FAMILIES WITH CHILDREN

State-Funded Resources for Families: Emergency Assistance Shelter, the HomeBASE Short-Term Housing Assistance Program, and educational programs

Shelters for Families with Children

If you are experiencing homelessness and have a child under the age of 21 or you are pregnant, you and your family may be eligible for placement in a family shelter. The vast majority of family shelter spaces are administered by the Massachusetts Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD), through their Emergency Assistance (EA) program.

To learn more about how to access EA shelter, follow these links to access the 2019 Emergency Assistance Advocacy Guide from Massachusetts Law Reform Institute (MLRI).

To see if your family meets the income eligibility guidelines for EA and HomeBASE, please see the 2020 income guidelines (PDF) and the image below. The EA and HomeBASE income eligibility standards for applicants are based on 115% of the federal poverty guidelines. For families already in EA, DHCD determines eligibility for ongoing benefits using the standard of 200% FPL.

Applications:

Please note that you must apply for EA shelter through DHCD, and cannot directly access an EA shelter placement by contacting the shelters linked below.

*Applications during the COVID-19 state of emergency: During the COVID-19 pandemic, families only can apply for shelter resources by phone, as local offices anticipate being closed to the public for the remainder of 2020. To apply by phone, call DHCD’s toll-free number: 1-866-584-0653.*

Applications during non-pandemic times: For a list of local offices across the state where you can apply, please click here and select the city/town you consider your home community or where you are staying. DHCD is promoting the use of a telephonic application process as the number of in-person application sites has been reduced. To apply by phone, call DHCD’s toll-free number: 1-866-584-0653. If you are unable to get to a DHCD office in person and have problems applying by phone, you can call DHCD’s Central Office at 617-573-1106 to ask for assistance.

*Please also note that these lists may not be comprehensive. If you are a shelter provider and would like to add or update your listing, please email kelly@mahomeless.org.

*Indicates that community rooms are available

Bridge House
24 Baker Street
Lynn, MA 01902
781-593-3898
Total Capacity: 11 families.
Services: Advocacy; counseling by referral; medical care; day programs; transportation.
Restrictions: Participation in chores is required.  Curfew: Weekdays: 10pm; Weekend: 12 am.
Admissions Process:   Must have a referral from the Department of Housing and Community Development and be eligible for an Emergency Assistance bed. 

Cambridge YWCA
7 Temple
Cambridge, MA 02139
617-491-6050
Total Capacity: 103 single rooms for transitional housing program; 10 families of women and children for family shelter program. 
Services: Advocacy; referral; some clothing; counseling. 
Languages:  Spanish; Haitian; Bengali. 
Restrictions: Women only, boys up to the age of 12 allowed.
Admissions Process: Must be eligible for Emergency Assistance. 

Children’s Services of Roxbury
504 Dudley St
Roxbury, MA 02119
617-989-1093
Total Capacity: 105 beds (among families) in the Scattered Sites and 21 beds (among families) in the congregate location.
Services: Advocacy; case management; housing search; education programs. 
Languages:  Spanish; Haitian Creole. 
Restrictions: No history of violent behavior; no head of household over the age of 21.
Admissions process:  Must have a referral from the Department of Housing and Community Development and be eligible for Emergency Assistance. 

Casa Nueva Vida
53 Glen Road
PO Box 2115
Jamaica Plain, MA 02130
617-524-6332
Total Capacity: 17 families.
Services: Advocacy; counseling; some clothing; education & English classes. 
Language: Spanish. 
Restrictions: Curfew: Sun- Thurs. 9pm; Fri-Sat 10pm. 
Referral: Must have a referral from the Department of Housing and Community Development and be eligible for Emergency Assistance.

Crittenton Women’s Union
10 Perthshire Road
Brighton, MA 02135
617-782-7600
Total Capacity: 58 beds (among families) in the congregate shelter; 59 beds (among families) in the community based shelter.
Services: Advocacy; counseling; 3 meals/day; clothing if available; handicap accessibility; van transportation (to jobs). 
Languages: Spanish; Haitian Creole. 
Restrictions: Curfews vary depending on location.
Admissions Process:  Must have a referral from the Department of Housing and Community Development or the Department of Transitional Assistance and be eligible for Emergency Assistance. 

