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Update on Asylum Seekers in Sanford

You might have heard that a number of people have found their way to Sanford, seeking asylum.

Here’s the scoop on what’s happening:

Approximately 90-100 individuals arrived last week and over the weekend in Sanford from the Congo and Angola.

There is a coordinated Citywide effort to assist the families. The city of Sanford, their General Assistance office together with the Maine Immigrants’ Rights Coalition, York County Community Action and Nasson Health Care, Sanford Housing, Sanford School District, York County Shelter Programs, Nasson Community Center and Southern Maine Health Care, along with two local hotels are partnering to help the families get situated and have their basic immediate needs met, with a focus on finding longer-term solutions.

As you already know, York County Community Action is here to help anyone who is struggling and in need of support, with services that include outreach workers who connect individuals with available services. You should be extremely proud of the team of people who are providing support including staff members from Economic Outreach, Transportation, WIC and Nasson Health Care. Thank you all for your efforts!

Other details:

· Numerous people in Sanford have offered help. We are working out the best ways for people to volunteer time, provide monetary donations or donate goods. We’ll let you know as soon as we finalize the list of needs as well as organizations to donate to. All volunteers/donations must go through already-established organizations.

· If you’d like additional information, the City Council is holding an emergency meeting tonight, which will be conducted in person in the Sanford City Council Chambers and via remote video and teleconference from 5 -7. For additional info, go to

· See Carter speak on this topic in the news with WMTW’s Jeff Keithley:

· At this time, Sanford has no more capacity to house any more families - this information is being relayed to the newly arrived families and our community partners statewide.

· This is an evolving plan and complicated for all involved and ask for patience and understanding as we all work together in this unexpected situation.

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