Most of us know that in January 1966 Plymouth Harbor opened its doors to the first residents of our community. But what you may not know is that in 1967 the idea behind the Resident Fund Shop was formed.

The Fund Shop has certainly transformed over the years. In early 1967, it initially began as the “Memorial Fund” established by the Residents Association, where monetary gifts were raised as part of a blood drive, collecting more than $280 to help purchase blood for the original “infirmary.”

In the January 1968 issue of the Harbor Light, an article indicated a name change from the Memorial Fund to the “Resident Fund.” Along with this came a change in their mission — the Fund had evolved to begin seeking donations of used, “saleable” items that could be sold to the Woman’s Exchange, from which the Fund would receive 70 percent of the profit of sold items. Later that same year, an update was given in the resident Harbor Light newsletter, referencing a new designated closet area in a colony room where donated items could be stored.

As the Fund continued to grow, it remained committed to supporting purchases for the infirmary, such as wheelchairs, a subscription to Reader’s Digest (in large type), and more. But it also grew to support other purchases as well, such as the purchase of new curtains for the chapel and the like. Residents showed their support by donating clothing, jewelry, furniture, pots, pans, linens, and many other items, which became part of the colony closet and were given to the Woman’s Exchange for sale. In 1972, the Fund reported that the Woman’s Exchange had returned more than $2,800 to Plymouth Harbor for that fiscal year.

As the years passed, the Resident Fund blossomed, expanding its scope and service, and collecting any items that would help support its mission. In May 1987, Plymouth Harbor gathered to celebrate the 20th Anniversary of the Residents Association, during which they recognized the integral role that the Resident Fund had played over the years. By 1988, the Fund was given its own “room” on the ground floor of the Tower, where the sale of items could be made here at Plymouth Harbor — what we now know as the Resident Fund Shop.

Countless improvements are owed to the generosity of the Residents Association Fund. Today, the Resident Fund Shop continues to be managed by dedicated resident volunteers and the mission remains the same — offering donated items for sale, and using the proceeds to purchase items that are deemed necessary by our residents. This year, we are proud to celebrate the 50th Anniversary of the Resident Fund Shop, which has unwaveringly contributed to the generous atmosphere of Plymouth Harbor. Please join us in celebrating this wonderful piece of our history!