Crossroads Family Shelter
56 Havre Street
East Boston, MA 02128
617-567-5926
Total Capacity: 15 beds for families.
Services: Case management; housing search; meals; clothing; weekly visiting nurse; play space; workshops. 
Languages:  Spanish. 
Restrictions: No drug or alcoholic use.
Curfew: Sun-Thurs 9 pm; Fri-Sat 11:30 pm. 
Admissions Process: Must have a referral from the Department of Housing and Community Development. 

Cross Street Family Shelter
59 Cross Street
P.O. Box 440436
Somerville, MA 02144
617-776-6661
Total Capacity: 5 families. 
Services: Advocacy; 3 communal meals (families cook their own meals); clothing if available; access to medical care at a nearby clinic.
Languages:  Spanish; Creole.
Curfew: Sun- Thurs 9 pm; Fri-Sat 10 pm.
Admissions Process:: Must have a referral from the Department of Housing and Community Development and be eligible for Emergency Assistance. 

Families in Transition
316 Huntington Ave.
Boston, MA 02115
617-927-8290
Total Capacity: 22 beds among families.  
Services: Advocacy; handicap accessibility; medical care through Health Care for the Homeless; public transportation.
Curfew: Sun-Thurs 9 pm; Fri-Sat 11 pm.
Admissions Process: Must have a referral from the Department of Housing and Community Development and be eligible for Emergency Assistance. 

Hildebrand Family Self-Help Center, Inc. 
614 Massachusetts Avenue, 3rd Floor 
Cambridge, MA 02139 
617-491-5752 
Total capacity: 113 families in Congregate and Scattered Sites shelter units in Boston and Cambridge 
Services: Information and Referral, Case Management, Housing Search and Stabilization; Life Skills workshops and Children’s Programs depending on availability of resources. 
Restrictions: Families with children only. 
Languages: Spanish; French; Haitian Creole; Cape Verdean Creole. 
Admission:  Must be eligible for Emergency Assistance and must be referred by the Department of Housing and Community Development. 

Mary’s House / Bristol Lodge Family Shelter
62 Church Street
Waltham, MA 02154
781-647-9957
Total Capacity: 8 families.
Services: Advocacy; referral; food; clothing; handicap accessibility; medical care by referral; day program; open 24 hours; transportation access; cook own meals.
Languages: French. 
Restrictions: Sobriety. 
Curfew: Sun-Thurs. 9pm; Fri-Sat 11pm. 
Admissions Process: Must have a referral from the Department of Transitional Assistance and be eligible for Emergency Assistance.

Metropolitan Boston Housing Partnership
125 Lincoln Street, 5th floor
Boston, MA 02111
617-859-0400
Total Capacity: N/A
Services: Rental vouchers, financial assistance, emergency assistance, eviction prevention, advocacy; counseling; housing search, workshops and trainings, inspectional services and property owner resources. Languages: Vietnamese; Haitian Creole; Cape Verdean Creole; Portuguese; Cantonese; Mandarin; Toisanese; Spanish. 
Admissions Process: Must have a referral from the Department of Housing and Community Development. For rental vouchers and some homelessness prevention programs; for all other services, contact their Housing Consumer Education Center at (617) 425-6700 or ResourceLine@mbhp.org.

Nazareth House*
91 Regent Street
Roxbury, MA 02119
617-541-0100
Community Rooms: 3.  
Total Capacity: 7 DTA families (10 total including community rooms). 
Services: Advocacy; counseling; transportation. 
Restrictions: At least one family member must be HIV positive; 2-year limit. 
Admissions Process: There is a waiting list specific to the community room. Must have a referral from the Department of Transitional Assistance and be eligible for Emergency Assistance.

