Poverty is a leading contributor to homelessness. That’s why St. Francis House provides a variety of basic, rehabilitative, and housing services that are designed to not only alleviate guests’ suffering, but eliminate the underlying causes. Here are some of the ways we tackle the effects of poverty:

THE PROBLEM

In 2013, there were a total of 7,255 homeless people in Boston (up from 6,992 the previous year), according to the Annual Homeless Census.

HOW WE HELP

Since 2009, more than 8,000 people have registered to receive services at St. Francis House. Of those, many come for a hot meal, a shower, or fresh clothing. But nearly half of those registered use our rehabilitative services as well: case management and counseling, housing services, and vocational rehabilitation. These men and women are actively working with St. Francis House to change the trajectory of their lives.

THE PROBLEM

The average cost of a one-bedroom apartment in Greater Boston is $2,054; a two-bedroom apartment averages $2,543. With first-and last-month’s rent, the cost of housing is prohibitive for poor and homeless men and women.

HOW WE HELP

St. Francis House provides 56 units of permanent on-site supported housing. Our Housing Resource Center helps guests who are seeking independent housing. Staff members assist with filling out applications, advocacy, and accessing financial help. We also provide household essentials – pots and pans, silverware, etc. – for those moving into an apartment.

THE PROBLEM

The cost of living in Boston is more than twice the national average. Those earning minimum wage find it difficult to make ends meet.

HOW WE HELP

Our Moving Ahead Program teaches the life-and business-skills necessary for guests to secure and keep employment and housing.

THE PROBLEM

Hunger remains high in Eastern Massachusetts, especially among the working poor and the unemployed, according to the Greater Boston Food Bank.

HOW WE HELP

St. Francis House is the only place in Greater Boston where adults can get a nutritious breakfast and lunch every day of the year.

THE PROBLEM

Those with mental illnesses are at great risk for homelessness but often can’t afford the care they need.

HOW WE HELP

Our Counseling and Mental Health Department provides more than 11,000 counseling sessions a year. Staff are adept at treating those with a dual diagnosis of mental illness and substance abuse.