Our Mission

Our Mission

Hildebrand partners with families experiencing homelessness. We endeavor to break the cycle of homelessness by providing shelter, permanent housing, training and work readiness programs, and life skill development. We restore hope and build brighter futures.
Our Vision

Our Vision

Every family has a home.

About Us 

Building Brighter Futures: Shelter, Support, Stability

Hildebrand Family Self-Help Center, Inc. is a 29 year old independent nonprofit organization with a mission to partner with families experiencing homelessness to achieve self-sufficiency. Exclusive to families, Hildebrand began as an outgrowth of a social action ministry of the St. Paul AME Church in Cambridge. The organization is named after the regional bishop, Rev. Richard Allen Hildebrand, who authorized the rehabilitation of St. Paul’s former parsonage for use as a shelter for homeless families. Today, Hildebrand, one of Massachusetts’s largest providers of emergency shelter for homeless families, supports 306 families in shelter and our stabilization program, and also operates permanent housing on a $6.4 million budget with a staff of over 65 employees. Its housing portfolio includes seventy-three (73) scattered site apartments, five (5) congregate living programs, and three (3) permanent housing complexes throughout the Metro Boston area, including Cambridge, Chelsea, Dorchester, East Boston, Hyde Park, Mattapan, Revere, Roxbury, and Quincy. Hildebrand’s value lies in its ability to build strong relationships with families leveraged by strategic public and private partnerships that enable it to provide enhanced services and support. Some partnerships include the Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD), Horizons for Homeless Children, Cradles to Crayons, Novartis, Community Servings and most recently, Food for Free. Hildebrand, an organization that accounts for half of the homeless families sheltered in Cambridge, is also a part of the city’s Cambridge Continuum of Care, addressing the issue of homelessness.

  • Hildebrand’s value lies in its ability to build strong relationships with families

    Hildebrand’s value lies in its ability to build strong relationships with families

FY17Race
WHO WE SERVE
We serve a diverse client base of which 47% are Latino/Hispanic, 38% are Black or African American, 10% are white, and 5% identify as mixed-race or other. Almost 36% of families served had an English language barrier and a little over 13% are undocumented. Nearly 41% of families living in shelter have at least one adult member of the household who is employed and 27% of families have at least one parent in a school or training program. On average, working parents at Hildebrand earn $12.88 per hour, down from FY'16 wherein families were averaging $13.00 an hour. The median annual income of families in shelter at Hildebrand is $17,916 for families working part-time, and $26,790 for those working full-time.

WHERE WE SERVE
We currently have five (5) congregate living programs that shelter 53 families, two (2) in Cambridge and three (3) in Dorchester, and 73 scattered site apartments throughout the Metro Boston area, including Cambridge, Chelsea, Dorchester, East Boston, Hyde Park, Mattapan, Revere, Roxbury, and Quincy.

OUR APPROACH
Hildebrand values partnering with families and seeks to build a relationship set on a foundation of clear expectations, mutual respect, and accountability. We approach each family’s individual situation as unique and understand that every family has strengths upon which to build a brighter future. Throughout the period of services, families will set and measure personal goals that will help build skills that lead to increase self-sufficiency and permanent housing. We recognize that this is hard work that requires sustained commitment and focus. We are here to help with that journey.
Family Composition for FY17 Facts Sheet

During FY’17, over 56% of the families (71) were placed into low income or affordable housing. However, due to its intensive case management and long term support model, clients remain housed for many years post shelter; the average tenancy in permanent housing programs is five years. Every family is assigned a case manager with an expertise in individualized re-housing plan development and provides support that addresses the barriers to housing and self-sufficiency. The intensive case management support focuses on budgeting, household maintenance education, housing search, applications and advocacy, immigration and CORI issues, work readiness, and personal skill development.

Hildebrand support continues for one year after the family leaves shelter. Every head of household develops a plan of action designed to help them stay focused on their goals, recognize milestones, and measure progress as they move toward self-sufficiency. Families are referred to programs that offer HiSET, career development, ESL, legal services, job training, and childcare. Hildebrand offers workshops on a rotating basis that help build skills in parenting, self-care, and household maintenance.

In 2013, as a response to a growing number of families seeking emergency shelter, Hildebrand expanded its emergency assistance capacity by 20% and reassessed its program model, discovering that families in the congregate living programs had better re-housing outcomes than those in scattered sites due in large part to having more intensive on-site 24-hour support. As a result, the organization reduced the scattered-site portfolio and began expansion of congregate living programs. Three new congregate living programs were added over the past two years, the newest of which is a program that encourages families to build a stronger sense of community through a co-sheltering model.

Hildebrand At-a-Glance

In FY'17, we partnered 321 families, 226 in shelter, 84 in our stabilization program and 11 in permanent housing.

In FY'17, we partnered 321 families, 226 in shelter, 84 in our stabilization program and 11 in permanent housing.


During FY'17, seventy-one (71) families successfully transitioned out of shelter and moved into permanent housing.

During FY'17, seventy-one (71) families successfully transitioned out of shelter and moved into permanent housing.


Of the 226 families in shelter, 279 were adults while 398 were children, nearly 60% of the population.

Of the 226 families in shelter, 279 were adults while 398 were children, nearly 60% of the population.


297 children received gifts during the holidays in December, thanks to the support of many local donors!

297 children received gifts during the holidays in December, thanks to the support of many local donors!


27% of the heads of household were enrolled in school or a training program while 41% were working either part-time or full-time jobs

27% of the heads of household were enrolled in school or a training program while 41% were working either part-time or full-time jobs


Contact

614 Massachusetts Avenue
Third Floor
Cambridge, MA 02139

Ph: 617-491-5752
F: 617-491-2385
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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Hours

Mon-Fri 9:00 AM-5:00 PM
*congregate living programs are staffed 24/7

About Us

Hildebrand Family Self-Help Center, Inc. partners with families experiencing homelessness. We provide shelter, permanent housing, work readiness programs, and life skill development. We restore hope and build brighter futures.