Project Hope
550 Dudley Street
Roxbury, MA 02119
617-442-1880
Total Capacity: 8 families; generally only accept women and children. 
Services:  Counseling; cook own meals; referrals; clothing if available; Spanish; handicap accessible; visiting nurse; day program, job training, social supports, and workshops.
Restrictions:  Sobriety; no history of drug addiction or domestic violence; generally no males over 14 years old, but male children decided on case by case basis. 
Admissions Process:  Must have a referral from the Department of Housing and Community Development for Emergency Assistance beds.
Website: http://www.prohope.org/

Queen of Peace*
401 Quincy Street
Boston, MA 02125
617-288-4182
Community Rooms:  11
Total Capacity:  11 beds among families of women and children. 
Services:  Dinner & breakfast; clothing if available.
Restrictions:  Only women and children, no males over the age of 3; must not be heavily reliant on medications, drugs, or alcohol; must be in at 4 pm & out by 9 am. 
Admissions Process:  Must have a referral from a social service agency. 
Website: http://health-centers.findthebest.com/l/8343/Queen-of-Peace-Shelter

Re-Vision House
38 Fabyan Street
Dorcester, MA 02124
617-825-8642
Total Capacity: 22 beds among women and children. 
Services: Advocacy; counseling; community kitchen & pantry; medical care through Health Care for Homeless; transportation; storage facilities, stabilization services, day care. 
Languages:  French Creole. 
Restrictions: Sobriety (random drug testing); women & children only.
Admissions Process:  Must have a referral from the Department of Transitional Assistance or the Department of Housing and Community Development and be eligible for Emergency Assistance. Client-based referral for those are between the ages of 18-21. Pregnant women above this age are also eligible. 
Website: http://health-centers.findthebest.com/l/4210/Revision-House

St. Ambrose Family Inn
25 Leonard Street
Dorchester, MA 02122
617-288-7675
Total Capacity: 19 families.
Services: Advocacy; counseling by referral; food provided; clothing if available; access to medical care; after school program for children; transportation for housing only.
Language: Spanish; Haitian/Creole.
Admissions Process: Must have a referral from the Department of Housing and Community Development and be eligible for Emergency Assistance. 

Margaret’s House
90 Cushing Ave.
Dorchester, MA 02125
617-436-3944 (hotline)
617-436-8600 (intake center)
Total Capacity: 32 beds among women and children. 
Services: Advocacy; counseling; referral; clothing; prenatal care; onsite nurse. 
Restrictions: Women & children only; must be pregnant or parenting; boys up to the age of 12. 
Admissions Process: Must be eligible for Emergency Assistance. 

Sojourner House
85 Rockland Street
Roxbury, MA 02119
617-442-0590
Total Capacity: 9 families.
Services: Advocacy; counseling; food pantry; clothing; handicap accessibility; medical care through Health Care for the Homeless; day program; transportation for housing appointments only.
Languages:  Spanish; Haitian Creole. 
Restrictions: Sobriety.
Referral: Must have a referral from the Department of Housing and Community Development and be eligible for Emergency Assistance. 

Centerboard
16 City Hall Square
Lynn, MA 01905
781-598-9417
Total Capacity: 77 beds for families among the scattered services. 
Services: Advocacy; counseling by referral; food by referral; clothing if available; not handicapped accessible but will be soon; transportation for housing appointments and emergencies only. 
Language: Spanish. 
Restrictions: Sobriety; financial stability. 
Admissions Process: Must be eligible for Emergency Assistance.  

Temporary Home for Women and Children
41 New Chardon Street
Boston, MA 02114
617-720-3611
Total Capacity: 15 families.
Services: Advocacy, counseling; 3 meals/day; limited Spanish; handicap accessible; medical care day program; transportation; clothing if available.
Restrictions: Non-EA eligible; women & children only; no drugs or alcohol; income restriction. 
Admissions Process:  Referral needed from Department of Children & Family. 

Housing Families
254 Broadway
Malden, MA 02148
781-324-1303 (site)
350 Cross St.
Malden, MA 02148
781 322-9119 (main)
Total Capacity: 54 beds among families.
Services: Advocacy; referral for counseling; cook own food; clothing; access to medical care; workshops & support groups; transportation to housing appointments only.
Languages: Spanish; Creole; Portuguese. 
Restrictions: Sobriety; no active substance abuse. 
Admissions Process: Must have a referral from the Department of Housing and Community Development and be eligible for Emergency Assistance. 

