What We Do

See the whole person. Understand challenges. Build on strengths.

Our programs and services cater to individuals facing different challenges, but the common thread is supporting and uplifting individuals through a blend of professional expertise, data-driven best
practices, and one-on-one nurturing.

Youth
Intensive Foster Care

Children who have suffered abuse, trauma, or neglect often have special social, behavioral, or educational needs and require an extra level of care. We provide ongoing training and support to
our network of remarkable foster families so that they have the assistance, backing, and knowledge to do their job well.


Our Intensive Foster Care program provides safe, supportive homes to children who have been referred by the Massachusetts Department of Children and Families (DCF) or Connecticut
Department of Children and Families (DCF), been involved with the court system, or have been in residential treatment centers.


Children’s needs are assessed before placement to find the best fit for both child and foster family, and intensive foster parents are part of a treatment team of social workers, therapists and other
professionals designed to help children and families meet their goals.


There are children in every community who need foster care, and we are always looking to expand our network of families across the state and into Connecticut with the aim of enabling children to maintain ties to their birth family, school, and community, and experience fewer stressful transitions.


The length of the placement can vary, but the intention is to work toward healing and reuniting families. Sometimes this isn’t possible, in which case adoption, guardianship, or (for older children) independent living can become the goal.

“Being a foster parent has been one of the most rewarding experiences for my family and me--reaching out to children who need a family environment and knowing you are making a difference in the growing years of a child.”

- Novelette C., HopeWell Foster Parent

Contact HopeWell to find out more about foster parenting.

Young Adults
My First Place

Foster youth represent one of the country’s most severely disconnected and at-risk populations. Having experienced trauma and neglect as children, these young people have a greater
likelihood of struggling with homelessness, unemployment, under-education, and poverty as they move into adulthood. HopeWell is working to change these odds.


In 2017, HopeWell became the inaugural member of the My First Place™ Affiliate Network. Based on a highly regarded and innovative model developed by First Place for Youth™ in California, the program combines intensive case management, safe, affordable housing, and education and employment support services—the necessary foundation to create stability, build skills, and move toward successful independence.


Through the My First Place model, HopeWell master-leases apartments and sublets to program participants. Young people meet weekly with staff to get consistent, focused counseling. The triad supporting their development comprises a Youth Advocate (social worker), Education and Employment Specialist, and Housing Specialist, who together with the young person create an Action Plan with short- and long-term goals.


Rigorous assessment and a data-driven approach that measures effectiveness and informs change are hallmarks of the program. Recent findings show My First Place youth having
significant success*:

  • 81% of eligible My First Place youth attended post-secondary education in the program (compared to 20% nationally)
  • 75% of My First Place youth achieved stable housing at program exit (compared to 40% nationally);
  • 88% of My First Place Youth did not experience arrest while in the program;
  • 99% of My First Place Youth with children retain custody.

While aware of the precarious position many foster youth are in as they enter adulthood, the program focuses on their strengths, such as self-reliance, resourcefulness, determination, and skill at adapting to challenging circumstances.


Nearly 900 young people transition out of foster care each year in Massachusetts. Designed to serve youth ages 18 to 24, HopeWell’s initial program launched in Fall 2017 in metro Boston.


* National figures reflect statistics for recent former foster youth.

“We are excited to partner with young adults as they stabilize, build
independence, and develop skills to meet their career and education goals.”


- Janet and Lorena, HopeWell Program Director and Housing Specialist for My First Place

Teen Parents Residential Program

A teen who is pregnant or parenting a young child is faced with trying to navigate toward adulthood while juggling the responsibility of caring for a baby or toddler—often with no support network or positive role models. We aim to change that.


HopeWell’s residential program for teenage mothers and their children provides support, shelter, counseling, and skills-building to young mothers in custody of the Department of Children and
Families
(DCF).

The teen mothers in our program have a strong desire to raise their children themselves and live independently, but their young age and family history of abuse and/or neglect places them at risk. Our program works to break this cycle and build a better future for them and their children.


Based at our Newburyport, MA residential home, the program provides:

  • 24-hour care in a safe, comfortable group home;
  • Excellent pre- and post-natal care;
  • Support and guidance from staff trained in teen behaviors and infant care;
  • Assistance enrolling in appropriate educational programs;
  • Career counseling;
  • Mandatory parenting and independent life skills classes;
  • Preparation for a healthy transition, involving either reunification with the teen’s biological family or transition to realistic independent living.


