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How this Maine state rep showed up for her community during COVID

Portsmouth Herald Published 6:01 AM EDT Mar. 13, 2022 Updated 6:02 AM EDT Mar. 13, 2022

Michele Meyer is one of USA TODAY’s Women of the Year, a recognition of women across the country who have made a significant impact. The annual program is a continuation of Women of the Century, a 2020 project that commemorated the 100th anniversary of women gaining the right to vote. Meet this year’s honorees at

State Rep. Michele Meyer likes what Mister Rogers said his mother told him whenever he became frightened as a boy: “Look for the helpers.”

It’s the helpers who will take care of you. It’s the helpers who will bring hope and balance in uncertain and frightening times. Such as a pandemic.

When COVID-19 took hold in March 2020, Meyer made it easier for everyone in her hometown of Eliot to look for the helpers. She created Eliot Strong, a Facebook group where residents could find ways to support each other during the greatest health crisis in a century.

“Lending a hand is the purest form of community,” Meyer said in the group's first post. “While it should not require a crisis for us to mobilize, that’s what we’ve got, and there are those among us, ready to give a hand to those in need.” more...



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