* Community Room Available

Medway Family Shelter (SMOC)
17 Holliston Street
Medway, MA 02053
508-533-1487
Total Capacity: 12 beds among families. 
Services: Counseling; 3 meals; some clothing; handicap accessible, referrals. 
Languages: Spanish. 
Restrictions: Requires sobriety.
Admissions Process:  Requires a referral from the Department of Housing and Community Development. 

Pathways Family Shelter (SMOC)
248 Edgell Road
Framingham, MA 01701
508-879-5047
Total Capacity: 13 beds among teen families. 
Services:  Advocacy; counseling community kitchen; food 3 meals/day clothing by referral; limited transportation; storage facilities. 
Restrictions:  Only accepting teen families; sobriety is required on the premises; a 12 am curfew is in effect on weekends. 
Admissions Process:  Requires a referral from the Department of Transitional Assistance to get an Emergency Assistance bed. 

South Middlesex Opportunity Council
7 Bishop Street
Framingham, MA 01702
508-620-2623
Total Capacity: 30 beds among families in scattered sites.
Services: Advocacy; counseling; referrals. 
Language: Spanish. 
Waiting list: Yes.
Admissions Process: Must have a referral from the Department of Transitional Assistance and be eligible for Emergency Assistance. 

Family Promise MetroWest*
13 Common Street, Natick, MA  01760
P.O. Box 847
508-318-4820
Community Rooms: Only in the day for the 4 families within the program. 
Total Capacity: 4 families.
Services: Meals; referrals; case management; transportation. 
Admissions Process: There is a wait list. People can self-refer, or obtain a referral from a social service agency. 

*Indicates that community rooms are available.

Carolina Hill Shelter
728 Main Street
Marshfield, MA 02050
781-837-1377
Total Capacity: 16 families.
Services: Advocacy; counseling by referral; 3 meals a day; handicapped accessible.
Restrictions: Must meet Emergency Assistance guidelines.
Admissions Process: Must be eligible for Emergency Assistance and have a referral from the Department of Housing and Community Development.

Carriage House
294 Old Main Road
N. Falmouth, MA 02556
508-564-6485
Total Capacity: 8 families of women and children (approximately 14 people maximum). 
Services: Advocacy; counseling; 3 meals a day; handicap accessibility; storage facilities.
Restrictions: No males over 12; shelter is only for young women and first time mothers. 
Admissions Process: Must be eligible for Emergency Assistance and have a referral from the Department of Housing and Community Development. 

Conway House (Brockton Coalition for the Homeless)
14 E. Grove Street
Middleboro, MA 02346
508-946-8505
(offices at Main Spring house 508-587-5441)
Total Capacity: 12 families.
Services: Advocacy; counseling by referral; emergency food; community kitchen; clothing if necessary; handicap accessibility; medical care nearby; day program. 
Admissions Process: Must be eligible for Emergency Assistance and have a referral from the Department of Housing and Community Development.

David Jon Louison Child Center
137 Newbury Street
Brockton, MA 02301
508-584-4315
Total Capacity: 23 families. 
Services: Advocacy; counseling; food pantry when necessary; clothing if necessary; handicapped accessible; access to medical care; day programs; transportation for housing appointments only.
Languages: Spanish; Portuguese; Haitian Creole.
Restrictions: Must be sober while on premises. 
Admissions Process: Must be eligible for Emergency Assistance and have a referral from the Department of Housing and Community Development. 

Faith Home Share – Friends of the Homeless of the South Shore*
48 Sea Street
N. Weymouth, MA 02191
781-340-1604
Total Capacity: 8 families.
Services: Advocacy; referral resources.
Admissions Process: Must be eligible for Emergency Assistance and have a referral from the Department of Housing and Community Development. Those interested in community rooms will be referred to two local churches. 

Family Resource Center 
11 Peck Street
Attleboro, MA 02703
508-226-5722
Total Capacity: 7 families. 
Services: Advocacy; counseling; budgeting; 3 meals + snacks; clothing; medical clinic; transportation. 
Restrictions: No independent males older than 17 allowed; parents must be 18 year or older. 
Admissions Process: Must be eligible for Emergency Assistance and have a referral from the Department of Housing and Community Development. 

