We are proud of our Maine roots and part of being ‘Mainers’ comes a dedication to helping our community. As a company we sponsor multiple local organizations throughout the year, including the Ronald McDonald House Charities of Maine. Additionally we encourage our employees to donate and volunteer their time to causes important to them through our employee gift matching program, myPDAGives.
Our Director of Market Development and TPA Services, Lynn Abood, is a dedicated volunteer with the Center for Grieving Children. The organization’s mission is to provide support that encourages the safe expression of grief and fosters each individual’s resilience and emotional well-being. The Center has been operational for 30 years and has provided bereavement support for more than 66,000 children, teens and their families.
“The Center provides an in-depth training program to all volunteers and then requires a commitment to one night a week for a year – for me that night is Wednesday, and I was fortunate that there was an opening soon after my training in 2008. Needless to say, the one year commitment has long since passed and every Wednesday night feels like a gift. I have facilitated children in the Center’s ‘Volcano Room’, worked with the ‘Littles’ for several years, facilitated a ‘Tween’ group and …well…pretty much done whatever I could over these past eight years.
The Center is truly a magical place where we, as volunteers, meet each participant where they are. What we hear from families is that the Center alters children’s paths for the better, helping them to deal with what seem to be hopeless circumstances in their lives associated with the death or illness of a loved one.
Age appropriate activities are designed by the volunteer facilitators to be fun and interactive and provide a forum for kids to express their feelings and an environment where it’s ok to talk about how you feel. There is a special bond between the children in each group (and their facilitators), and it’s truly amazing how open kids are with one another about the losses in their lives. As volunteers, our hope and belief is that the work we do at the Center provides a good foundation for safe expression and the belief that a child who has lost a loved one should never feel alone in their grief."