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“Helping people make a home” non-profit receives $500,000 grant

The Manton Foundation offers support for Household Goods


ACTON – A local non-profit that collects furniture and other household goods and distributes them to those in need has received major support last week.

HouseHold Goods announced on Dec. 19 that it has received a $500,000 grant fromThe Manton Foundation. The money is going towards the nonprofit’s Build the Way Home Capital Campaign, which is meant to improve its services to the communities it serves throughout the Nashoba Valley.

The Manton Foundation was created in 1991 by Jim and Gretchen Manton to fund organizations focusing on education, medical research, community preservation, arts and culture.

The origins of Household Goods, which goes by the motto “Helping People Make a Home,” date back to 1990, when Barbara and Ira Smith were looking for furniture donations to furnish the apartment of a woman and her young sons fleeing violence in San Salvador.

In 2013, Smith was among 25 women recognized by The Sun in its annual “Salute to Women” special section.

After the couple received an influx of donations, they gave what was left to the local Housing Authority that later told others to contact the Smiths if they needed help finding furniture. The organization was officially incorporated as an independent 501(c)(3) not-for-profit in 1999.

“After several years of planning and design, we are permitted and ready to execute our plans to address the challenges we face in meeting the evolving needs of our donors, clients, and volunteers,” Sharon Martens, executive director of Household Goods, said in a press release. “This outstanding gift from The Manton Foundation underscores the value of this project to the community. We hope The Manton Foundation’s generosity will inspire others to also participate in the campaign.”

The $2 million campaign will pay for multiple additions to the organization’s headquarters on Main Street, including building a road that will circle the building, an additional 4,000 square-feet of building space and a second entrance to receive more donations.