Case for Support

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Seventy-Five State Street is a vibrant community for the elderly of all backgrounds. Those who contribute to its operation can expect to enrich the lives of hundreds of current and future residents of one of the oldest not-for-profit, charitable institutions in the City of Portland. At the present time, approximately one quarter of residents have their care and housing subsidized by our endowment fund in addition to the MaineCare system. Therefore, it is essential to receive strong support from the larger community to ensure that this good work continues.

Mission Statement
It is the mission of Seventy-Five State Street to promote the independence, dignity, and individuality of older people of all financial abilities by offering stimulating and supportive programs and services in a gracious urban residential setting.

Tribute Garden Commemorative Bricks
Honor or memorialize someone special or mark a significant occasion with an engraved brick to be placed in the Tribute Garden.

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It is the philosophy of Seventy-Five State Street to provide services and housing to people in a manner that respects each person’s individuality and autonomy. It is also the philosophy and expectation that all Seventy-Five State Street employees are treated with and treat each other with respect.


1854 Association for the Relief of Aged Indigent Women established

  • Located on the corner of Elm and Oxford Streets
  • Funded by city churches
  • Addressed needs of widows, domestic staff, others without families
  • Endowment fund established with assets left by former residents

1870 Name officially changed to The Home for Aged Women
1872 Home moved to 64 Emery Street
1926 Operated by volunteer Board of Managers, nursing wing built
1968 Extensive repairs and renovations needed at 64 Emery Street
1969 Board of Trustees formed, administrator hired, plans made for new building
1975 Current building opened, named Seventy-Five State Street
1984 Wing added, former Park Danforth buildings purchased, male residents
1999 Independent living program established
2009 Renovations totaling $8,000,000 completed
2016 Partnership with Avesta Housing

Seventy-Five State Street offers both independent and assisted living opportunities in the heart of Portland’s historic West End. As one of the oldest not-for-profit, charitable institutions in the city, it is locally controlled by an all volunteer Board of Trustees. It is a vibrant community of diverse individuals from all economic backgrounds and life experiences. An active residents’ government exists; programs are resident driven; and residents serve on the Board of Trustees as well as on the Board of Managers.

Seventy-Five State Street functions as a small city within a city with a distinct family atmosphere. A professional management team oversees a staff which exhibits impressive longevity, thereby eliminating the need for outside agency assistance. The staff is trained to focus on individual choice, dignity and autonomy for all residents. At present, the physical plant is made up of 152 private assisted and independent living apartments, dining rooms, sitting areas, meeting rooms, a theater, a community center and a small convenience store, as well as garden areas for outdoor enjoyment.

During its 158 years of service, Seventy-Five State Street has learned to evolve and change with the times. The organization has been pro-active regarding state regulation and, thus, has influenced state policy-making in the assisted living arena. Today, as in the past, Seventy-Five State Street continues to provide a comfortable, safe and supportive environment for its many residents.

The Challenge
In order to ensure that Seventy-Five State Street continues to meet the challenges of its mission for another 150 years and beyond, continuing financial investments must be made. The physical plant must be routinely updated for comfort, aesthetics and technological advances in health care. Excellent staff must be retained and recruited. The customers’ needs and desires must be met in order to remain competitive in the marketplace. While anticipating that state and federal MaineCare dollars will continue to be at risk, alternatives to the under funded MaineCare system must be explored in order to be able to continue providing services for a broad spectrum of clients. The endowment fund, which is a tribute to so many benefactors since 1854, must be carefully invested and managed in order to maintain a stable financial base. Seventy-Five State Street’s market niche must be evaluated on a regular basis with a willingness to adjust to the changing housing and health care needs of a growing population of elders.      

The Plan
Seventy-Five State Street continues to embrace a pioneering spirit as it assesses adaptations and innovations for the future. Strategic plans are being reviewed and revised on an ongoing basis. Creative ideas for managing investments and growing the endowment are continually being evaluated.

The following areas of need have been identified for attention:

  • Renovation of the main dining room
  • Salon renovation and upgrade
  • Making more entrances and exits handicapped accessible
  • Projects identified by resident groups to improve the community for all
  • Continuation of the Master Garden Plan through the Commemorative Brick project
  • Gifts to the Endowment Fund in order to continue the mission

Some of the important items that have recently been purchased thanks to generous donor support include the following:

  • A new piano
  • An additional vehicle for the residents transportation program
  • A new whirlpool tub system in an updated spa room
  • A new sound system for residents’ programs

Ways to Support
As a not-for-profit, independent and assisted living community, Seventy-Five State Street welcomes tax deductible contributions. Donors can feel proud to participate in the continuation of a Portland landmark which has served countless numbers of elders since 1854. All gifts, large or small, are gratefully received. To make a gift or to schedule an appointment to discuss your contribution, please contact Janice Drinan, Development Director, at or 775-7775 x 203. There are various ways in which to offer support:

  1. Annual Appeal gifts supporting projects directly benefiting residents
  2. Gifts to the Endowment Fund
  3. Tribute gifts honoring or memorializing a loved one
  4. Planned giving through trusts, annuities and bequests
  5. Unrestricted monetary gifts
  6. Designated monetary gifts for projects of special interest to the donor
  7. Commemorative bricks to be installed in the Tribute Garden
  8. Gifts to Residents’ Benefit Fund for residents with limited resources
  9. In-kind gifts
  10. Volunteer efforts