our local businesses benefitted from the pause they chose to make here, as well.

This community of ours has something very special at its heart: our traditions of caring, our eagerness to make sure all who come here can thrive here, our spirit of giving back, our pride in helping neighbors in need, and our creative approaches to getting locals involved with causes that simply make for a better and healthier community. Oasis Free Clinics is just one of many local non-profits who serve this purpose. We are grateful to have strong collaborative ties with several others, including those who you read about each week in the Giving Voice: The Gathering Place whose focus is on community engagement, Tedford Housing whose mission is to empower people to move from homelessness to home, and Mid Coast Hunger Prevention Program who is the largest hunger relief and prevention agency in our area. These are just a few of those who help care for our community.

The Midcoast area is unique and certainly worthy of stopping and smelling the flowers. Oasis Free Clinics anticipates that Brunswick in Bloom will be back again in 2023. We sincerely and from the bottom of our hearts say, “Thank you!” to our volunteers, gardeners, and local businesses for your support. Your efforts are what sustain this community. If you have yet to connect with us, we hope this article has piqued your interest, curiosity and desire to support the fantastic non-profits in this community. We welcome your donations, support and involvement with open arms. Together, we make a strong, growing community where everyone can blossom.

The Oasis Free Clinics is a nonprofit, no-cost primary care medical practice and dental clinic, providing exceptional, patient-centered care to uninsured members of our community. For more information, call (207) 721-9277 or visit OasisFreeClinics.org.

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