MassHousing Awards $696,995 for Affordable Sober Housing to Support Men, Women and Veterans in Recovery

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Chrystal Kornegay

BOSTON– MassHousing has awarded a total of $696,995 in grant funding to help create or modernize 118 affordable sober housing units in 11 communities across Massachusetts. The awarded projects will serve veterans, and men and women in recovery, including women with children.

The grants come from the Center for Community Recovery Innovations, Inc. (CCRI), a nonprofit subsidiary corporation of MassHousing that helps nonprofits create or preserve affordable sober housing in Massachusetts for individuals in recovery.

To date, CCRI has awarded more than $10 million in grants for the creation or preservation of nearly 2,200 units of substance-free housing, in 50 communities, serving recovery populations that include men, women, families, veterans, the homeless and ex-offenders.

“A safe, healthy and supportive housing environment is a critical component to substance misuse recovery,” said MassHousing Executive Director Chrystal Kornegay. “These grants help to meet the tremendous need for sober housing that is affordable and accessible to individuals who are working to overcome addiction. The projects funded through these awards will strengthen communities across the Commonwealth, by creating and modernizing affordable homes that promote successful recovery, helping individuals in need access the critical support services they need to successfully prevail over substance misuse.”

CCRI grant awards:

Brookview House, Boston, $125,000

MassHousing grant funds will help renovate and preserve 12 affordable sober apartments for women with children. The scope of work includes a new roof, water heater, flooring, kitchen and bathroom renovation, and emergency exit and security system upgrades, and accessible ramp and railing repair.

Casa Esperanza, Boston, $35,970

Grant funds will help rehabilitate and upgrade Familias Unidad, two houses containing 15 single room occupancy (SRO) units and two units for families. The scope of work includes railing, stair, building trim, fascia and gutter repair, and painting.

Dismas House, Oakham, $75,000

Grant funds will help create two new units of sober housing and preserve 12 other units at the Dismas Family Farm, a working farm for residents in recovery.

Fall River Community Housing Resource Board, Fall River, $23,725

Grant funds will provide half the cost of a full roof replacement, preserving 22 units of permanent supportive housing for men and women with co-occurring illness at the Stone Residence. Matching funding is being provided by multiple local banks and foundations.

Father Bill’s and Mainspring, Randolph, $75,000

Grant funds will help construct a building on land donated by Envision Bank, creating 10 new affordable sober efficiency apartments with a first preference for homeless veterans.

Latin America Health Alliance, Worcester, $75,000

Grant funds will provide down payment financing to acquire Casa Colon, creating 11 units of affordable sober SRO housing for men. Primary financing is being provided by Bay State Bank.

Lowell House, Lowell, $75,000

Grant funds will help convert a garage into two new housing units for young men in recovery and add an accessible ramp at Zack’s House, which currently houses seven young men. Enterprise Bank is a financing partner.

Mental Health Association, Springfield, $44,300

Grant funds will help renovate and preserve eight units of sober SRO housing at Avon House for men and women with co-occurring illness. The scope of work includes a new roof, windows and an accessible ramp.

NeighborWorks of Southern Massachusetts, Marshfield, $75,000

Grant funds will help demolish and then construct a new building with eight new affordable sober efficiency apartments with a preference for homeless veterans. The Town of Marshfield is a financing partner.

Self Esteem Boston Educational Institute, Lynn and Leeds, $18,000

Grant funds will deliver weekly recovery support services to women with children in Lynn and women veterans in Leeds, allowing the women to transition to permanent housing.

South Middlesex Non-Profit Housing Corp., Fitchburg, $75,000

Grant funds will help create 14 new units of affordable sober SRO housing for men in recovery. Primary financing is being provided by Avidia Bank.

The Center for Community Recovery Innovations, Inc., issues an annual Request for Proposals (RFP) to solicit projects for funding. The proposals that are selected need to meet CCRI’s current priorities and eligibility categories. The grants are typically used as one-time gap funding for capital projects that increase or improve the stock of affordable sober housing in Massachusetts. Other proposals that provide services for residents in MassHousing-financed rental housing, specifically those that address alcohol and/or drug abuse or addiction, are also considered for funding. CCRI grant recipients must be 501c3 non-profit organizations and matching funds must be provided. All proposals and applicant qualifications are stringently reviewed and vetted by MassHousing.