Who We Are

VOLUNTEERS OF AMERICA is the charity that always steps forward to help the most vulnerable rebuild their lives. For over 115 years, we have taken on the most difficult tasks to help the most underserved. With more than 30 programs in Northern New England, we strive to end homelessness, restore hope, and build communities for children and young adults, veterans, seniors, adults living with mental illness, and adults involved in the criminal justice system.

Volunteers of America Northern New England staff are held to the following vision and guiding principles:  Guided by faith, we harness the talents of many, in the spirit of compassion and collaboration. We are  innovative agents of social change, positively impacting lives. 

Guiding Principles:

  • Faith
  • Integrity
  • Innovation
  • Collaboration
  • Passionate, engaged talent

Volunteers of America Northern New England’s Behavioral Health Services provides a safe, supportive recovery environment to individuals with persistent mental illness and co-occurring disorders in one of four group home settings. Our team of trained and caring staff members help residents learn to cope with the challenges of everyday living. We work with our clients to develop an individual rehabilitation and treatment plan that includes daily living skills, education about mental illness and how to manage symptoms, as well as steps toward community engagement. For many of these individuals, this  support is a major step toward greater independence.

We provide 24/7 staffed supported housing to individuals who would be homeless or living in institutions if not for our services. We also provide daily living support services to people with mental illness and intellectual disabilities in their home.  

Our Behavioral Health Services partners with a primary care community health agency.  This partnership integrates mental and physical health in a seamless coordination of care.  Our residents are seen for both preventative and emergent care.  Emergent care issues are handled the day they arise, reducing expensive emergency room visits and unnecessary tests.  The integration of mental and physical health results in better outcomes for targeted issues, such as obesity, smoking, diabetes and heart disease , which improves the lives of those we serve.

Our Behavioral Health Services provides services for four populations: the elderly, autistic young adults, men with criminal histories, and veterans.

The elderly:  Older people with mental illness present a unique set of circumstances for caregivers.   First generation psychotropics, the aging process and lack of good health care all lead to early aging and diseases such diabetes, heart problems and obesity.  Our staff have specialized training in all these areas.  Our nurse oversees our residents’ medical care and we partner with a primary care facility to ensure rapid response to any medical problems.   We also offer preventative care through yoga, exercise, appropriate nutrition and medication.

Veterans:  We offer supportive 24/7 transitional housing for veterans with mental illness.  Volunteers of America Northern New England is the only agency in Maine that offers residential services to men and women under one roof.  We provide employment assistance, case management and cognitive therapy to help people regain independence and reenter the community. 

Men with Criminal Histories:  Men with mental health diagnoses, co-occurring disorders and criminal histories are at high risk for reentering the penal system. Our 24/7 staffed residential program works with these individuals to maintain stability, address medication issues and support diversion from jail.  Staff are trained in both correctional, mental health and substance abuse modalities.  Our highly-trained staff provides evidence-based individual and group work to address these issues and assist the men in living  a life free from crime and addiction, and in managing symptoms of mental illness.

Young Adults with Autism:  In Maine, hundreds of young adults are aging out of children’s services.  One in four children is on the spectrum of autistic disorders.  For these young adults and their families, there are scant resources available.  Our team of Daily Living Support Services staff can provide up to 16 hours of attendant care to these people.  Our goal is community engagement and as much independence as possible for each person.. 

Our Core Values and Beliefs about Treatment

  1. Shelter first. We believe that people engage in health and behavioral health care services more fully and experience better outcomes when they can rely on safe shelter or housing.
  2. Innate health. We believe strongly that all people – regardless of their conditions and circumstances – embody the potential for peak health. We see it as our duty to help people clear away the barriers and impediments, treat the symptoms of disease, and fill the gaps in their lives, revealing their innate health.
  3. Solutions are community-based. We ascribe to the principle that when we serve and treat people in their communities -- engaging, harnessing and leveraging  assets and resources within the community -- the outcomes are always better.
  4. Recovery is possible. We know from experience that people living with mental health and/or substance use disorders can and will recover if they receive the most appropriate care and support services and are effectively engaged in their own recovery.  

Call 207-373-1140 or email us for more information.