Newcomers to Bangor from different cultures and countries can expect a smoother transition into the community as the result of Thursday night’s city council vote to establish a local multicultural center.
Bangor Mayor Joseph Baldacci said the city will invest $75,000 in the center this year with the hope of delivering an array of services for new arrivals within the next six months.
“Bangor Housing Authority is interested in getting involved and in working on this, so it’s going to have many different facets, with having a coalition in the business community with places like General Electric and the University of Maine,” Baldacci said. “Then it’s going to help bring all those types of resources together just to help people and to really make sure that the welcome sign is hoisted high in Bangor. We’re very proud of our city and we want more people to come here.”
Baldacci said he expects some additional support from the non-profit and private sectors.
“It’s a large commitment of money,” he said. “We expect the private business community and the private nonprofits to come up with at least another $50,000-$90,000, or in that range, to complement what we’ve done. The reason that it’s an important step forward is because we need to change with the times. We need to broaden our outlook as a people and as a state.”
Baldacci and council member Sean Faircloth worked together to establish the multicultural center, which will be located on the grounds of the University of Maine at Augusta’s Bangor campus.
This story was originally published on July 28, 2017 at 4:07 p.m. ET.