Assistance programs Boston and Suffolk County Massachusetts.
Find immediate financial assistance in Suffolk County MA. Grant money can be used for paying household expenses including back rent, utility bills, security deposits, or transportation for work. Charities in the greater Boston area also offer free stuff, including heating oil; Christmas toys; gas vouchers, winter clothes; bus passes; or school supplies. Get financial help near you in Boston MA and Suffolk County below.
The low income, seniors and struggling families in Boston Suffolk County can also receive assistance to stop a foreclosure or enter into a homeless prevention program for their housing needs. Households can also find how to stop a shut off of heat, electric or utility service. Or get low cost loans for buying a home, making a car payment or paying for housing in the Suffolk County region.
Get grant money and financial resources from ABCD community action
The Action for Boston Community Development (ABCD) offers Boston and Suffolk County residents several ways to get financial assistance. Get hardship funds with bills, rent, housing help, health care, and even help finding employment. Call 617-357-6012 or 617-348-6000 to learn more about resources and programs they offer, or to apply.
- Heating and fuel assistance is offered to help keep low income and/or elderly households warm. The ABCD Fuel Assistance program helps thousands of households (including renters) in Boston, Newton, and Brookline as well as across Suffolk County pay their home electric during the heating season. There are income criteria in place. Applications are accepted from November through March at ABCD's Central Office or at any of ABCD location. Learn more on stop a shut off of heat or utility service.
- Or try the community action agency free Energy conservation program to reduce utility bills. Homeowners can save anywhere from 25-35 percent on winter heating bills. Get free wall and attic insulation, air sealing, weather stripping, windows, and heating system repairs all help low-income households or seniors.
- Weatherization from ABCD: This free energy saving program was created to help keep the heat in your home, and therefore lower utility bills. Get extra insulation of walls and attics and weather-stripping throughout. The total dollar amount of upgrades can even be higher, as through a NGRID Gas sponsored weatherization program, those with gas heat may receive additional energy conservation measures totaling $4,500.
- Heating System Repairs / Replacements Program: Replacement or repairs of heating systems in emergency no-heat situations are possible for most homeowners and, in some cases, even tenants of apartments. ABCD can provide free services to those in need. Replacement of a heating system will be considered for inefficient or inoperable boilers or furnaces. Find free heaters for low income families.
- Eversource (NStar) Conservation Action Program (NCAP): The Action for Boston Community Development also partners with Eversource to help low and moderate income homeowners. Get help with reducing their electrical usage, test lighting fixtures and refrigerators for efficiency and replace those units that are inefficient.
- Employment, debt and money management: ABCD offers workshops, classes, computer labs and other resources to help families gain stability. This is done to help clients save and/or increase their income or education. Find information on increasing income from gig jobs or working from home.
- The ABCD Health Services Departmentis strongly committed to providing health care services. The programs are used to maintain the health (mental, physical, dental, etc.) of low and moderate income residents, kids, the unisnured and immigrants of the greater Boston area. Get referrals to community-based clinics and public health disease prevention and health promotion programs.
- Rent and housing assistance is also provided. ABCD also assists walk-in customers and will respond to referrals of families and individuals who are facing evictions. Grant money will help tenants with an eviction notice as well as single moms or dads in Suffolk County. Apply for money when behind in their rent or utility bills, or living in substandard housing, or doubled up and taking shelter with other families.
- Action for Boston Community Development (ABCD) has various offices around Boston and Suffolk County, and they are listed below. Each location is staffed with highly trained counselors who can help individuals apply for financial assistance, grants, and other resources. The goal is to help people pay their bills, rent, and housing in the short term, and ensure individuals gain longer term self-sufficiency.