Pilgrim’s Hope
149 Bishop’s Highway
Kingston, MA 02364
781-582-2010
Total Capacity: 10 families.
Services: Food pantry and Fair Programs. 
Restrictions: Must be over the age of 18 when not in a family. 
Admissions Process: Must be eligible for Emergency Assistance and have a referral from the Department of Housing and Community Development

Sisters of Charity
556 County Street
New Bedford, MA 02740
508-997-7347
Total Capacity: 10 families of women and children.
Services: Food & clothing.
Restrictions: Must be in by 4 pm and out by 8 am; no boys over age 5; 3 week time limit; no drugs or alcohol; women & children only.
Admissions Process: Must be eligible for Emergency Assistance and have a referral from the Department of Housing and Community Development. 

*Community Rooms Available

Friendly House*
87 Elm Street
Worcester 01609
508-792-1799
Community Rooms: 3
Total Capacity: 13 beds for men and women.
Services: Advocacy; referrals; handicap access.
Admissions Process: Individuals can self-refer for community rooms; otherwise, referrals through the Department of Housing and Community Development are needed. People must call back to check for availability.

Youville House
133 Granite Street
Worcester, MA 01604
508-753-3084
Total Capacity: 12 families
Services: Advocacy; counseling; 3 meals; housing search. 
Restrictions: Requires sobriety on premises. 
Admissions Process: Must have a referral from the Department of Housing and Community Development and be eligible for Emergency Assistance. 

(This is list is in the process of being updated. Thank you for your patience.)

*Community room available

A Family’s Place
177 Sargeant Street
Holyoke, MA 01040
413-536-2787
Total Capacity: 64 families.
Services: Advocacy; referrals for clothing; medical care; counseling. 
Languages: Spanish. 
Restrictions: Requires sobriety on premises.
Admissions Process:  Requires a referral from the Department of Housing and Community Development.

The following are family shelters with rooms that are available for families who are not eligible for Emergency Assistance through the Department of Housing and Community Development.  There is a high demand for these rooms and thus they are often full.  It is recommended to call them directly to determine availability. 

Greater Boston

Queen of Peace
401 Quincy Street
Boston, MA 02125
617-288-4182
Community Rooms:  11
Total Capacity:  11 beds among families of women and children.
Services:  Dinner & breakfast; clothing if available.
Restrictions:  Only women and children; no males over the age of 3; must not be heavily reliant on medications, drugs, or alcohol; must be in at 4 pm & out by 9 am.
Referral:  Must be called/referred by an agency.

Nazareth House
91 Regent Street
Roxbury, MA 02119 .
617-541-0100
Community Rooms: 3 
Total Capacity: 7 DTA families (10 total including community room)
Wait List: Yes.
Services: Advocacy; counseling; transportation.
Restrictions: At least one family member must be HIV positive; 2-year limit.
Admissions Process: There is a waiting list specific to the community room. Must have a referral from the Department of Transitional Assistance and be eligible for Emergency Assistance. 

North Shore/Merrimack Valley

Inn Between
25 Holten Street
Peabody, MA 01960
978-532-2372
Community Rooms:  1
Total Capacity:  One family, no more than 4 persons
Waiting list: Yes. 
Services:  Advocacy; case management; referrals to other social services,
Restrictions:  No alcohol; no drugs; no violence. 
Curfew: weekdays: 9 pm; weekends: 11 pm.
Admissions Process:  Department of Transitional Assistance for Emergency Assitance bed; self-referral for community room. 

Lazarus House Ministries, Inc. 
48 Holly Street
Lawrence, MA 01842
978-689-8575 (x5225)
Community Rooms:  7
Total Capacity: 41 beds and seven cribs
Services:  Advocacy; limited counseling; 3 meals/day; clothing; medical and dental once a week. 
Restrictions: Night shelter only; in at 5 pm and out at 8 am; must be sober while in facility; no boys over 14 year old. 
Admissions Process: Can be referred by: social workers; Department of Transitional Assitance; places of worship; hospitals; self. 

Southeastern Massachusetts

Faith Home Share – Friends of the Homeless of the South Shore
48 Sea Street
N. Weymouth, MA 02191
781-340-1604
Total Capacity: 8 families
Services: Advocacy; referral resources
Admissions Process: Must be eligible for Emergency Assistance and have a referral from the Department of Housing and Community Development. Those interested in community rooms will be referred to two local churches. 

