Massachusetts. State Board of Charity.

Annual report online

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Immigrants, alien .......... 134

Incorporation of private charities, recommendation that Board's approval

be requisite to ......... 12

Industrial School for Boys 42

Special improvements ......... 46

Industrial School for Girls 46

Special improvements ......... 49

Infants, lioenscxl boarding houses for 154, 156

Under two years, in boarding houses ...... 157

Infirmary, State .......... 30

Institutions. See State Institutions.

Inventory of State institutions ........ 64

Investigating departnjent ......... 140

Investigation of settlements ........ 122

Juvenile offenders, disposition by the courts ..... 150

Lakeville State Sanatoriimi ........ 57

Special improvements ......... 58

Lancaster. See Industrial School for Girls.

Laws concerning charities of the Commonwealth, Board authorised to

publish manual of ........ . 21

Legislation affecting the Board enacted in 1913 . . 14

Legislation, reconmiendations of the Board for .... . 10

Leprosy. See Penikese Hospital.

Act affecting care and treatment of ..... . 14

Licensed boarding houses for infants ....... 154

Licensed lying-in hospitals 163

Localities from which new children were received ..... 152

Lodging houses and wayfarers' lodges, recommendation that Board take

supervision of . 12

Lying-in hospitals, licensed ........ 163

Ljrman School for Boys ......... 40

Special improvements ......... 42

Maintenance of State institutions, cost of ..... . 24

Movement of population in State institutions .... 25

Manual of laws relating to charities, Board authorized to publish . 21

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Maasachusetts Hospital School 50

Meetmgs of the Board 185

Members of the Board vi, 3

Middlesex County Training School 97

Minor children, settled, provided for in families 115

Minor Wards Division, invesUgating department ..... 140

Minor wards, recommendation of State Hospital for certain . 11

Mothers' aid 128

Mothers with dependent children, act for suitably aiding ... 18

National Conference of Charities and Corrections, Uniform Statistics ^

Neglected children, diq>oeal by the courts 151

New children, localities from which received ..... 152

Non-eupport proceedings 145

Norfolk, Bristol and Plymouth Union Training School .... 97

Norfolk State Hospital 36

Special improvements 38

North Riwding State Sanatcnrium 55

Special improvements 57

Number of inmates in State institutions ...... 23

Officers of the Board 3

Organisation of the Board 3

Outdoor poor. State 118

Parental School. See Suffolk County Training School.

Parole visitors 185

Paupers, city and town 113

Pauper children, act affecting care of, in almshouses .... 15

Pauper returns, penalty for failure to make ...... 116

Poor, State outdoor 118

Penalty incurred by cities and towns for failure to make pauper returns . 116

Penikeee Hospital 60

Recommendation of separate Board of Trustees for ... 11

Request for new hospital building 14

Empk>yee8 182

Pensions. See Mothers and Dependent Children.

Per capita cost of maintenance of State institutions, net 71

Poor relief, returns of 9

Population, movement of, in State institutions 25

Ftivate charities, recommendation that Board's approval be requisite to

incorporation of ........ . 12

Publication, general duties of the Board 8

Receipts of State institutions ........ 58

Reconunendations for legislation 10

Registers of Pkt>bate and Deeds, reconmiendation as to notice from re-
garding charitable bequests 13

Rdmbursement by cities and towns for care of settled dependent children . 144

Removals 123

Rutland State Sanatoriimi 54

Special improvements ......... 55

Sanatoria, State tuberculosis 53

Settled poor persons relieved by cities and towns ..... 113

Settlement w<»-k 122

Shirley. See Industrial School for Boys.

^ck persons, act affecting reimbursement to cities and towns for care of 20

Sick State poor 119

Special district police officer, recommendation regarding provision for 13

Standing committees of the Board 3

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OF CHARITY. [P. D. 17, Part I.]



. ' . . . . 36



■en, etc 124

of the Board 21


. 23


omparative view .... 25






dgating department .... 140

, of State Hospital for certain . 11





>oard ...... 6

oard 143




dng Schools.