- 565 Warren St, Boston, MA 02121, dial (617) 442-5900
- 406 Cambridge Street Allston, MA 02134, telephone (617) 783-1485
- 21 Meridian Street, Boston, Massachusetts, 02128, telephone (617) 567-8857
- 315 Centre St #11, Jamaica Plain, MA 02130. Phone (617) 522-5533
- 23A Moulton St, Boston, MA 02129, main number (617) 241-8866
- 535 River Street, Mattapan, Massachusetts, 02126, call (617) 298-2045
- One Michelangelo Street, Boston, MA, 02113, (617) 523-8125
- 424 West Broadway, Boston, MA, 02127, main number (617) 269-5160
- 554 Columbus Avenue, Boston, Massachusetts, 02118, call (617) 267-7400
Many other programs are offered. There are employment services, mortgage relief, information on free cars for low-income people in Boston MA and more. Call them or stop by for details on emergency programs. Or learn more on programs from Action for Boston Community Development.
Another local community action agency is the Community Action Programs Inter-City, Inc., which can be reached at (617) 884 - 6130. While they cover all of Boston, they have specific assistance programs targeted at Chelsea, Revere, East Boston, and Winthrop. Referrals and support is provided to other towns as well.
- They offer qualified individuals with free energy conservation improvements, weatherization programs, and. In some cases the funds will come in the form of a loan and in others it is a partial payment.
- Other community action funds provide rent payment assistance, housing search and information, as well as mortgage help or foreclosure prevention services. Or get emergency funds for electric bills, gas, or light expenses as well as financial counseling. More on Community Action Programs Inter-City.
Financial assistance for mortgages, rent, energy bills, and other expenses
Catholic Charities of Greater Boston is a leading non-profit charity/church organization of the Archdiocese of Boston. The agency helps low income, single mothers, migrants and working poor throughout the area, including Dorchester, Somerville, Boston Massachusetts, as well as Dorchester and Roxbury. There are also resale, thrift store for gently used items. More on thrift stores.
- Assistance programs, resources and services offered by the non-profit Catholic Charity include the following. There is emergency rent payment assistance, food pantries, or mortgage help. Or get rental deposit assistance or money for heating and electric bill. There are also free clothes for the homeless, immigrants or families in poverty as well as gas bill payment assistance, immigration/naturalization legal services, and general free legal assistance. Dial (617) 506 - 6600, or read more Boston Catholic Charities.
The Salvation Army has various offices and locations around Suffolk County, including the South End, Chelsea, Pittsfield, and other spots. They offer a host of assistance programs to Boston and Suffolk area families including those below. They focus on low-income parents with kids, the homeless in the Boston area and unemployed.
- Food assistance - Free food, groceries, and nutritious items are available at pantries and soup kitchen.
- Rent and mortgage payment assistance - Avoid an eviction or foreclosure using Salvation Army emergency financial help.
- Transportation help - There are free vouchers for the MBTA or gas, if the client needs transportation for a job.
- Help for utility bills - Funds for paying your heating, gas, and water bills. The Salvation Army will also provide free AC or fans during the summer, as resources allow, with a focus on senior citizens or the disabled.
- Health care - Vouchers for prescription medications and other medical needs
- Shelter - They have an onsite shelter and offer information on low income housing. In some cases, when the Suffolk County shelters are full, free motel vouchers are available. Find more on Boston low income housing.
- Basic needs - This includes free Christmas toys or meals (Adopt a Family), Thanksgiving dinner, winter clothes, back to school supplies, free furniture and more.
Call one of the agencies at 617-542-5420 to learn more. Or read more on Boston, Suffolk County, and Cambridge area Salvation Army assistance programs.
Allston / Brighton APAC provides fuel assistance and in some cases rental assistance. They also have job programs, employment counseling, social service, and other aid. Phone (617) 783 - 1485. Find additional help for heating bills, including how to get free heating oil.
Ecumenical Social Action Committee, Inc. (ESAC) provides provides home rehabilitation programs, including window repairs, plumbing, and similar updates. There is also senior housing information and referral, free legal aid, counseling, and more. They can also help with furnace or roof repairs. Click here to find additional legal aid programs in Massachusetts. Address is 434 Jamaicaway, Jamaica Plain, MA 02130. Call (617) 524-2555.
Department of Housing and Community Development – This government agency runs the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP). This federal government created program offers funding to senior citizens, disabled, and the low income. Grant money pay for heating oil or fuel, electric bills and also a furnace or HVAC repair. The address is 100 Cambridge Street, Suite # 300, Boston, MA, 02114, phone (800) 632 - 8175
FamilyAid is a state supported and city of Boston organization that focuses on housing and homeless issues. The staff from the agency will first try to help stop evictions by referring residents to emergency rental or grant programs. They also operate Family Shelters and low income apartments in the Boston area, including private rental homes that take people with no credit or past eviction.
