Via its Board of Management. In 1867 just prior to Confederation nine parishioners from St. Paul’s Church each donated 10 pounds of sterling to start St. Paul’s Alms House of Industry for Girls. Additional money was raised through further gifts received from St. Paul’s parishioners, fund raising efforts with door-to-door sales of baked goods, and very modest fees. A mortgage financed by Enos Collins through Collins Bank on Historic Properties allowed the purchase of the original house on Tower Road. The Collins Bank forgave the interest each year. Girls aged 10 to 14 years old were eligible. The house was supervised by a matron and the girls went to school and church. Later they found work, usually as domestic servants and were carefully placed in “suitable” homes.
St. Paul’s Alms House of Industry for Girls was incorporated in 1887 by an Act of the Legislature of Nova Scotia as a separate entity from the parish and later the name was shortened to “St. Paul’s Home for Girls”. Through the turn of the century, World War I and the Halifax Explosion the operation of St. Paul’s Home for Girls changed very little. The organization received a significant gift of 600 acres of land in the back woods of Bedford. They ran from Rocky Lake in the North to Cobequid Road in Sackville in the West, to the top of the hill leading to Hammonds Plains Road, to the area of Bedford Yacht Club – then around the Basin and up through Eaglewood and back to Rocky Lake. Through the 1940s and 1950s small lots were sold. When the Bicentennial highway was built some of the land was purchased by the province. This provided considerable further revenue.
After World War II, along with significant changes taking place in society of the time, St. Paul’s Home for Girls went through a number of changes. A number of operating styles were tried and abandoned. Eventually operations ceased for a period of time. The period from 1970 to 1995 brought many changes. It operated until 1972 as a home for orphaned girls. It changed its name to St. Paul’s Home by an Act of the Legislature passed on June 26, 1982 to better reflect the goals of St. Paul’s Home. The objectives of the organization were redefined and a more aggressive style of management was adopted. By this time St. Paul’s Home had acquired significant capital strength and was in a position to purchase buildings in response to requests from groups who operated programs serving youth in need.
Currently, St. Paul’s Home owns seven homes (including the original Tower Road building) in residential areas, within which specialized programs for troubled youth take place. Most of these homes serve as small group home residences for youth who would otherwise have nowhere to live. Phoenix Centre for Youth is an exception, and consists of a walk in center for street youth who require services and are trying to exit the street.