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August 2014 Newsletter

A Good Life, a Gift for Those Who Struggle

Pregnant at 14, Annette Hankins ran away from home. After having her second child, Hankins moved to Inwood House, where she learned how to better take care of her children and herself. Now 19, she will be a freshman at Borough of Manhattan Community College in the fall. MILDRED ANNA WILLIAMS: portrait at right.

Mildred Anna Williams traveled around the world twice after World War I, collecting paintings, bronzes, and furniture with her husband, Henry, a successful importer and exporter of wood and marble.

Williams never forgot that her childhood hadn’t been easy, and she set up a fund in The Trust to “support activities conducive to the welfare of girls.” It started with $2 million after her death in 1939, has supported dozens of nonprofits with hundreds of grants, and is now worth more than $23 million.

In June, we used the Williams Fund—with other funds—to pay for these grants: $90,000 to Sanctuary for Families to help victims of human trafficking; $146,000 to Inwood House, to guide single young mothers in making smart decisions about education, health, and future relationships; and $55,000 to Day One, to improve how social workers and school counselors work with teen girls to prevent date rape, and to push for legislation against sending abusive raunchy texts, or “sexting.”

While we doubt Mildred Anna Williams could have imagined a problem called “sexting,” we believe she’d be pleased by the ways she continues to help.

Read the next article in the August newsletter>>

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