- A collaborative from the organization also works with individuals to rehouse them. There may be information on resources to pay security deposits as well as self-sufficiency and job training coordinated. More on FamilyAid Boston housing programs.
Non-profit funds for paying back rent and security deposits may be available, based on government funding and donations to partners such as the United Way in Suffolk County. Any type of grant is normally focused on tenants with an eviction notice and some source of income. Any rental assistance is first come and served. Get information on additional rental programs in Boston.
Energy bill assistance programs operate across the county. Of particular emphasis is assisting low income families and senior citizens with paying their heating and natural gas bills. Several non-profit agencies and government programs operate in Boston and across Suffolk County. Programs range from grants and credits to be applied to your account to free energy conservation programs. Learn about Heating System Repairs and Replacement, Fuel Assistance, money for heating oil, and much more. Continue with Boston heating bill assistance.
- Discounted heating oil is offered in the Boston region and county. While it is not free, you may be able to save significantly on your heating oil by joining a cooperative formed by the Green Energy Mass Energy Consumers Alliance (phone ((617) 397-5199), or one formed by Oil Buying Network (800) 649 - 7473. All of these organizations offer members lower prices on their energy bill needs and heating oil. Click here to learn more on these heating oil buying network groups.
Assistance from charity organizations - Over 10 centers are located around the greater Suffolk County and Boston Massachusetts area. Programs are administered by the Salvation Army, Catholic Charities and other agencies. Financial assistance for bills and expenses can be provided regardless of someone’s religion, nationality or background. However income restrictions may be in place. Find more Boston charities.
Massachusetts Center for Native American Awareness, Inc. – The non-profit organization provides funds for free food, temporary shelter, electric and heating bills to Native American families and individuals. The programs focus on assistance that may be needed through the winter season or an emergency basis. There are even programs such as free firewood to heat a home. Locate other charities for free firewood.
- Native Americans can get other items too, including school supplies or food boxes. In addition, during the holiday season, MCNAA may be able to mail gift certificates to needy individuals and families so they can use them at grocery stores. Call (617) 642 - 1683
Massachusetts Department of Veterans Services offers homeless prevention as part of Residential Assistance to Families in Transition (RAFT). Funds can help veterans with paying a security deposit, first/last month's rent, or even utility start-up costs. Call the Boston agency at (617) 210 - 5480.
- New England Center for Homeless Veterans – Provides assistance to homeless veterans or those facing eviction. They may receive medical care and/or mental health services. There is also information on job training, employment and help for locating permanent housing.
The Supportive Services for Veteran Families (SSVF) provides housing search assistance in Suffolk County. Other aid includes financial assistance for paying rent, moving, utilities, transportation, and security deposits. Loans may be available for these needs as well. The agency also helps with applying for VA and public benefits. Address is 17 Court Street, Boston, Massachusetts, 02108, (617) 371-1800
Society of Saint Vincent de Paul in Boston is made up of churches and Venetians. The charity focuses mostly on satisfying basic needs, such as food, free clothing, and personal hygiene items. However, the agency can often help people apply for financial aid, ranging from vouchers to medications to funds for heating bills or rent. Shelter, short term housing for single parents, and more is coordinated. Read Boston Society of Saint Vincent de Paul.
CMS, or City Mission Society, is a partnership of charities and churches in Boston, Dorchester, and other towns. The goal of the program is to stop evictions and foreclosures and in general prevent homelessness. To meet this goal, there is counseling, grants to pay back rent in a crisis, landlord mediation, and more. They also operate resources such as Emergency Needs Network and Lift Up for women in Suffolk County. Find details on homeless prevention from City Mission.
Metro-Housing Boston - Housing Consumer Education Centers of Massachusetts has offices across Suffolk County, Boston, and the state for that matter. Emergency assistance can be paid out to low income, poor, seniors, and income qualified families facing a crisis.
