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  The Western Association of Ladies for the Relief and Employment of the Poor, a private grantmaking foundation, was incorporated in 1847 by a group of women from the western part of the City of Philadelphia. Its original mission was to help disadvantaged residents of West Philadelphia find employment that provided them with a decent living and a sense of dignity. The Western Association became one of the first job training and child care programs in the country.    Over time the work of the foundation has evolved from providing direct services to supporting high quality organizations that address basic human needs, as well as investing in workforce woman sewingdevelopment for residents of
Philadelphia County.

“The Western Association of Ladies for the Relief and Employment of the Poor became a major force, providing social and educational services for the disadvantaged families in Philadelphia in the second half of the nineteenth century.”
–Roy Ziegler, The Parrys of
Philadelphia and New Hope