About a dozen refrigerators offering free food have popped up on sidewalks throughout Boston’s neighborhoods, the latest in Mattapan. The free-standing appliances are part of a national trend of volunteers acquiring a donated refrigerator, finding a host willing to share electricity and recruiting other volunteers to clean and stock the fridge. The food is available…

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There’s a new bodega in downtown Fitchburg, stocked with a colorful array of hot chocolate and chips and beans that come special from Central America. Owner Carmen Mejía de Guzmán and her husband moved to Fitchburg from Chelsea in the summer of 2019. They could afford to buy a house here — but there was…

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In a lot of ways, it felt like a typical morning at The Kitchen Cafe. Customers trickled in and out. Music bounced off the walls decorated with chalkboards and Banksy prints. And the air was filled with a comforting clatter: crackling bacon on the flat top grill, the squeal of steam from the espresso machine, the thump of…

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A significant number of Mainers with outstanding student loans could see some major relief under a proposal that newly inaugurated President Joe Biden will reportedly make to cancel thousands in federal student loan debt for each person, among other efforts. In addition to planning an executive order to “pause” federal student loan collection through September,…

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Between remote and hybrid classes, the pandemic has drastically altered education for high schoolers this fall and left many students and parents frustrated and dissatisfied. And those feelings could be having a major impact on how many students — particularly those from rural Maine — may choose to go on to college. As the school…

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When Marvin Moreno lost his job at a fish processing plant last spring, he knew he’d have to scramble to pay rent on the East Boston apartment he shared with his wife. He should have been OK for a while. That’s because a statewide ban on evictions was in place, to protect tenants like Moreno…

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Howard K. Hill wants to bring the economic, social and cultural vibrancy back to Hartford’s Barbour Street. On a hot summer day, the funeral home owner may have been the only person dressed in a full suit strolling down a street peppered with closed businesses, dilapidated housing and streets in need of a serious cleanup.…

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