Homelessness in Boston is a crisis with many sides and many stakeholders. It’s a problem with social, health, and economic implications—and a new, Partners HealthCare-supported initiative launched by Mayor Martin J. Walsh aims to address it on all fronts.
The Boston’s Way Home fund will raise $10 million over the next four years to create 200 units of permanent, supportive housing for men and women who have a history of homelessness. The initiative recognizes the complexity of homelessness and its associated issues, and aims to provide permanent, stable housing while addressing individuals’ psychosocial needs in order to keep them housed. Partners, Massachusetts General Hospital (Mass General) and Brigham Health have given a combined $1 million contribution to this effort.
“The leaders of Mass General, Brigham Health, and Partners HealthCare are supporting Mayor Walsh’s vision to end chronic homelessness because well-designed housing and services are the single most effective way to improve the well-being of these individuals,” says Peter Slavin, MD, President of Mass General. “The Mayor’s plan is among the most important strategies we can deploy to improve the overall health of the Boston community.”
The holistic strategy supported by the fund will help build individuals’ capacity to live independently—and permanently—by connecting them with community-based health care, mental health and substance use disorder care, and employment services. The hope is that the subsidized rental housing in tandem with health and social services will make a measurable impact on Boston’s public health and economic well-being.