Friends of Boston's Homeless develops and funds innovative, solution-oriented programs to help homeless men, women, and their children move beyond shelter to lead independent lives. In addition, through advocacy and education, Friends seeks to increase the public's awareness and understanding of the homeless. Friends serves to bridge the gap between public sector funding and the current needs of the homeless by providing a vehicle for individuals, businesses, foundations and charitable organizations to be a part of the solution to homelessness. Programs include basic shelter (bed, shower, food), comprehensive supportive services (health and mental health care, case management, substance abuse treatment and counseling), job training and employment services, adult education and literacy, life skills development, and transitional and permanent affordable housing. Shelters associated are Long Island Shelter (located in Boston Harbor) and Woods Mullen Shelter in the South End.
Helping the Homeless Move Beyond Shelter
One of the most effective solutions to homelessness is to help homeless individuals gain independence through education, employment, life skills development, and permanent housing. However, the solution is not as simple as building houses, schools and businesses. Nor is simply providing a bed, shower and a hot meal for the night sufficient for a permanent move beyond homelessness.
Many of the homeless have long histories in the Boston community: they have cycled for years between foster homes, shelters, marginal housing and low-income neighborhoods. Many have also experienced abusive family lives and relationships, and as a result often lack role models. Most have never in their lives known opportunity or stability. All have known repeated failure.
The homeless also often have inadequate education and lack the basic job skills, work experience, social supports and life and coping skills necessary to succeed independently. Lasting success for the homeless is difficult without first receiving assistance in addressing these issues.
Friends addresses these issues with each and every individual we serve, provding them the support and opprtunities to move beyond homelessness