Stay-at-Home: An Impossibility for the Poor and Homeless

As you know, Massachusetts has asked all of its residents to stay at home.

But how can poor and homeless women stay where they are—when they need so much help to make it through the day? 

As we have for decades, Rosie’s Place rises to meet this moment and the critical needs of our guests. Every day, we make sure there’s a safe place at Rosie’s Place for every woman with nowhere else to go.

While we adapt to evolving limitations, we continue to address our guests’ most essential needs. Every day, our doors are open to homeless women for meals and both daytime and evening shelter, and our support is available to women who are housed but still desperately require help with food and advocacy.

Women like Lucy, a longtime and elderly guest of Rosie’s Place who lives just down the street, in a subsidized single room occupancy unit. Up until last week, Lucyvisited us almost daily for nearly a decade. She relies on us for meals, groceries, toiletries, and ESOL classes. A stabilization worker also visits Lucy regularly to read mail that she may not understand, provide household necessities and help with budgeting. As this pandemic continues, our commitment to meet Lucy’s very urgent needs continues. This means groceries delivered to her door, reading of mail through emailed snapshots, and over-the-phone assistance. As she says of our community, “Rosie’s Place is my family, my #1 place. They help me, they welcome me, they are everything to me.”

And women like Andariel, who has been homeless ever since her Florida home was destroyed in a hurricane three years ago. After that devastating loss, she came to Boston for work, but soon after caught pneumonia, which developed into chronic lung disease. Because she was hospitalized so often, Andariel lost her job, and exhausted her meager savings just in getting by. Today–alone and afraid–she is a guest in our Overnight Shelter, waiting for word on a permanent place to live and worrying about her survival in a world where women like her are too often invisible.

Today, as the impossible has been asked of Massachusetts’ most vulnerable, we ask that you continue your vital support—as we do the very same for all the women who are counting on us, now more than ever before.

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Just as our support means everything to Lucy and Andariel–and all the other women who depend on us, your support is everything to us.

With appreciation,

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Leemarie Mosca
President/Executive Director