Community Resource Guide: Family Shelters

To apply for DHCD/DTA (state-funded) shelter, read eligibility requirements and helpful tips here, then call 866-584-0653 and speak with a Homeless Coordinator, or apply in person at one of these locations:

Office hours are from 8:00 am - 4:00 pm

  • Boston – 1010 Massachusetts Avenue - New Market Square
  • Chelsea – 80 Everett Avenue, 3rd Floor


If you find that you are NOT eligible for the state-funded shelter services, please contact our Housing Clinic staff for further assistance.


Eligibility- who is eligible for State Emergency Shelter?

  • You are eligible if you have a child under 21 years old or are pregnant, AND
  • are a resident of Massachusetts
  • meet the income limits (Food Stamps don’t count as income) AND
  • At least one member is either a US citizen or at least one family member is “PRUCOL” (persons residing under color of law) which includes refugees, asylees and lawful permanent resident


  • You are homeless through no fault of your own (No-fault fire, flood, natural disaster, condemnation, or foreclosure, no fault eviction) OR
  • Child(ren) are exposed to a substantial health and safety risk
  • You have a place, but one that is overcrowded or unsafe. OR
  • You need to leave your current housing due to domestic violence or a severe medical condition;


  • You have no place to stay with family or friends.

 - Based on, November 2017


State Emergency Shelter Rules for Families with Non-US Citizens

What to Bring with You - When You Go to the DHCD Office to Apply for EA Family Shelter


Additional information on shelters for men, women, and families:

Boston Public Health Shelter List

Health Care Without Walls Shelter List