Mayor Menino Heralds New Intergenerational Housing Program
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For Immediate Release
October 23, 2002
Released By:
Neighborhood Development
For More Information Contact:
DeWayne Lehman

Boston's Hope in Dorchester
Will Serve Needs of Elderly and Adoptive Youths

Mayor Thomas M. Menino today praised a new, affordable, intergenerational housing program planned for Dorchester called Boston's Hope. The project involves the new construction of 41 residential units and an intergenerational center on nine scattered sites in Dorchester. The project is the collaborative proposal of Boston Aging Concerns - Young and Old United (BAC - YOU) and the Home for Little Wanderers to create affordable, intergenerational, rental housing.

The project broke ground today at 88-98 Nightingale Street in Dorchester. The Boston's Hope proposal envisions a community within a community, one specially designed to meet the needs of former foster children, permanent families and seniors to help nurture the next generation. The City of Boston's Department of Neighborhood Development (DND) is supporting this development with a donation of 21 parcels of land and a $970,000 financial contribution.

"I am proud of the city's investment in this important project," said Mayor Menino. "I strongly believe that such unique and creativeng housing projects such as Boston's Hope and GrandFamilies House fill a need, and I encourage other city mayors to look at these types of housing for their cities."

At any given time, hundreds of children from Boston are in the state's foster care system, ready for adoption but lacking the families ready to do so. While they wait, they get older and more distressed, often in homes outside their own Boston community due to the shortage within. Many of these children are in sibling groups and are especially hard to place since it requires a family to have the extra space in their home and energy to take in more than one child at a time. Sharing the City of Boston's commitment to create new homes for children in foster care, the Home for Little Wanderers and BAC - YOU will build Boston's Hope where children will be accepted into families with the goal of adoption.

"Every new housing unit that we build in Boston serves a need because of our city's housing crisis," said Boston Housing Chief and Director of Neighborhood Development Charlotte Golar Richie. "But this project is particularly rewarding because of the population it will serve."

Boston's Hope will be constructed on sites that are currently vacant lots, with the exception of 219 - 221 Harvard Street, which has an existing single-family house to be demolished prior to the commencement of construction. The new construction will create 41 apartments (30 for the seniors, 10 for foster/adoptive families and one for a resident manager). Four of the units will be reserved for the homeless.

Boston's Hope will provide permanent homes and the necessary social services for up to 24 children. The family housing will be reserved for families committed to adopting foster children between the ages of 6 and 12; the families will occupy single-family detached or attached three- and four-bedroom apartments. The seniors will have one- and two-bedroom apartments in two separate elevated buildings. One of the senior buildings will also house the Intergenerational Center, where seniors and children will get together for tutoring and social and educational activities.

Boston's Hope is similar to the GrandFamilies House project. In 1998, the city and state worked collaboratively to develop the GrandFamilies House, the nation's first housing and service center for elderly grandparents and their grandchildren.


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