ALFRED — York County Shelter Programs has begun its annual holiday fundraising drive and hopes that people throughout the county will dig deep to help their neighbors who are most in need.

“As the holidays approach, and many of us consider the gifts we will give to our families and friends, we are asking people to consider giving the gift of a donation to York County Shelter Programs,” said Clay Graybeal, YCSP’s acting executive director.

YCSP provides emergency shelter to homeless adults at its Alfred shelter and homeless families at its Sanford shelter. The agency, which was created 40 years ago, works to help people change their circumstances so that they will no longer be homeless. “We offer resources such as therapeutic services, counselling and treatment for substance abuse, job skills training and connections to other community resources,” Graybeal says. “We help people transition into permanent housing.”

Last year YCSP gave shelter to 700 people.

The agency also operates a food pantry that feeds about 3,000 people every month.

As a nonprofit, YCSP relies on grants and donations in order to operate. “We feel fortunate that we have had continual support from the people living in our communities all these years,” Graybeal said. “That support has changed lives.”

To make a donation: send a check or money order to: YCSP, 24 George Road, Alfred, ME 04002; or donate through YCSP’s website,, or its Facebook page.

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