Adam Lee, right, of Lee Auto Malls hands the keys of a new, all-electric 2023 Toyota bZ4X to Jamie Dorr, executive director of the Midcoast Youth Center. Courtesy of Lee Auto Malls

Midcoast Youth Center in Bath has a new, all-electric vehicle to support its mission to help at-risk youth, courtesy of Lee Auto Malls.

Adam Lee, Lee Auto Malls chairperson, presented Maine Youth Center’s Executive Director Jamie Dorr with the keys to a new 2023 Toyota bZ4X, Toyota’s first all-electric SUV, at Lee Toyota of Topsham last month. This is the first in a series of no-cost leases the dealership is gifting to Maine nonprofits this year, in partnership with Efficiency Maine.

Midcoast Youth Center offers a number of free programs for youth aged 10-24. Services range from operating an after-school teen center and providing meals to offering workforce development programs and initiatives to combat youth homelessness. The youth center served more than 650 young people in 2023.

“Last year, we took teenagers and young adults to over 135 different medical, mental health and dental appointments,” Dorr said in a prepared release. “Now we’ll be able to make not only a healthy impact on our community but a healthier impact on our environment.”

Lee said the donation will help deserving nonprofits while promoting the adoption of electric vehicles.

According to the U.S. Department of Energy, Maine ended 2022 with 4,990 electric vehicles out of the more than 352,000 private automobiles registered in the state.

“The more people see and experience these vehicles, the more they will want them,” Lee said. “This is a chance to get electric vehicles into the community, while at the same time helping those who are making a real difference in the lives of Maine people.”

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