DEAR SUN SPOTS: A co-worker told me about a Facebook group where you can ask for assistance and get questions answered regarding COVID-19. Can anyone join and how do I do it?

— No name, Poland

ANSWER: The group is Maine Coronavirus Community Assistance and it already has over 20,000 members. You can go on Facebook and click on the “Join” tab. The group has moderators and rules, such as keeping comments respectful and on topic. It’s an online place where people can share information and help one another.

An emergency medical technician, Cass Clemmer, of Orono is the founder of the site. Because it has been so busy and popular, she has other volunteers helping her. The purpose of this group is to connect Mainers with assistance requests to those who can provide help. According to the “About” statement on the page, the philosophy is to “trust people — this means that you do not have to qualify your assistance request and you do not have to justify it with why you need help. We fully honor the courage it takes to reach out in a moment of need, and we hope that we can continue to provide a place that is as judgment free as possible. That said, issues have come up where folks feel scared to ask for help without being anonymous because they don’t want to be attacked.

“We’d like to call on everyone to make a greater effort to accept people for where they are at and to help where you can …”

I’m a member and have been really impressed with the information that is shared and how people are helping one another.

While I’m thinking of it, another very worthwhile Facebook group is called Fans of Dr. Nirav Shah Maine, the director of the Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention. The doctor has reached super hero/super status here in Maine and beyond! There are 25,000 people in this group. There is a link to a fundraiser for the Good Shepherd Food Bank.

Of course, those of you in Sun Spots Land can ask for and offer help here, too if you need it. This Facebook page is another excellent resource.

DEAR SUN SPOTS: I noticed there was construction going on in Lewiston at the mall where Flagship Cinemas used to be. What is going in that building?

— Tim, no town

ANSWER: There is a lot of construction going on everywhere right now as business owners and contractors take advantage of this quiet time caused by COVID-19. According to a short blurb I found on, Gendron Place at 855 Lisbon St., formerly Promenade Mall, has a newer tenant, Paychex, a payroll and human resources company in Suite T-3A.

The property is being built out and renovated to accommodate retail, commercial, industrial clientele. Oftentimes, businesses keep their information private until they are ready to announce opening. Other times, there is information from the planning and development office in the municipality where the construction is happening, or from the developer or broker.

For this particular property, you can find information at I know you’re curious, but I would just contact them if you have a serious inquiry.

This column is for you, our readers. It is for your questions and comments. There are only two rules: You must write to the column and sign your name. We won’t use it if you ask us not to. Please include your phone number. Letters will not be returned or answered by mail, and telephone calls will not be accepted. Your letters will appear as quickly as space allows. Address them to Sun Spots, P.O. Box 4400, Lewiston, ME 04243-4400. Inquiries can also be emailed to [email protected].



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