- The organization can offer ongoing rental assistance to those who are at-risk of becoming homeless, are currently receiving public assistance, or who are going from homelessness into an apartment. Case management and other government benefits are offered too. They are also involved in section 8 housing vouchers and rent subsidized apartments.
- This can include money to pay rent if faced with an eviction, funds for security deposits, utility costs and more. Landlord/tenant mediation may be offered as well as information on transitional housing units in the community. Assistance is offered for the homeless too. Location is 1411 Tremont St, Boston, MA 02120, dial (617) 425-6700.
Emergency homeless and eviction prevention services assist both homeowners and tenants. If the family has a source of income, then the state or agencies in Boston will try to help the client address the crisis using the following.
- Money is available for everything from heating bills to rent or water costs, as funding levels allow.
- Single mothers as well as DV victims can be placed into short term housing.
- Case management will get the resident back on track to stability.
- Other resources are also available More on homeless prevention in Suffolk County.
The Second Step and the Liz Kirsch Opportunities Fund of Newtonville can help victims of domestic violence. Free food, legal aid, clothing and help for bills, such as rent or utilities, may be offered. Emergency aid is offered to those applicants that qualify, including free day care for low-income women. Phone - (617) 965-2538, or look here for infant daycare for free near you.
Trustees of Charitable Donations has once in a lifetime grants for emergency needs. Funds, or a forgivable loan, may be issued for paying rent or other bills. They also help with utilities, medical expenses, transportation such as car repairs in Boston, and more. Resources are limited. Call 211 or (617) 635-3692
Department of Transitional Assistance offers a financial support service known as Family Shelter. This is an Emergency Assistance program for eviction and homeless prevention in Suffolk County and Boston. Help may be available for paying back rent or the security deposit fee on a new low income apartment. Or get referrals to legal aid to prevent an eviction as well as case management. Centers are at 2201 Washington St, Roxbury, MA 02119. Phone: (877) 382-2363
- Government cash assistance - Families in Boston and anywhere in Suffolk County can apply for public aid and government sponsored programs. Examples of what is offered ranges from Fuel assistance, free food, SNAP, and low income housing/rental assistance. Thousands of low income families and seniors receive grants and support every year. Get information on public assistance programs in Suffolk County.
Water bill payment plans and discounts - Families who are faced with a shut off of their water or sewer service may be able to qualify for financial aid. Senior citizens and disabled families may qualify for discounts. Read more on all Boston water bill assistance programs.
Neighborhood Service Centers are disbursed across Suffolk County. There are several, including in South and East Boston, Dorchester, Chinatowns, and other regions. The programs vary by location but can include the following.
- Adopt a Family may have free Christmas meals or presents for children.
- Income tax help.
- Grants for paying heating or utility bills, rent, or deposits.
- Many other services such as youth programs, clothing, weekend snacks for children, job placement and more. Find more information on Suffolk County Neighborhood Service Centers.
Senior programs provide financial aid, Meals on wheels, free government money and more. One local no-profit that focuses on senior citizens and the elderly in Suffolk County is Agency on Aging. Call them at (617) 277-7416 or (617) 635-4366. Among other programs they offer to seniors include:
- Housing assistance - If you need help paying your rent or money to make a mortgage payment, they may have funding for you. There are also income subsidized apartments or assisted living homes for the elderly.
- Transportation - For the disabled as well as others for medical appointments. There are also free rides to a grocery store, pharmacy or other location.
- Adult day care and nursing.
- Home delivered meals for the elderly and homebound.
The Howard Benevolent Society, which can be reached at (617) 742 - 2952, can provide reduced prices heating oil as well as grants for paying utility bills and rent. Senior citizens and retirees often struggle with the cost of living in the Boston area. They struggle with heating costs, medical, and it can be a challenge to get around the city and county. They often need home repairs too or help with healthcare. Find a variety of senior assistance programs in Massachusetts.
Boston area places for free stuff
Free clothing, furniture and non-financial aid programs - Items such as free clothes, winter coats, boots, professional work attire and similar items may be offered by clothing closets or furniture banks in Suffolk County Massachusetts. The non-profit centers may have other stuff. This may include school supplies, furniture, personal, hygiene items, baby diapers, appliances, and even access to career counseling and job search assistance. read more on free clothes, furniture and school supplies in Boston area.
