SULLIVAN — Fundraising efforts for the new Charles M. Sumner Learning Campus got a $25,000 boost from Maine Savings Federal Credit Union.
“We feel honored and blessed to have received the contributions from Maine Savings,” Regional School Unit 24 (RSU 24) Superintendent Michael Eastman told The American. “We are hopeful that we can continue to raise the important funds necessary to provide our students with all that goes with a brand-new facility. Our students are deserving of this beautiful facility and the necessary furnishings and equipment needed to open its doors.”
While the $44 million combined middle and high school, which is currently under construction behind Sumner Memorial High School, is funded largely by the state, certain guidelines limit what the state will pay for.
As a result, the district’s Building Committee made a list of additional desired projects for the new school that will require outside funding.
Projects include a gym concession kitchen, sprint track, digital signage, field sprinkler system, dugouts, batting cage, outdoor sound system and other technologies and amenities.
Friends of Sumner’s Future was then formed by a group of volunteers with the goal of raising $1 million through private donations for the extra expenses.
“We are tremendously appreciative and hope other large businesses and organizations will also see the value in investing in this project and follow the lead of Maine Savings,” said Megan Moshier, chairwoman of the fundraising campaign, in a press release.
So, what will the $25,000 go toward?
“We are working with our architects to establish the priority order of the items that the Friends of Sumner’s Future committee has committed to providing,” Eastman said.
“The immediate items, based on the construction timeline and the project logistics, include the gym concession stand, the batting cage in the gymnasium and needed furniture, fixtures and equipment that will not be covered by state funding.”
Eastman reported that Friends of Sumner’s Future has currently raised over $57,000.
More information on the project is available on the RSU 24 website, which includes a list of donors who have contributed since 2019.
Businesses that have donated include Sorrento Dental Associates, the Winter Harbor Lobster Co-op and Bar Harbor Savings and Loan.
“Education is the lifeblood of our communities,” said John Reed, chief executive officer of Maine Savings FCU. “We are so pleased to be in a position to support such a worthy and critical endeavor for the entire Downeast community.”
Eastman noted that Reed reached out “early on in the fundraising efforts” and their ongoing conversations resulted in the generous donation.