By Dees Stribling, Contributing Editor
Boston—The agency MassHousing has awarded two grants totaling $200,000 to two nonprofits to help them develop affordable “sober housing” in separate locations in Massachusetts, Fitchburg and Quincy. The grants will come from the Center for Community Recovery Innovations Inc. (CCRI), a MassHousing nonprofit subsidiary that supports affordable sober housing in the state.
One of the CCRI grants is for Twin Cities Community Development Corp. in Fitchburg, which is north-central Massachusetts. The nonprofit will receive $75,000 to help it construct three new one-bedroom apartments and rehabilitate 13 existing one-bedroom apartments for men in substance-abuse recovery. Funding partners include the state Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD) and the City of Fitchburg.
The other grant will go to NeighborWorks of Southern Massachusetts, which is in Quincy, a suburb of Boston. It will total $125,000 to help create 12 affordable sober two-bedroom apartments for veterans and their families. Funding partners include DHCD and the City of Quincy.
Sober housing is designed to be an alcohol- and drug-free environment for recovering substance abusers, since lack of such an environment can be a serious obstacle to sustained abstinence. Thus far CCRI has awarded more than $7.8 million in grants to create about 1,700 units of substance-free housing in nearly 40 properties for men, women, families, veterans, the homeless and ex-offenders.
MassHousing is the commonwealth’s affordable housing bank, and as such it supports the creation and preservation of affordable housing—both for-sale and rental housing—for Massachusetts residents with modest incomes. MassHousing is a self-sustaining agency that doesn’t use public funding for its programs.