As Maine welcomes students back to in-person classes and learning, athletic teams, after-school STEM programs and organizations are looking for ways to continue their respective programming. With pandemic-related disruptions to fund-raising continuing, UScellular’s Community Connections program provides a virtual way for K-12 groups to raise up to $1,000.

Whether they need STEM equipment, fresh uniforms or new instruments for the school band, organizers can register their group at communityconnections.uscellular.com to start earning sponsorship support online.

“2020 was a tough year for everyone, especially many academic and athletic groups and organizations who rely on fundraising and donations,” said Tabatha McKay, area vice president/general manager for UScellular in New England. “We hope that through local and virtual initiatives like Community Connections, we’re able to still support the goals our children and students set for themselves while doing so in a safe and responsible manner.”

Once registered, local nonprofit academic and athletic groups representing youth up to 12th grade have 14 days to rally their friends, families, and supporters to complete online activities that include taking short surveys, watching videos or following UScellular on its social channels. Each completed activity earns money that goes directly to the organization — up to $1,000 — and the website makes it easy to spread the word on social media.

Since launching the program in 2015, UScellular has awarded $1.4 million to nearly 3,100 groups nationwide. For more information and to view the official rules, please go to communityconnections.uscellular.com.