Precious Moments Nature Preschool owner Jennifer Pallotta and her students. In November, Scarborough Buy Local donated $400 to the preschool and three other schools in town: Our School, Lil’ Folk Farm and Camp Ketcha’s Preschool. Courtesy photo Catherine Morrison

Camp Ketcha’s Executive Director Tom Doherty, Scarborough Buy Local board member Dick Boardman, Board President Dr. Tracey St. John, DC, and board member Jesse Fowler along with Camp Ketcha students. Courtesy photo Catherine Morrison

SCARBOROUGH — On Dec. 1, Scarborough Buy Local announced that the organization donated $400 to four local preschools in November.

The schools, Our School, Precious Moments Nature Preschool, Lil’ Folk Farm and Camp Ketcha’s preschool, each received a donation of $400, which OSC Web Design, cPort Credit Union, and MEND Health and Wellness contributed to, said Catherine Morrison, a Scarborough Buy Local member.

“The donations to the nursery schools, some of which were forced to temporarily close in the spring, were a way to assist another segment of our membership,” she said.

Jennifer Pallotta, owner of Precious Moments Nature Preschool, was “shocked but grateful” to Scarborough Buy Local for its outreach, she said.

“The wonderful donation we received from Scarborough Buy Local, and there were three places that donated to the preschools, will definitely be used for supplies, you know, paints and clay, and stuff I haven’t been able to keep stock,” she said.

Pallotta said that Precious Moments Nature Preschool has been following CDC guidelines and received grants earlier in the year to help with that.


“Basically the heart of the essential worker starts with childcare and without childcare, families couldn’t go to work,” she said. “When the pandemic happened and schools shutdown, a lot of childcare were without income. For myself, I was fortunate that some of my families continued to pay me, and they wanted to come back to a nice quality preschool, but I also had families that just stopped paying and weren’t coming back.”

As a nonprofit organization, Scarborough Buy Local, with over 150 members, was founded in 2009 and works to promote small, locally owned businesses, said a press release. Earlier this year, the organization also purchased 25 gift cards from member businesses impacted by COVID-19 restrictions.

The organization wants to promote buying local, Morrison said.

Dr. Tracey St. John, DC, president of the Scarborough Buy Local Board of Directors and co-owner of MEND Health & Wellness, also emphasized this point in an email from Morrison.

“Buying local maximizes your financial impact on the community by keeping dollars in the town where they most benefit your friends and neighbors,” St. John said. “It is important that unique, locally owned businesses survive and thrive so that Scarborough remains a vibrant, sustainable community.”

An online directory of members can be found at Locally owned businesses interested in joining Scarborough Buy Local may visit the website and contact the organization, Morrison said.

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