HomeStart provides affordable housing search services and homelessness prevention services to individuals and families. HomeStart also offers help in money management and training/technical assistance.
Their advocates work with clients from more than 50 shelters and programs to obtain apartments and subsidized housing. They provide support and compassion to help their clients navigate the difficult and complicated process of transitioning from a shelter to permanent housing. Their Housing Search services include several targeted initiatives for homeless veterans and a Rapid Re-Housing Program that administers rental start-up assistance and helps people rapidly move into market rate housing.
After moving into permanent housing, individuals and families face the greatest challenges to maintaining their housing. They help each participant reintegrate into the community; this may include money management programs, life skills training, and more. As of 2013 96% of their stabilization clients are still in housing one year later.
Their Prevention Program utilizes a combination of housing and stabilization knowledge, mediation techniques, legal advocacy, and flexible monetary funds to help high-risk households retain their housing and avoid going to shelters.
The Housing First Program helps disabled individuals move directly from the streets and into permanent housing. HomeStart provides these individuals with wraparound support services as they obtain the life skills, physical and psychological attention they need to maintain housing.
Homeless Set Aside
In partnership with the City of Boston’s 15% homeless set-aside program, HomeStart operates a vacancy clearinghouse that matches people who are homeless with government-funded housing units in Boston. HomeStart conducts outreach to property management companies, streamlines the tenant application process, matches tenants to units, and provides tenants with follow-up support services.
In partnerships with the New England Center for Homeless Veterans, U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, and the Boston Housing Authority, HomeStart’s advocates assist homeless military veterans and veteran families throughout the Greater Boston area in the housing search process and then provide them with upfront financial costs upon move-in.