'vision of the Board .... 21

i 166

ird 7


1 175


>spitai for certain minor . . 11

that Board take supervision . . 12



1 dependent children, and mothers' aid.


m State Infirmary .... 124


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State Board of Charity

Part II

Charitable Corporations

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InYMtlgstion of Charitable Organisatioiii seeking Incorporation*

Chapter 181 of the Acts of 1910 requires the Board to in-
vestigate, give public hearing, and report its findings to the
Secretary of the Commonwealth, in all cases of charitable
organizations which seek incorporation. The text of the act is
as follows : —

Acts ov 1910, Chapter 181.

Section 1. Before making and issuing a certificate for the incorpora-
tion of a charitable corporation the secretary of the commonwealth shall
aJso forward such statement as is described in the preceding section to
the state board of charity, which shall immediately make an investiga-
tion as to the persons who have asked to be incorporated and as to the
purposes of the incorporation^ and any other material facts relative
thereto, and shall give them a public hearing, notice of which shall be
published once a week for three successive weeks in some paper pub-
lished in the county in which the corporation is to have its principal
office or rooms, and if said office or rooms are to be in Boston, in some
Boston daily paper, the last publication to be at least three days before
the day set for the hearing, and shall forthwith report to the secretary
of the commonwealth all the facts ascertained by it. If it appears to
the secretary of the commonwealth from said report or otherwise that
the probable purpose of the formation of the proposed corporation is
to cover any illegal business, or that the persons asking for incorpora-
tion are not suitable persons, from lack of financial ability or from any
other cause, he shall refuse to issue his certificate. If he refuses to issue
his certificate, the persons asking to be incorporated may appeal to the
superior court, which shall hear the case and finally determine whether
or not the certificate of incorporation shall be issued.

Section 2. This act shall take effect upon its passage.

During the year ending November 30, 1913, 63 applications
for charters have been referred by the Secretary of the Com-
monwealth to this Board, which has investigated, given hear-
ings, and reported upon the 53 applications noted below. In

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8 other cases the petitions were withdrawn from this Board by
the Secretary of State before report, while the petitioners in two
other cases decided not to press their applications.

Beechwood Improvement Association, Incorporated, Cobasset.

Brotherhood of Hebrew Painters' Aid Association, Boston.

Cambridge and Somerville Gemelath Chesed Charitable Loan Associa-
tion, Cambridge.

Carney Hospital Norses' AlumnsB, Incorporated.

Congregation Havers Acheain of Stongbton, Mass. (Refused.)

County Sligo Benevolent and Protective Association of Greater Boston.

Denison House, Boston.

East Boston Credit Association. (Withheld.)

East End Hebrew Gemilatb Chassodim Association of Fall River.

Fall River Retail Grocers' Association.

Finnish Apostolic Lutheran Parish, Fitchburg.

Florence Crittenton Rescue League, Lowell.

Good Will, Incorporated, Springfield.

Haverhill City Hospital Aid Association.

Hebrew Free Loan Society, Boston.

Hebrew Ladies' Aid Society, Framingham.

Hebrew Ladies Helping Hand Society, Fall River.

Helping Hand Society, Easthampton.

Henryk Dabrowski Society, New Bedford.

Hutchinson Home Corporation for Aged Women, Somerville.

Hebrew Sheltering Aid Society, Fall River. (Withheld.)

Isaac Alberts Memorial Aid Association, Roxbury.

Italian Women's International Aid and Christian Association, Boston.

Lanesville Finnish Workingmen's Association, Gloucester.

Linwood 0. Towne Scholarship Association, Haverhill.

Maplewood Institute Association of Pittsfield, Mass.

Massachusetts Conference Association of Seventh Day Adventists, Lan-

Massachusetts Permanent Firemen's Association, Worcester.

Massachusetts Royal Arcanum Hospital Fund Association, Incc^rpo-
rated, Boston.

Massachusetts Teachers' Federation, Boston.

Millenium Guild, Boston.

Mystic Order of Jovians of the World, Boston. (Refused.)

