Rachel Pardoe: Being a Caregiver Made Me a Better Grantmaker
March 12, 2018   |   By The New York Community Trust
Being a Caregiver Made Me a Better Grantmaker

Our View | Rachel Pardoe, program officer

Rachel Pardoe, Healthy Lives Program Officer

Rachel Pardoe

When work hits close to home

“I oversee The Trust’s grantmaking for the elderly, so you might think it was easy for me to get my grandmother the services she needed in her final years. Not at all. Grandma Wilma was a lab technician in Forest Hills, Queens. After she was diagnosed with cancer, she had trouble riding buses—and she dreaded using New York’s unreliable Access-A-Ride to go to treatments. Finding palliative care for her proved difficult, too. For months, my family tried everything to get her quality services.

That experience motivates me as I recommend grants to help seniors throughout the city lead fulfilling, independent lives while aging at home. At The Trust, we pay particular attention to seniors in poor neighborhoods who need social and health support. For example, we help Service Program for Older People (commonly known as SPOP) bring physical and mental health care to homebound seniors. 

That’s just one grant. We do so much more: We help LGBTQ elders get medical care in their neighborhoods. We improve arts programs at senior centers (see below). We fund groups that train older New Yorkers to bring healthy cuisine to their communities. Our work is possible because, decade after decade, generous New Yorkers like you leave money to The Trust for all sorts of purposes, including making life better for those over 65. I often think of my grandmother as we address the problems facing the city’s growing population of seniors—including our grant to help New York Lawyers for the Public Interest make the outdated Access-a-Ride service more efficient while saving taxpayers money. Join us as we make New York City better, for everyone.”

Learn more about our work to support aging New Yorkers

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