Featured heavily in the Nick Flynn memoir, Another Bullshit Night in Suck City, Pine Street Inn began its journey in 1969, offering alcoholic men a safe alternative to living on the streets of Boston. Since then, they have expanded to serve over 1,600 men and women each day, providing a comprehensive range of programs and services including housing, outreach, shelter and job training. The goal of Pine Street Inn is to make permanent housing a possibility for all people.
Pine Street Inn’s residential program, Stabilization, is located on Boston’s Southside. This 50-bed post-detox program assists adult males over 21 years of age, providing intensive treatment and support for chronic substance abusers. The objective is to offer short-term clinical support services to get these men off of the streets, increasing their potential for recovery. Men sleep in single beds in a dorm with communal bathroom facilities and meals are served three times a day, cafeteria style.
Treatment and Staff
Stabilization provides a bed for 28 days and each client must be fully detoxed to qualify. Pine Street Inn has on-site medical services for non-emergency care and psychiatric assessment, so counseling is available for those with co-occurring mental health issues. Although residents are introduced to the 12 steps during treatment, this is not necessarily a 12-step program. There are case managers who oversee each resident’s treatment plan to determine what would be of the most benefit. Clients attend individual therapy, group sessions and addiction studies classes. The goal is to get these men clean, educate them about addiction and to get them off of the street and back into society. To this end, caseworkers provide each resident with aftercare planning and placement prior to discharge.
Pine Street Inn Stabilization also offers a tract called the Wellness Initiative for current residents and graduates. The program includes five components of wellness: physical, intellectual, social, emotional and spiritual. Current curriculum includes Reiki, meditation, self-esteem and wellness classes, craft and makeover groups, on-site classical music performances and art therapy. In 2008, social worker Michael Ferullo founded the Bulldog Running Club. Staff and clients (both past and present) meet every Saturday for runs in Franklin Park. Those who are not ready to run are welcome to walk.
By providing residents with education and continued support, the Stabilization program at Pine Street Inn strives to prevent relapse and affect change in the lives of the men that it treats. With basic needs met for a while, residents can worry less about general survival skills and more about finding some healthy coping skills.
Pine Street Inn
444 Harrison Ave
Boston, MA 02118
Pine Street Inn Stabilization Program Cost: Free if clients qualify (28 days). Reach Pine Street Inn at (617) 892-7893. Find Pine Street Inn on Facebook
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