Kathy Strout, owner of Private Home Care Inc. of Belfast, was nominated by her SCORE mentors to attend SCORE's 50th anniversary event held in Portland June 19. SCORE, a national volunteer organization supported by the U.S. Small Business Administration, connects experienced business people who donate their time and knowledge with small business owners and those wanting to start a business. SCORE (www.score.org) has chapters in Augusta, Bangor, Ellsworth, Lewiston, Portland and South Paris; and their 130 mentors work with people throughout Maine. In 2013, SCORE clients started 251 new businesses and created 324 jobs in Maine.

In June 2012, Strout first met with a SCORE mentor and convinced him of her desire and ability to have an agency that would screen, hire and train quality staff who could provide care to those in need allowing them to stay in their homes. Strout's assets were experience and knowledge in private home care and a strong commitment to her employees and her clients. The start-up challenges were significant and many challenges remain. Private Home Care Inc. has established a record of quality care for its clients and a stable, motivated staff of nineteen care providers.

Since her initial SCORE meeting, Strout has met with her SCORE mentors at least thirty times plus many emails and phone conversations. Strout continues to work with her mentors whose advice and time are volunteered.