Peabody Visiting Nurse Association, Peabody.

Polish National Alliance Immigration Aid Society, Boston.

Prince Hall Grand Commandery Knights Templar Corporation, Boston.

Quincy Day Nursery Association.

Quincy Women's Club.

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Rhode Island and Massachusetts Christian Conference, Incorporated,

New Bedford.
Riverside Men's Club of Walpole. (Withheld*)
Roxbury Hebrew Free School Association.
St. Elizabeth's Hospital Nurses' Alumnie Association, Incorporated,

Social Science Cluti of Ware.
Tabernacle Society of Boston.

Thaddeus Kosciuszki Society, Greenfield. (Refused.)
Tifareth Israel Congregation of Winthrop.
Unitarian Ladies' Charitable Society, Marlborough.
White Cross Association for Graduate Nurses of Holyoke, Mass.
White Plague Relief Fund Association, Lynn.
William Lawrence Camp, Incorporated, Gloucester.
Wing Memorial Hospital, Palmer.
Young Women's Hebrew Association of Boston.
Young Women's Hebrew Association of Lawrence.
Zion Mutual Aid Association, Incorporated, Lynn. (Refused.)

Forty-five of the above petitions have been granted and char-
ters issued, while 8, or 15 per cent., have been refused or with-
held. Of the 8 applications which were refused or withheld,
2 were for private gain, 2 covered insurance features, 1 was a
credit union, 1 a business loan agency, 1 a social organization,
and 1 was carried on in quarters which were so poor as to be
Tinsuited to the proposed work.

During the three years and nine months which have elapsed
since the passage of the law (March 7, 1910, to November 30,
1913) the Board has reported upon 213 applications for char-
ters, 167 of which were granted and 46 refused, while in 28
other cases the applications were withdrawn.

Inspeetion of Charitable CorporatioiiB.

Chapter 379 of the Acts of 1909 requires the State Board of
Charity to make annual inspection of charitable corporations
which consent to said inspection. The text of the act is as
follows : —

Acts of 1909, Chapteb 379.

Section 1. The state board of charity, upon the request or with the
consent of a charitable corporation which, under the provisions of sec-
tion fourteen of chapter eighty-four of the Revised Laws, as amended
by chapter four hundred and two of the acts of the year nineteen hun-

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dred and three^ is required to make an annual report to said board,
shall, at least once in every year, visit and inspect the institution or
investigate the work of such corporation.
Section 2. This act shall take effect upon its passage.

In the three years since the work of inspection was begun,
597 visits have been made to charitable corporations in all parts
of the Conunonv^realth.

The great possibilities of supervision over the field of private
charity are becoming increasingly apparent, not only in the
matter of safeguarding the public from fraud and imposture,
but also in developing improved standards of work. Already
the more wide-awake societies are alive to these advantages and
are endeavoring to bring about a closer co-operation with the

The Board does not endorse charities seeking contributions
from the public. This rule is never varied, regardless of the
known standing of the society in question. For this reason no
agencies are warranted in using the fact that they have been
inspected, in such manner as to lead the public to infer that
inspection means their approval by this Board.

During the past year 241 charitable corporations have been
inspected. Seven were found to be non-charitable. Fifty-three
may be classed as badly managed, since they do not measure up
to reasonable standards of work. Among them are 8 children's
homes, 5 day nurseries, 4 fresh-air homes and camps, 5 societies
for club and class work, 3 old persons' homes, 1 dispensary, 17
relief societies, and 10 others giving various forms of assistance.

The 180 other societies vary greatly in their efficiency. Many
of them are not in the first rank, but even these are endeavoring
to maintain fair standards in some of the essential require-
ments, and cannot, therefore, be classed as badly managed. In
this, as in previous reports, the Board has withheld the names
of the charities which have been inspected, a course for which
there appears to be ample justification, since an increasing num-
ber of societies have shown a determination to raise their stand-
ards of work and have come into conference with the Board
with this end in view. As a result of such conference several
societies have adopted suggestions which will undoubtedly make

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their work more valuable. The Board stands ready to give to
all charities that have been inspected an opinion as to the eflS-
ciency of their work, with reasons therefor.

