Welcome to Mission at the Eastward
Creating safe places to live, enriching the lives of children and youth, and building resiliency in our communities. We BUILD lives!
Our Main Mission
MATE is comprised primarily of 3 ministries serving Western Central Maine. Follow the links below to explore:
For Mission at the Eastward, 2020 was a year of highs and lows. Everything in 2020 was affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. Because of the outpouring of love, support and generosity from all of you, MATE was strengthened through our partnership and we were able to offer housing and youth programming despite the coronavirus. Then, we asked you with our annual holiday appeal to give, to help us finish 2020 in a solid financial position and start 2021 off with resources to support the ongoing operations of MATE. You gave with extraordinary commitment. We exceeded our annual holiday appeal goal and are on solid financial footing for the first part of the year. Thank you, MATE family and friends, for helping us make it through a tough year.
As you might surmise, priorities for a nonprofit can shift during times of crisis and great change. MATE’s Board spent the past year evaluating the impact of our programs and the sustainability of our work. The outcome of our study resulted in the restructuring of our services, programs and operations in a faithful way that now supports MATE’s long term vibrance and viability.
Sadly, one beloved program that is affected is Camp at the Eastward. While we celebrate the wonderful mission, long history and much-loved ministry of camping at CATE, MATE will not be renewing our camp programming at CATE or our lease with the Presbytery of Northern New England (PNNE), which owns the land.
This decision was very hard to make and was driven primarily by a decade long retraction of financial resources, declining attendance at camp, and the difficulty finding qualified leaders and volunteer support.
At this time, our intent is to promote camping opportunities for youth at Camp Wilmot, Wilmot NH in 2021. By joining resources with them, we can help to strengthen Wilmot’s program this summer. We are planning to offer camping scholarships for youth from CATE’s communities so that youth can have a wonderful camping experience this summer, pending safety and health measures being met due to the ongoing pandemic.
Reducing our service and program at CATE also allows us to focus our time, energy and resources on MATE’s housing repair ministry, emerging programs that seek innovative solutions to homelessness and reassessing our youth enrichment programming, MATE Youth Connection (MYC).
We will take time to grieve this loss, but we will celebrate all that the CATE has meant to the entire MATE community, including the Starks community where CATE is located, and all of our campers, supporters, churches and people who have been a part of CATE through the last 60 years. Please stay tuned for information about an upcoming celebration of CATE’s ministry.
We will host an informational ZOOM meeting with our Executive Director, Thea Kornelius and Board Members, on Sunday, February 21 from 6-7 PM, where you can ask questions about CATE’s closure and learn about MATE’s plans for the future. Please check our website, missionattheeastward.org and future MATE MATTERS, our monthly E-newsletter, for future updates. To subscribe to MATE MATTERS or to reserve a spot on the Zoom call with Thea, please reach out to her at [email protected] Thank you once again for your understanding and generous support of our cause.
Grace and Peace,
Thea Kornelius and The Board of Mission at the Eastward
Armies of Volunteers
Each year 300-400 amazing, serving people come from all over from New England to Delaware and Pennsylvania. They come to serve our neighbors in West and Central.
What People Are Saying
“I spent the first two thirds of the
summer trapped in my house. Thanks
to MATE’s Housing Ministry, I am
now more self-sufficient. I am able
to leave and return to my home in
safety. There are only 4 steps to enter
and exit the mobile home I live in. I
have Parkinson’s Disease and have
very poor balance and coordination.
Because I had an injury this summer,
I was climbing down the stairs
sideways and crawling to get back up
them. I didn’t think about asking for
help. A concerned Board member
and MATE volunteer, proposed the
idea of having a ramp added on to
my trailer. Long story short, MATE’s
Housing Ministry, and some very
dedicated volunteers, installed a
ramp and I am now not only able to
safely leave and return to my home,
but I can take my walker with me,
resulting in less falls. This ministry
gave me back my independence. I
will be forever grateful. Thank you to
everyone who helped!”
Peace and Blessings,
“MATE has brought me so much closer to my church family within just a short weekend. Also within that weekend, we helped so many families with home projects that improved their living conditions dramatically. This weekend of teamwork brought smiles to everyone’s faces and I can’t wait for more trips like this!”
“To the congregation and all who participated in the MATE program in northern Maine: Thank you especially to Matt and his crew who have done such wonderful work on my house. With people like you I can live in my house. Thank you and Merry Christmas.”
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