“It’s a blessing to be a part of the lives of our moms and their babies. To teach them to love and care for their children while caring for them is the most rewarding job in the world.”


- Kelly M., Program Manager for HopeWell’s Teen
Parenting Program

Intensive Foster Care

HopeWell was one of the leading organizations to develop home-based foster care as an alternative to residential treatment centers back in the 1970s, and it’s been a significant focus of our work ever since. We have a special place in our heart for teens, who can have a harder time finding a foster family. In Massachusetts (and the country) there is a pressing need for parents to foster young adults.


Teens who have suffered abuse, trauma, or neglect often have special social, behavioral, or educational needs and require an extra level of care. It is our responsibility to make that extra care happen, and we provide ongoing training and support to our incredible foster families so that they have the assistance, backing, and knowledge to do their job well.


The young people in our care are typically referred by the Massachusetts Department of Children and Families (DCF) or Connecticut Department of Children and Families (DCF), have
been involved with the court system, or have been in residential treatment centers. We have built a network of families across the state and into Connecticut with the aim of enabling these teens
to maintain ties to their birth family, school, and community and experience fewer stressful transitions.

Each young adult’s needs are assessed before placement to find the best fit for both the teen and foster family, and intensive foster parents are part of a treatment team of social workers, therapists and other professionals.


The length of placement can vary, but the intention is to work toward healing and reuniting families. Sometimes this isn’t possible, in which case adoption, guardianship, or (for older teens) independent living can become the goal.


“This work takes sacrifice but the results are priceless!”


- Carmen G., HopeWell Foster Parent

Contact HopeWell to find out more about foster parenting.

Adults with Disabilities
Shared Living

No two adults with developmental and/or physical disabilities are the same—which is why we get to know each of the individuals in our Shared Living Program, understand their strengths, interests, and needs, and find the best home environment for them. We match them with supportive host families who can provide consistent, nurturing interaction and oversight in safe, caring home environments.


The individuals in this program are referred to us by the Massachusetts Department of Developmental Services (DDS). Our mission is to help them master important self-care tasks such as using public transportation, shopping, managing finances, doing house work and maintaining personal hygiene.


We also help ensure they get routine medical and dental care, are not in situations of abuse or neglect, and receive professional services in an environment that fosters self-growth, personal
empowerment, and independent living skills.


HopeWell provides ongoing case management to develop service plans and treatment goals that are in the individual’s best interests. We provide our Shared Living home care hosts with supportive supervision and trainings to help them address challenges and any ongoing difficult situations as they may arise.


“My Social Worker is the greatest. He does his work to the fullest.”


- Jeremy F., Shared Living Program


Contact HopeWell to find out more.

Staffed Community Homes

Learning basic life skills, becoming confident getting around, developing the ability to have successful relationships—this is the kind of personal growth we see on a daily basis in our residential homes for adults with disabilities and what makes the work so rewarding.


HopeWell’s staffed apartments in metro Boston serve adults with disabilities. The intensity of support ranges from 24/7 services for some people to more limited care for others. Our staff works to determine the unique potential of each adult in our care.

Our goal is to teach the life skills that each person needs to live in his or her own home in the community. We help all of our clients develop the skills to live as independently as possible,
including:

  • Preparing simple meals;
  • Having banking accounts and developing money management skills;
  • Learning how to maintain their own personal hygiene;
  • Doing their laundry;
  • Maintaining ongoing regular health care.

“We are incredibly fortunate every day to support adults with different abilities to realize their goals and dreams.”


- Keith D., HopeWell Senior Director of DDS Service

Families
Critical support and stabilization

Families in crisis often experience strained relationships and face multiple real-world challenges—but the right support at the right time provides immediate assistance while building bridges toward longer-term success.


HopeWell provides support and stabilization services to families involved with the Massachusetts Department of Children and Families (DCF). We aim to alleviate the immediate crisis that brought the family to DCF and work to keep the family intact and on a positive path.


“Clinicians support families to deal with in-the-moment struggles in
order to help heal and preserve the family unit.“


- Jane F., Program Director, HopeWell Family Support and
Stabilization