Since the work of inspection was begun, three years ago, the
Board has visited a majority of the incorporated charitable
organizations in the State, and has had an opportimity to study
and compare the methods employed by a large group of persons,
a nimiber of whom are experts in their several fields. It may
therefore be of service to those in charge of the various charitable
agencies to set out a few general standards which are recognized
and followed by many social workers. Such a statement should
assist the various societies to measure the efficiency of their
methods, and may also be instrumental in keeping before the
contributing public its duty to require a high quality of service
from those who are the trustees of its gifts.

The first requisite of a well-managed society is an active board
of directors, who shall intelligently outline the general policies
of their agency and assist and encourage the administrative
officers to follow such policies. They should regard themselves
as the trustees of the public, so far as the handling of the fund
is concerned, and not profit in any financial way through their
position, unless they perform a large amount of administrative
work, and their compensation is voted by the Board.

A number of the chairities visited are virtually in the hands
of one person, often the principal worker. In some cases the
latter has been the founder of the society, and the work is his
livelihood. The directors in such cases are often mere dummies
who lend their names and take none of the responsibilities which
belong to them. In other cases, the workers may come and go
at the will of the Board, but during their term of employment
they are expected to shoulder all the responsibility. There are
various reasons for this apathy on the part of the directors. It
may be due to lack of interest in the work ; to timidity caused
by the autocratic attitude of the paid worker, or to a belief in
the stability of the charity whereby they assume that it will
run without their assistance. Such a state of mind is account-
able for the unprogressive methods of many so-called " old-
fashioned charities."

In some of the agencies a single director assumes full power

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to settle both questions of policy and matters of detail. In
addition to the fact that his attitude is wrong, he may also prove
a benevolent tyrant. In still others he may be unfitted, through
lack of knowledge and infirmity of temperament, or both, to
guide others, in which case the beneficiaries suffer in proportion
as they are dependent upon the charity for their care. In one
society the immediate result is that unsuitable employees are
retained because they will work for less than those who are better
qualified. The inmates are not considerately treated, and the
food is not always suited to their condition. The active director
will listen to no criticism and the rest of the board are compliant.

The directors should be responsible for raising needed funds ;
they should not require the administrative officers to assume the
burden. If they require assistance in this work it should be
given by a salaried person and not by a collector on commission.
2f or should directors allow benefits or entertainments to be man-
aged by professional persons. The entire proceeds of such
affairs, after the payment of printing and other necessary ex-
penses, should be paid to the charity which is sought to be aided
by them. The professional promoter, on the other hand, usually
charges a large amount of money compared with the time ex-
pended. If the proceeds of the benefit promise to be substantial,
he may contract for a comparatively small commission. Benefits
which net $5,000, out of which the promoter receives $1,000,
are, however, expensive affairs for the community. If he agrees
upon a lump simi for service and expenses, he may put in suffi-
cient time to assure himself of that amount, after which his
energy lags.

Beneficiaries should never be allowed to solicit for the charity.
In some of the children's homes the little ones are sent out daily
with baskets to collect food, are encouraged to ask passers-by for
money, to carry begging letters, and, in the case of one home, to
drag boxes and wood for kindling through the streets. The least
offendtBrs in this direction send their children out to sell tickets
for entertainments or benefits. The tendency in such cases is
to accustom the children to begging methods rather than to the
idea of rendering value for what they receive. Such a course,
persisted in, is likely to breed paupers faster than it creates

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Proper financial accounts of receipts and disbursements should
be kept and an annual audit made. A bond should be required
from persons having the custody of funds, the expense of which
is a legitimate charge upon the society. Many directors allow
a lack of system in a charitable society which they would not
tolerate in a business office because they fail to realize their
trusteeship in the matter of caring for charitable funds. Some
attempt to excuse their laxness on the score of rendering the
services without charge; while others are not informed as to
proper methods.

