SANFORD, Maine – Pocket change can really add up! Especially if you count every penny, nickel, dime and quarter throughout the year, for years and years. For Doris & Val Grondin, counting the change has meant thousands in donations for Waban’s annual Telethon. This year, as Waban and the Grondins prepare for the upcoming March 16th event, they’re working toward their goal of $4,000, which is then matched by General Electric, Val’s former employer.

Many of the Springvale couple’s friends and family know to save change, so Doris and Val can count it, take the bags of coins to the bank and then donate the collection to help Waban. Typically, the change is simply collected from jars, which are located at organizations throughout York County (drivers can even donate their change at the Maine Turnpike’s Toll Booth!). According to Doris, “The change bags can sometimes weigh up to 28 pounds! Those bags are heavy! But each time we take it to the bank, they’re happy to count it and give us the funds that we can then give to Waban.” Throughout the year, as people “save their pennies,” Doris likes to remind people, “Don’t forget! We take all change, not just pennies – and we’ll even take your dollars!”

It’s that kind of community support that is critical to the work that Waban does on behalf of children with autism and other intellectual disabilities, who receive specialized programs and services at the Fraser Ford Child Development Center. The state-of-the-art Autism Therapy Wing provides help for kids from ages 2.5 to 7 years old. Not only does the Fraser Ford Child Development Center help children reach their full potential, but each dollar spent on early intervention yields a $13 return on that initial investment.

Funds raised will be counted at Waban’s 48th annual Telethon, scheduled to take place on March 16, 2019 at the St. Ignatius Gym, 25 Riverside Ave in Sanford, from 10 am – 6 pm. The community is encouraged to join in the fun, by visiting the Telethon, livestreaming it from the website, watching it on Atlantic Broadband, or listening to it on The Legends 102.3FM or 1220 AM. Many business and community members donate gifts and items that the community can then submit a donation for. To donate now, call 207.324.5344 or visit or email Val or Doris at

Simply collect pennies throughout the year, and bring them to Waban’s Main Office at:

5 Dunaway Drive in Sanford, ME.