The History of Women’s Aid and Relief Society and Pearl Manor
The roots of the Pearl Manor Fund began in 1875 with a small group of 24 Manchester-area women who banded together to serve the needs of the greater community. They sought inclusivity – any woman could join the work of the Society for an annual fee of 50 cents.
The Women’s Aid and Relief Society had a strong impact on the mill town of their day and created positive change in hundreds of lives. Their work evolved as the community did, remaining committed to housing and nursing needs and transforming their buildings and services to match; from opening the area’s first hospital to creating Pearl Manor.
The Pearl Manor Fund was established by probate court order in 2005 when approximately $5 million of Women’s Aid Home’s assets were transferred to the Mary & John Elliot Charitable Foundation.
Pearl Manor Fund
Each year, Pearl Manor Funds are distributed through annual grants to local nonprofits for the specific purpose of providing assistance, comfort, care, and treatment for the elderly population of Manchester and surrounding communities.
Grants are awarded for programs addressing, but not limited to, medical needs, safe housing needs, nutritional needs, legal needs, independent living assistance, and transportation assistance.
The grants are reviewed and awarded by a committee of community volunteers — the Pearl Manor Fund Advisory Committee — and are to be distributed in accordance with the original intent of Pearl Manor.
Pearl Manor Fund Grant Process
FIELD OF INTEREST: The Pearl Manor Fund is distributed through grants for the specific purpose of providing assistance, comfort, care, and treatment for the elder population to include, but not limited to, the needs surrounding medical care, safe housing, nutrition, independent living, and transportation assistance.
AREA SERVED: The Pearl Manor Fund supports the efforts that benefit the elder residents of the Greater Manchester area. The area specifically includes the towns of Allenstown, Auburn, Bedford, Candia, Deerfield, Dunbarton, Goffstown, Hooksett, Manchester, and New Boston.
GRANT PROGRAM: Grants are awarded on an annual basis (when funds are available) to support new or expanding projects/programs that implement solutions and address the critical and unmet needs of the elder community. Grants are typically made in the $10,000 to $25,000 range, although applications for grants for highly collaborative and impactful programs at higher levels will be considered.
PROGRAM PRIORITIES: When considering proposals, priority is given to funding activities that serve the Fund’s interests. The Pearl Manor Fund seeks to support programs that:
- Meet the needs of the elder population, such as improved and expanded healthcare, affordable transportation, home maintenance, socialization, and/or nutrition;
- Promote independent living, self-care, and healthy lifestyle choices;
- Strengthen family support services through education and support to the caregiver;
- Provide realistic and measurable outcomes that address the identified need;
- Provide an evaluation plan that identifies data collection methods;
- Detail the applicant’s capacity to implement the project;
- Identify other programs that address the needs for the funds requested;
- Involve collaboration with other agencies, when possible.
Pearl Manor Fund Advisory Committee
- Richard Rawlings, Chair
- Charles S. Goodwin
- Selma Naccach-Hoff
- Chris Thompson
- Michael S. Turilli, CFO
- Adrienne Rupp
- Ellie Cochran
- Kelli Rafferty, Staff