- During the winter, many low income families, immigrants, and single moms needs assistance with warm clothing, including jackets. Charities as well as churches work to keep the vulnerable warm. To this end there may be winter hats, boots, gloves, and even scarves offered. Find free winter clothes for low income families.
Free Christmas, Thanksgiving, and holiday assistance is provided by non-profits, churches, and charities. Low income, unemployed, senior citizens, and the children of Suffolk County can all get help. Receive assistance including meals, Turkeys, Christmas gifts, toys, clothing, and more during the holidays. Get more details on free Christmas and holiday help in Middlesex and Suffolk County.
Free smartphones and tablets are given out in Boston. They can help kids (for school) or adults (for work). Free Apple ipad tablets, iPhones, Chrome books and more are offered, with a focus on low-income families on EBT or benefits. More on free iPad with EBT.
Suffolk County and city of Boston free back to school supply giveaways take place each year. Students can be given free backpacks, notebooks, writing material and other goods. There may also be haircuts, books, laptops, clothes for the school year and other educational material. More on free school supplies in Suffolk County and Boston.
Food pantries, free meals and emergency food vouchers
Contact the following for food, commodities, fruit, and other nutrition. First Congregational Church - Revere ((781) 284 - 4158), Boston based Grace and Hope Mission Pantry (dial (617) 442 - 7579), and Mt. Calvary Holy Church Meal Program (phone (617) 427 - 7596), and Saint Francis House Day Shelter (617) 654 - 1209.
There are several other organizations that offer free groceries, meals, or even applications to food stamps. Or they have soup kitchens or holiday food boxes for Christmas or Thanksgiving. Churches and social service offices often have referrals. Or locate a list of other free food banks and pantries in Suffolk County and Boston.
Other food programs are available. There are shopping classes to help people unit price while grocery shopping and other money saving tips. The goal is to get more food or groceries (by unit) for the same dollar. More on how to compare prices at grocery stores.
Mortgage relief and free debt counseling in Boston and Suffolk County
Massachusetts Housing Finance Agency helps homeowners who are struggling with their mortgage by offering counseling and a loan refi program. They can also help low income families buy a home in the greater Boston area. Learn more on mortgage assistance in Massachusetts. Or dial (413) 733 - 0999.
Metropolitan Boston Housing Partnership, Inc. (phone (800) 272 - 0990) offers various mortgage, debt and home programs. There is rent payment assistance, HUD approved mortgage foreclosure information, mortgage delinquency, foreclosure prevention and other support.
Boston Home Center - This city run site partners with local non-profits and HUD approved agencies to provide solutions to homeowners who are facing a foreclosure, or who are behind on their mortgage. All programs and resources are offered at no-cost. Other services are offered to renters as well, such as landlord and tenant mediation. The organization and its counselors try to prevent evictions and foreclosures in the metro Boston area. Click here for more information on Boston foreclosure prevention.
If the organizations above can’t help you with your housing or debt reduction needs, a number of other organizations are located in Boston and across the region. Most of them are non-profit and offer reduced fees for qualified homeowners and individuals. They assist with mortgages, car loans, credit card debts, bankruptcy filings and more. Find more Boston free credit counseling agencies and programs.
Free health care Boston MA region
Harvard Street Neighborhood Health Center offers health care and medical assistance on a sliding scale. There is also free care for low-income patients. Most insurance, Medicare + medicaid also accepted. The location is 632 Blue Hill Ave, Dorchester, MA 02121. Call (617) 825-3400
Codman Square Health Center offers discounted and some free medical care. Phone (617) 825 - 9660. They offer child and adult health services, adult medicine, information on Massachusetts prescription programs, family planning, eye care, and more. The clinic is based in Boston.
Low income families (with kids or adults) can get other free dental or healthcare services. There is everything from medications to cancer testing, insulin or supplies for diabetics, eye exams, basic check ups and more. Find more info on Suffolk County Massachusetts free community clinics.
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