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Sipayik Community Energy & Climate Fellow

Maine Service Fellows
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The Pleasant Point Passamaquoddy Tribe completed the Community Resilience Partnership's Community Resilience Self-Assessment and List of Community Actions and held a community workshop in August 2022 and was awarded funding this fall. Pleasant Point wants to assist their residents in making their homes warmer, safer places to live by educating residents about heat pumps and different forms of weatherization, helping identify subsidies to make them more affordable, and leading the implementation of weatherization projects

Service Activities

• The Fellow will complete a series of trainings led by the non-profit organization WindowDressers and the PPRCC. The will occur iteratively over the full timeframe of service, with most in the first 2 months.
• The Fellow will do some site visits and volunteer at other window insert building workshops to practice the skills/knowledge gained through the initial documents/videos
• The Fellow will recruit and train 2-3 people in the Sipayik community to help measure windows for 20-30 homes in the Sipayik community for custom-built window inserts (10-30 inserts per home).
• The Fellow will work with the PPRCC and other community contacts (e.g. the community LiHEAP coordinator, etc.) to recruit Pleasant Point residents who could benefit the most from window inserts (e.g., low income, old drafty homes, elderly, etc.) to sign up to have their windows measured and receive free inserts.
• homes that have been measured and homes that still need to be measured until all are measured.\
• As needed, the Fellow will work with the PPRCC and the PPRCC’s grant writer to identify funding sources and provide information/assistance for grant applications to fund free inserts and/or advance additional related PPRCC priorities
• The Fellow will work with the PPRCC and the Local Coordinator from the City of Eastport to schedule the week-long community window insert-building workshop at a time (between 10/1/23 and 12/1/23) and location (Eastport or Pleasant Point) that serves the needs and culture of both communities.
• The Fellow and Paige will work together (and iteratively seek guidance from their respective community leaders) to develop a schedule of multiple 2-4-hour volunteer shifts per day over the course of a week or more (depending on the final number of inserts to be built) to build and wrap the inserts. The Fellow and Paige will ensure the schedule follows Windowdressers’ best practices and fits with the culture and customs of both communities.
• The Fellow will recruit around 50 volunteers to help with the window insert build.\The Fellow will work with the City of Eastport Local Coordinator (Paige) to implement the community window insert building workshop, which will build an estimated total of 400-500 inserts for both communities (200-250 inserts per community).
• The Fellow will follow-up with all Sipayik workshop participants to ensure they have installed their inserts, ask them whether they are satisfied with the performance of the inserts and their participation in the workshop, ask for suggestions for future local climate and energy actions the participants would like to see in their community, and find out to what extent they would like to be involved in coordinating implementing these future actions. The Fellow will reflect on the entire window insert process and develop recommendations for future local energy and climate action with and for the PPRCC based on what s/he has learned.
• Over the course of the year, the Fellow will maintain a shared document that will be accessible by the PPRCC, which will include field notes and suggestions the Fellow thinks of throughout the processes to help inform future local energy and climate actions. The Fellow will summarize and discuss this information, including a list of recommendations, with the PPRCC.

Community Need Addressed

The Passamaquoddy Pleasant Point community (Maliseet-Passamaquoddy: Sipayik) is one of two communities of the federally recognized Passamaquoddy tribe in Washington County. Sipayik is located near the Canada–United States border in Washington County. Historically, the Passamaquoddy community has issues with inefficient homes. Community members have shared that they would like to weatherize their homes but lack the funds to do so. Even with Efficiency Maine rebates, the cost of installing a heat pump is thousands of dollars. When deciding between saving for a heat pump or purchasing heating oil for winter, many are forced to cover their immediate needs rather than investing in a long-term solution. Residents who may qualify for the Maine Housing Authority’s free heat pump program for low income may not realize it exists, may need help navigating the requirements, or may have additional home heating/weatherization needs the local subsidy can help meet. While most of the current homes were built between 1980 and 1999, these homes were not built to last or withstand Maine winters and have suffered deterioration over time. Indigenous populations in general are underserved in home energy efficiency access.

Position Outcomes

The Fellow will serve the Passamaquoddy Tribe at Pleasant Point (Sipayik) by planning and implementing a community window-insert building workshop to reduce heat loss, energy costs, and environmental impacts related to fossil fuels (including greenhouse gas emissions). This program will provide free inserts to people most in need (Pleasant Point has a high poverty rate and low median income). The Fellow will build capacity for local climate and energy action by collaborating with other volunteer programs and leaders in the Volunteer Maine, Windowdressers, and Community Resilience Partnership networks. The Fellow will work with the PPRCC grant-writer to support future local climate and energy actions prioritized by the Sipayik community.


Education award upon successful completion of service, Health coverage, Living allowance, Training

The community of Pleasant Point is interested in ensuring a Fellow's successful completion of service and accessibility to a diverse array of applicants. The community is willing to discuss opportunities for assistance such as housing costs or other utilities.

Education Benefits

Credential or Certification

Volunteer Maine and Maine Service Fellows is committed to supporting participants in continuing to develop as professionals. Throughout service, as relevant opportunities come up, Maine Service Fellows will support all members in continuing to grow through credentialing and certification. For example, all Fellow's will have the opportunity to become certified in volunteer management.

Skills you will gain

Volunteer recruitment and management, public speaking, grant writing, community engagement, and navigating federal and municipal policies and regulations.

Competencies You Will Develop

Demonstrate sensitivity and empathy, Lead group discussion, Listen to and consider others' viewpoints, Maintain open lines of communication with others, Speak clearly, in precise language and in a logical, organized and coherent manner
Creativity & Problem Solving
Able to identify and define the problem, Capable of generating possible solutions, Communicate the problem to appropriate personnel, Provide relevant expertise
Derive consensus, Develop constructive working relationships and maintain them over time, Establish a high degree of trust and credibility with others, Interact professionally and respectfully with supervisors and co-workers, Stay positive and outcome oriented, Use appropriate strategies and solutions for dealing with conflicts and differences to maintain a smooth workflow
Accepts responsibility, Anticipate the consequences of decisions, Identify and prioritize the key issues involved to facilitate the decision making process, Involve people appropriately in decisions that may impact them, Quickly respond with a back-up plan if a decision goes amiss
Carefully consider which tools or technological solutions are appropriate for a given job, Operate tools and equipment in accordance with established operating procedures, safety standards, and ethical guidelines, Seek opportunities to improve knowledge of tools and technologies that may assist in streamlining work and improving productivity
Able to prioritize various competing tasks, Create environment of contribution, Create plan of action, schedule tasks so that work is completed on time, Demonstrate the effective allocation of time and resources efficiently, Drive decision making, Effectively delegate tasks, Facilitate group planning
Be pleasant, courteous, professional and respectful when dealing with internal and external customers or clients, Evaluate customer or client satisfaction, Honor the privilege of being able to work with and for those being served, Provide personalized, prompt, and efficient service to meet the requirements, requests and needs of customers, Recognize the importance of maintaining privacy and confidentiality of those being served, Understand and anticipate the needs of others, Understand the importance of one's role in the functioning of the organization, Understand the significance of maintaining a healthful and safe environment
  • Activity Types Hands On Activities, Office Activities, Professional Activities
  • Focus Areas Aging, Community & Nonprofit Development, Disaster, Economic Security, Environment, Public Safety
  • Length of Service 12 Months
  • Education Requirements Associates Degree (AA)
  • Placement Individual Placement
  • Service Setting Community Development Organization, State Service Commission
  • Weekly Training Hours 2

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