History of MHPI

Through the creation of safe and affordable housing, enriched by customized personal and supportive services, MHPI, Inc. continues to capably serve individuals facing mental and/or physical challenges throughout Greater Boston, Greater Worcester, Southeastern Massachusetts, and Cape Cod.



Born out of the de-institutionalization movement of 1975, MHPI, then Mental Health Programs, Inc., got its start as a service organization.  With the closing of state-run mental hospitals and a change in the way the State of Massachusetts dealt with those suffering with mental illness, people who were once able to find help and assistance in an institution were reintegrated into the community.  They were provided with a variety of residential and clinical support services.  At this critical juncture, MHPI responded to this new public policy.  The company was one of a select group of national trailblazers developing housing for this population.  MHPI became one of the first providers to offer services for persons with behavioral and developmental disabilities who either resided in the community or were discharged from state facilities as a result of a series of consent decrees by the federal courts.



One of the services the company quickly became involved in was the creation of housing.  At first, the focus was on those with mental disabilities, regardless of age.  Due in large part to the state becoming a party to these critical and landmark consent decrees and legislation, MHPI focused its mission on developing housing to support these post-hospitalized individuals.  In 1983, the first two of the company’s 15 facilities were occupied.  One of just 26 recipients of HUD 202 funding nationally to specifically house those with mental illnesses, MHPI established locations in Jamaica Plain and Roxbury.  Since that time, the company has converted old school buildings, hospitals and Victorian homes into residences for those in need, while also developing new residences from the ground up.  MHPI’s two latest projects, both made possible in large part with HUD 202 funding, are specifically designed to meet the needs of low-income seniors.  MHPI X, Senior Living on Bellingham Hill in Chelsea, MA, is a 60-unit apartment residence for very low-income seniors aged 62 and older.  In March of 2010, the doors opened at MHPI XII, Senior Living at Prouty in Spencer, MA, a 36-unit apartment residence for very low-income seniors. 



Recognizing the need to bring a broader range of supportive services to a larger segment of the population, MHPI created an affiliate, Residential Support Services, Inc. (RSSI).   Staff members such as registered nurses, social workers, service coordinators and occupancy specialists interact with clients on a regular basis to assist them by supporting their needs.  Group Adult Foster Care (GAFC) is a MassHealth program that covers the costs of personal care services for eligible seniors and adults.  Since 2007, the GAFC program, administered by RSSI, has experienced exponential growth and continues to accept new clients on a regular basis.  Those in GAFC range in age from their mid 40’s to early 90’s.  They live in either MHPI-owned facilities or those owned by other housing providers, such as public housing authorities. 

RSSI has been privileged to serve tenants in facilities owned by Housing Authorities in Boston, Brookline, Chelsea, East Boston, Quincy and Spencer.  Currently, RSSI staff members are busy enriching the lives of many residents by allowing them to remain independent in their own homes on the North and South Shores, as well as on Cape Cod and in Central Massachusetts.  The company is committed to growing its GAFC program now and in the future to meet the ever-changing needs of those it serves.



 1970’s – On November 3, 1975, Mental Health Programs, Inc. began operations.  In its infancy, the company focused its energies on supporting men and women who were re-integrated into society as a result of the deinstitutionalization movement.  MHPI supplemented state-operated programs and services at the Massachusetts Mental Health Center, providing educational, pre-vocational and service-enriched housing for those living with developmental and/or emotional disabilities.  In 1978, the company was one of just 26 recipients nationwide to receive HUD 202 funding as part of a demonstration grant program geared specifically for persons previously confined to state institutions for the mentally ill.  As a result, Mental Health Programs, Inc. opened “MHPI-I,” a 6-unit residence in Roxbury shortly thereafter.


1980’s – In 1983, MHPI-II, an 11-unit residence in Jamaica Plain opened.  Five years later, MHPI-III, a 12-unit residence, began to operate in Jamaica Plain.  Funding was also secured for a number of additional projects, including the company’s first multi-site endeavor, MHPI-IV, which contains 32 total units.


1990’s – MHPI opened 7 additional HUD projects, encompassing 11 buildings in and around Boston and the North Shore.  Included in that group are MHPI-V, the organization’s first facility dedicated solely to those with mental retardation, and MHPI-IX, which houses people living with HIV/AIDS.


2000’s – The doors to Senior Living on Bellingham Hill, a 60-unit apartment-style residence in Chelsea opened in 2000.  The same year, Residential Support Services, Inc. was formed as the service delivery arm of the company.  After over 30 years as Mental Health Programs, Inc., the organization re-branded itself and became MHPI, Inc. in 2008.  In October of 2009, MHPI, Inc. relocated its corporate headquarters to its present day location in Newton.


2010 – The doors to Senior Living at Prouty, a 36-unit apartment style residence for very low-income seniors opened in Spencer, MA, representing the company’s first venture into Central Massachusetts.  MHPI, Inc. continues to place a renewed emphasis on service delivery, offering GAFC services as well as in-home supportive services through contracts and private pay.


From its origins in 1975 as Mental Health Programs, Inc. to its present day evolution to MHPI, Inc., the objective of creating safe and affordable housing and enhancing it with the most appropriate supportive services available has been the primary premise of the organization.  One of the most important support systems for an individual is having a place to live.  The need for affordable housing for very low-income persons, particularly those with disabilities and the elderly, has been clearly documented.  MHPI, Inc. developed its first 6-unit project, located in the Mission Hill neighborhood of Boston, in 1983.  Since that time, we have been awarded funding for eleven other projects located throughout the Boston, North Shore, and Worcester areas, and we continue to seek new opportunities for expanding our mission.


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