Metro West

Family Promise Metrowest
13 Common Street
P.O. Box 847
Natick, MA  01760
508-318-4820
Community Rooms: Only in the day for the 4 families within the program  
Total Capacity: 4 families. 
Services:  Meals; referrals; case management; transportation
Admissions Process:  There is a wait list.  People can self-refer, or obtain a referral from a social service agency. 

Central Massachusetts

Abby’s House
52 High Street
Worcester, MA 01609
508-756-5486
Community Rooms:  10
Total Capacity: 10
Referral:  Self.

Friendly House
87 Elm Street
Worcester 01609
508-792-1799
Community Rooms: 2
Wait List:  No, persons must call back to check the status of open beds.
Total Capacity: 13 beds for men and women.
Services: Advocacy; referrals; handicap access.
Referral: DHCD; self for community beds.

Western Massachusetts
None known.

* Interfaith Hospitality Networks in Massachusetts


Interfaith Hospitality Network of Greater Worcester
91 June St.
Worcester, MA 01602
508-755-2212
Community rooms: All
Total capacity: 6 rooms
Family shelter accepting women, men and couples with children
Wait list: Yes
Services: Wide variety of services offered from basic needs to case management.
Restrictions: No active substance abuse or domestic violence
Admissions process: Non EA eligible families; individuals can self-refer

Montachusett Interfaith Hospitality Network, Inc.
758 Main Street
Leominster, MA 01453
978-466-1704
Community Rooms: Yes
Total Capacity: 5 families
Wait List: Yes
Length of Stay: Short-term
Services: Emergency shelter, food, clothing and intensive case management. Mandatory weekly educational trainings on various life skills topics, such as resume building, interviewing techniques, dressing for interviews, healthy eating on a budget, landlord/tenant rights & responsibilities, parenting, navigating of insurance systems, stress management, etc. Trauma sensitive environment, with yoga classes, therapy animals, a literacy program, a well-stocked playroom, two outside playgrounds, and expansive lawn in which to play.
Restrictions:  Families with children, of various configurations. Must not be eligible for EA shelter services. Must be drug and alcohol free, and willing to work toward self-sufficiency/permanent housing.
Referral: Self or community referral. MIHN is generally full. For a family to be placed on the waiting list or to be considered for intake, the family must inquire directly by calling MIHN.

Family Promise Metrowest
13 Common Street
P.O. Box 847
Natick, MA  01760
508-318-4820
Community Rooms:  Only in the day for the 4 families within the program 
Total Capacity: 4 families
Services: Meals; referrals; case management; transportation.
Referral:  There is a wait list. Self; Social service agency.

Family Promise North Shore Boston, Inc.
330 Rantoul St.
Beverly, MA 01915
(978) 922-0787
Wait List: Yes
Services: Meals; temporary shelter; day center with showers, washing machines, quiet room, computer; individual case management.
Restrictions: Current or recent alcohol and/or substance abuse, immediate fleeing of domestic violence situation, criminal history, severe and untreated mental health diagnosis. 

**Must be able to live in a communal setting.

Information on the 2012 (FY’13) Emergency Assistance regulation changes (still in effect as of September 2020)

EA data from DHCD: Historical caseload data, FY’11 to the present and sample monthly report 

HomeBASE Diversion and Rehousing Assistance for Families with Children 

If you are experiencing homelessness and have a child under the age of 21 or you are pregnant, your family may be eligible for assistance through the Department of Housing and Community Development’s HomeBASE program. HomeBASE funding can be used to help you pay for first month’s rent, last month’s rent, a security deposit, an ongoing shallow rent subsidy, etc. 

HomeBASE information from the Department of Housing and Community Development

Education of Children Experiencing Homelessness

To learn more about the educational rights of children and youth experiencing homelessness under the federal McKinney-Vento Act, please download the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education poster pictured below, and click here to see a helpful summary from our colleagues at the Massachusetts Law Reform Institute. These rights include rights related to enrollment and transportation. To learn more about our budget campaign related to education transportation for these students, see our FY’19 budget fact sheet. Updated guidance from the U.S. Department of Education can be found here (added July 2016).