Boston Housing Authority Family Self-Sufficiency (FSS) Program Triples In Size since 2020

Date Published: 
September 7th, 2021

From the Boston Housing Authority's website:

Through a new partnership with Compass Working Capital, the Boston Housing Authority’s Family Self- Sufficiency (FSS) program has nearly tripled in size since 2020, rising to become one of the largest programs of its kind in the country.

The FSS Program is a voluntary five-year program designed to help Section 8 Voucher holders to build savings, work with a financial coach and to achieve goals such as higher education or homeownership.

“Our residents and voucher families have a lot to offer this city. All they need is a chance,” said BHA Administrator Kate Bennett. “Our Partnership with Compass Working Capital has opened up exciting new pathways out of poverty for hundreds of BHA residents and voucher families. I look forward to seeing what they do next."

Since May of last year, the program has grown from 244 active participants to 714. In May 2020, BHA’s FSS program was the 47th largest program of its kind in the United States, out of more than 700 programs.  Based on enrollment growth, it is now estimated to be among the 10 largest programs nationally.” This enrollment growth is due in part to a new pilot program that connects BHA’s voucher holding population to the FSS program through the recertification process. Pilot program participants signed up for the FSS program at five-times BHA’s 2019-2020 rate.


“This program completely changed my life,” said BHA voucher participant Simone Lopes, who enrolled in the FSS program in 2020.  With help from her FSS coach, Simone was able to dramatically pay down her debts, including all of her student loans, and enroll in a public loan forgiveness program. Simone is now actively working towards fulfill her dream of owning a home. “For a parent working to raise two children, the FSS program has been an absolute godsend. This has opened up so many incredible opportunities I never imagined were possible before I started."

Read this article on BHA's website.

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