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New supportive housing for veterans opens in Brighton

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Housing Authority

Development will provide 25 units of affordable housing and supportive services for veterans in need.

Building on his commitment to create more affordable housing in Boston, Mayor Martin J. Walsh along with Brighton Marine, a veteran network community in Brighton, and Boston's Veterans Services announced the official opening of a facility that provides 25 units of affordable housing to Boston area veterans. 

The Boston Housing Authority, in partnership with Brighton Marine, Boston Veterans' Services, VA Boston Healthcare and Soldier On, will provide permanent, affordable housing and supportive services to 25 eligible veterans under the Federal Housing and Urban Development Veterans Supportive Housing (HUD-VASH) program. The HUD-VASH program provides veterans with comprehensive case management and wraparound services delivered on and off campus - including primary and mental health care, and if needed, substance abuse counseling - to help veteran residents further their recovery while achieving housing security and independence.

"The City of Boston is incredibly fortunate to have a network of providers that deliver some of the highest-quality and most comprehensive services for homeless individuals in the United States," said Mayor Walsh. "We are proud of the fact that we have one of the highest sheltering rates for veterans in the nation. Brighton Marine is a great example of the work being done to help these individuals who have served our country, and I thank all of our partners involved for their work in making this incredible facility available to our veterans."

The City of Boston is committed to connecting Boston's military families with the resources and assistance they are entitled to. In 2015, Mayor Walsh released "An Action Plan to End Veteran and Chronic Homelessness In Boston: 2015 - 2018", which outlines the City's strategies to transform Boston's homeless response system in order to end veterans and chronic homelessness. Since the start of the plan the City has housed close to 1,300 veterans experiencing homelessness.

"Housing veterans has been a major priority for BHA for decades," said Kate Bennett, Boston Housing Authority Administrator. "We are thrilled to be able to provide critical support for this project."

The Residences at Brighton Marine, the largest development for veterans since World War II, is a $46 million transit oriented development (TOD) community providing 102 mixed-income apartment homes for veterans. The seven-story building is combined with an adapted historic structure to form a campus with 11 studio, 47 one-, 33 two-, and 11 three-bedroom apartments. 11 of the units will be set aside for households earning 30% of the area median income (AMI), 59 units for households earning 60% of the AMI, and 10 units for households at 80% of the AMI. The remaining 22 units will be at 120% of the AMI. Also included are on-site clinical, behavioral health, and family services.

"We could not be more thrilled to open additional housing options for veterans who have served our country," said Michael Dwyer, President of Brighton Marine. "This was truly a team effort and we are thankful for the support of our Board of Directors and community partners who have rolled up their sleeves to bring this vision to life." 

The complex is located near public transit and a local job center and will complement an existing initiative by the non-profit Brighton Marine that helps homeless veterans and their families with money for security deposits, rent, outstanding utility bills, and moving expenses.

The care for residents will be coordinated by the case management teams at Boston Veteran's Services, VA Boston Healthcare, and Soldier On, a private nonprofit organization committed to ending veteran homelessness. Since 1994, Soldier On has been providing homeless veterans with transitional housing and supportive services. These two organizations, in conjunction with Brighton Marine will provide on-site assistance through many services, including providing a resident director who will be onsite to meet the unique needs of each resident. 

"We at Soldier On are honored and excited to be included in the Brighton Marine veterans housing development. The men and women who served our country were there when we needed them, and we are here for them when they need a home and a community to be a part of," said Bruce Buckey, CEO and President of Soldier On. "We are grateful for Brighton Marine, their Board of Directors, the City of Boston, and all the other community partners to allow us to serve the veterans in this joint effort."

Each studio is fully furnished with private kitchenettes and full bathrooms. The facility will be fitted with state-of-the-art conferencing technology to support telehealth needs for veteran residents. 

About Boston Authority (BHA

Boston Housing Authority (BHA) provides affordable housing to more than 58,000 residents in and around the City of Boston. Residents are assisted through a combination of public housing and federal and state voucher subsidy programs that provide a wide variety of housing opportunities. As the largest public housing authority in New England, the BHA houses close to nine percent of the city's residents. Our mission is to provide stable, quality affordable housing for low and moderate income persons; to deliver these services with integrity and mutual accountability; and to create living environments which serve as catalysts for the transformation from dependency to economic self-sufficiency.

About Brighton Marine

A vital social service presence since 1940, Brighton Marine is a charitable organization that supports uniformed services members, retirees, veterans and their families through a nationally-recognized health management program, developing and managing mixed income housing, and providing various veteran support services to the Greater Boston community. Serving as the network community for uniformed service member transitioning back into civilian life and a resource hub of military, veteran and family services in the Greater Boston area, Brighton Marine has earned a reputation as a strong community presence and trusted partner in social services.

About Soldier On 

Soldier On is a nationally recognized non-profit organization governed by a full-time President, CEO and a volunteer Board of Directors. We work in partnership with the Department of Veterans Affairs and other agencies to provide veterans with shelter and support in an environment that offers dignity, integrity, and, most importantly, hope. Our mission is to offer a continuum of care that includes immediate and long-term housing with services delivered where they live. Soldier On's ultimate goal is to provide formerly homeless veterans with permanent, supportive, sustainable housing - assisting them in their transition from homelessness to homeownership.

About Boston's Way Home

Boston's Way Home is the City of Boston's plan to end chronic and veteran homelessness. Launched in 2015, the plan focused on addressing the housing and support needs of veterans and chronically homeless individuals. Since Mayor Walsh launched Boston's Way Home, the City's plan to reach this goal, Boston has ended chronic homelessness among veterans and reduced veteran homelessness in Boston by 36%. To date, the City has housed 1,298 homeless veterans and more than 1,000 chronically homeless individuals. In 2019 the City launched its companion plan to prevent end youth and young adult homelessness. Now, the City is finalizing its updated 2020 plan to end chronic and veteran homelessness and make all homelessness in Boston rare, brief, and non-repeating.