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Supportive Senior Housing Initiative

The Supportive Senior Housing Initiative seeks to bring some of the benefits of assisted living developments to the residents of the state-aided housing for elderly and handicapped persons.

Program Information

Jointly developed by the Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD) and the Executive Office of Elder Affairs, the program seeks to help seniors maintain their independence and "age in place" by providing better access to supportive services such as case management, 24-hour on-site personal care staff, housekeeping, a daily meals program, medication reminders, transportation, shopping and laundry service to elders within their senior housing complexes.

How it works:

The program is structured so that the following services are available to ALL residents without charge:

  • Case management services for the purpose of needs assessment
  • 24-hour on-site staff available for urgent response (also available to provide scheduled services for qualifying residents)
  • One or two meals daily (usually using the federal Title III meals program)
  • Medication reminders
  • Structured social activities

Other supportive services such as the following are offered free to qualified senior residents based on income and need, or are available for purchase by any resident on a sliding scale:

  • Personal care assistance
  • House cleaning
  • Laundry
  • Grocery shopping
  • Transportation


Currently the program is available to nearly 4,000 households living in state-aided elderly housing in 27 communities throughout Massachusetts.

How to apply:

Persons, who are at least 60 years of age, who are interested in applying should contact the local housing authority in their community of choice. The 27 communities administering the program as of November 2002 are:

  • Amesbury
  • Arlington
  • Billerica
  • Boston
  • Cambridge
  • Chelsea
  • Chicopee
  • Dartmouth
  • Fitchburg
  • Framingham
  • Gardner
  • Gloucester
  • Greenfield
  • Lynn
  • Melrose
  • Methuen
  • Needham
  • New Bedford
  • Peabody
  • Pittsfield
  • Quincy
  • Revere
  • Salem
  • Saugus
  • Somerville
  • Watertown
  • Westfield

Universal applications are also available on the DHCD website.

For further information:

Please contact DHCD's Bureau of Housing Management at (617) 573-1150.