Another important requisite in a well-managed organization
is the employment of workers who are especially trained in
social work. This field is fast coming to be recognized as special-
ized ; so much so that the untrained, well-intentioned " charity
worker" is no longer employed by societies which seek to do
efficient work. Such agencies are convinced that doles pauperize
the recipient, and that constructive plans for aiding needy per-
sons to their feet must be made by those who have studied the
causes of poverty and the best methods of preventing its re-

Among the 17 relief societies which are classed as badly man-
aged there are several with good-sized fimds. Not one has a
worker who is capable of making a skilful inquiry into the causes
of distress among its applicants; nor do they co-operate with
societies which have the proper machinery for making good in-
vestigations. They exchange no information with other relief
societies in the community, and are not in a position to judge
whether or not their work duplicates that of other agencies.
Many of them have long lists of beneficiaries to whom they give
very small amounts. So few facts have they in regard to the
persons they aid that the question of adequacy cannot have been
considered by them, and they leave the beneficiaries to piece
out their bounty by soliciting aid from other organizations
which employ similar methods. Societies which desire to study
the problem of relieving the poor should therefore employ per-
sons who are able to make thorough investigations or else co-
operate with agencies which have the machinery for this work.

Some societies whose workers are not trained in investigation
co-operate with other societies having trained workers to the

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extent of getting information from them about applicants.
This course, however, serves no useful purpose if the agents
receiving such assistance are so inexperienced that they cannot
use it wisely. A day nursery following this method was found
to be filing much useful information away which it had paid
another society to furnish, and the matron was using her own
judgment as to admissions.

Workers should therefore have the proper background of train-
ing and experience to interpret the facts ; only then will they be
in a position to make plans, not only to relieve distress, but to
prevent a recurrence of the need.

They should know all the resources of their community and be
able to co-operate with them in carrying out plans. If this were
done many societies could handle a larger number of cases and
give more adequate relief without materially increasing their
expenditures for aid given. Some of the agencies could, by a
more exhaustive study of their cases, bring about the co-operation
of sources of aid which are often unknown to them. Many of
these are natural sources, within the family itself; others are
less intimately connected, and yet may represent bonds of union.
These include ties of relationship, religion, and fraternity. Be-
sides, there are the various societies operating in the charitable
field which should be enlisted in the work of aiding applicants

Some agencies which are criticized for spending a compara-
tively small amount for relief, in comparison with that paid out
for salaries, are, in fact, doing creditable work in organizing
aid for their cases. Such aid may include some material relief
from their own treasury, but their services may also be enlisted
to procure for the applicant other forms of relief which may be
necessary to restore him to self-support. It is a well-known fact
that a large proportion of the applicants for charity require, not
only the inmiediate necessaries, such as food, fuel and clothing,
but medical aid, a change of work, or some other form of assist-
ance which is calculated to restore the applicant to a normal
plane of living. Such constructive effort is represented in the
budget of the society by salaries rather than by payment for
tangible items of relief.

Persistent follow-up work is necessary in order that plans for

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the relief of applicants shall not miscarry. An agency which
handles cases of yonng unmarried mothers deals with but one
phase of the problem when it gives them institutional care for a
few weeks or months and then sends them out to face the world
without further provision. Girls who are feeble-minded should
"be given proper protection and shoidd not be placed unsuper-
vised in the commimity. Intelligent after-care requires special
workers and cannot be given by persons whose time is more or
less taken up with other pressing work. If the society is not
in a position to provide such workers it should co-operate with
some agency that has the machinery. Thus a dispensary which
has among its patients many expectant mothers who are unmar-
ried refers them for placement and after-care to a children's
aid society.

Another test of efficient methods is the kind and quality of the
records kept These should show clearly all the facts brought
out by the investigation, indicating the various steps taken, in
such manner as to help an able social worker to diagnose the
causes of distress and form a plan for adequate relief. Some of
the societies visited keep case records which are useless except

Online LibraryMassachusetts. State Board of CharityAnnual report → online text (page 14 of 60)