Guests always say that housing is their number one need, and at St. Francis House we meet that need through our affordable housing.
Housing is the first priority for individuals looking to stabilize their safety, wellness, income, and behavioral health. We provide a complete continuum of services from housing navigation to housing stabilization. We are also providers of a growing portfolio of permanent supportive housing to individuals who are exiting homelessness.
At St. Francis House, we believe that everyone has the right to dignified housing. Secure housing is essential to maintaining behavioral health and quality of life. However, a lack of safe and affordable residential space in and around Boston makes the housing search incredibly difficult, particularly for those with unstable mental health, substance abuse, or criminal records. We provide on demand consultation and connection to services in order to determine a housing pathway for a guest. We collaborate with the City of Boston on all initiatives to house chronically homeless and the most vulnerable individuals of our community.
Our services provide individualized housing search, connection to subsidized opportunities, advocacy, move-in assistance, short-medium term subsidy, homelessness prevention, transitional housing, permanent supportive housing, and housing stabilization. We integrate our housing services with our on-site behavioral health and workforce development programs to maximize the support the residents need to be successful in their independence.
On our top floors, we operate supportive housing units located in the same building as our full range of service offerings. Residents benefit from the assistance of on-site housing stabilization case managers who provide individualized support to help residents live successfully in permanent housing long-term. They collaborate with residents to support their overall well-being and recovery, connect to community resources, stabilize income sources, and develop the life skills required for community reintegration and independence.
The Residential Housing Services Program, Next Step, is on floors 7, 8, 9, and 10 of our 39 Boylston St. location and offers congregate style, single-occupancy rooms for 56 low-income men and women who have experienced homelessness. This integrated model enables residents to utilize all of our services, from meals and clothing, to counseling and art therapy, without leaving campus. These units come fully equipped and furnished. The shared spaces promote community and wellbeing with computers, libraries, events, television rooms, access to public transportation, laundry, fitness rooms, and resident meetings.
Across the street from St. Francis House is The Union at 48 Boylston. Formerly the Boston Young Men’s Christian Union, this historic building has been completely redeveloped through a partnership between St. Francis House and the Planning Office for Urban Affairs of the Archdiocese of Boston to provide much needed affordable housing in the community. The completed development includes units to serve people who have experienced homelessness and others with very modest incomes. Twenty-six of the units are reserved for individuals earning less than 30% of the area median income.
Residential Housing Services accepts applications. However, many of our units are dedicated to individuals who are experiencing chronic homelessness (as defined by HUD) and require that the individual be directly referred through the City of Boston’s Coordinated Access System. We are a City of Boston funded provider who assess and connect our guests to opportunities with an on-site, on-demand model at our day shelter.