I’m Pregnant & Have Nowhere to Live. What Do I Do?

Housing and unplanned pregnancy

At Clearway, we often hear pregnant clients share concerns about how their pregnancy might affect their current housing situation and available options. 

Many young people living with their families fear they will be kicked out of the house if they become pregnant. Others are currently living in student housing, some with roommates, others still with a partner who is uninterested in having a child. Some are already experiencing homelessness or living in a shelter when they find out they are pregnant. 

All these circumstances, among others, can create a huge sense of pressure for the pregnant woman. Sometimes, that pressure leads to an unwanted or coerced abortion decision. 

At Clearway, we want to empower you to make your own decision for this pregnancy, not based on pressure from your circumstances or from anyone around you. This article will explain various housing resources and options available to pregnant women facing housing insecurity. While this does not cover every option, it’s a place to get started. 

For support navigating what options are available to you specifically, schedule a resource appointment. You don’t have to do this alone. Your Clearway advocate is here to empower you in your pregnancy with information and support. 

Unplanned Pregnancy & Housing Instability: First Steps

Any problem must be identified before it can be solved. So, the first thing you should do is clarify: What is my current housing situation? And am I sure I am pregnant? 

These might seem like basic questions, almost too basic. But often, in a moment of panic and challenge, we are so caught up in the emotions of it that we forget to assess what’s really going on. Identify where you live right now, and if that housing option could still be available through pregnancy and beyond. 

Then, schedule a free appointment at Clearway to confirm your pregnancy. While you may have tested positive on an at-home pregnancy test, that does not provide all the information you need. An ultrasound will provide important information about your pregnancy. Get started by confirming how far along you are, if there is a pregnancy inside your uterus, if your pregnancy is viable or if you are having a miscarriage. From there, begin to assess what will come next.

Your options include government housing assistance programs, nonprofit housing support resources, and learning how to apply for your own housing. 

Does it feel overwhelming? It doesn’t have to be! Let’s walk through each one.

Government Housing Assistance Programs 

The United States government offers various housing assistance programs. In Massachusetts, various options are available to you. Their availability depends on if you meet eligibility requirements. 

CHAMP is the Massachusetts state-aided subsidized housing program. Through the CHAMP website, you can apply for Massachusetts public housing. You’ll select programs based on where you want to live. Click here for the CHAMP application page. 

Emergency Family Shelter options are available if you are a resident of Massachusetts, your family’s gross income is 115% or less of the federal poverty level (calculate your income compared to the FPL here), and you are pregnant or have children under 21 years old. Emergency shelter is available for specific reasons, including if you are fleeing a domestic violence situation. Find out if you’re eligible and apply today. Call (866) 584-0653 between 8AM – 5PM Monday through Friday, or visit an office location near you. (Springfield Office: 243 Cottage Street. Worcester Office: 50 Southwest Cutoff.) For young adult emergency housing options, see this list to find the option nearest to you. 

Bonus tip: apply for WIC for nutrition support! Whether or not you need government-assisted housing, WIC provides nutritional support for women and young children. Check your eligibility and apply today

Massachusetts Nonprofit Housing Support 

Government assistance is not the only option available to pregnant women who are either unhoused or facing housing insecurity. Many nonprofit organizations in Massachusetts are designed to support you in your pregnancy! 

Maternity homes are supportive housing offered to pregnant women to help them stabilize and strive toward their goals. These homes provide a place to live as well as various resources and tools to empower you. Here, you have a safe place to live while finding long-term housing, employment, and/or education options. Visitation House is a maternity home in Worcester; Christina’s House has options in the Springfield area. Talk to your Clearway advocate to learn more about these resources. 

Catholic Charities are another great resource that often offer housing support among other services. Check out the Catholic Charities agency nearest to you to learn more. (Call (508) 798-0191 for the Catholic Charities of Worcester County. Call (413) 732-3175 for the Catholic Charities Agency in the Springfield Diocese.)  

How to Apply for Housing 

The goal is safe and affordable housing for yourself and your family. While the above resources are great, you might not need them! Maybe you just feel overwhelmed at the thought of applying for housing right now, but you know it’s a realistic option for you. If that’s the case, seek support with the application process. This might come from a friend or family member who has done this before. Remind yourself: “I am capable. I am intelligent. I can learn new things.” You can do this! 

This article from the She Might online resource hub walks you through a step-by-step checklist of what you need to apply for an apartment. Once you know what apartments you are interested in applying for, take it one step at a time. If you get overwhelmed, pause and take a deep breath. Remember, people have done this before you, and more people will do it after you! We all have to learn how to do new things, and it’s okay to make mistakes.  

Lastly, don’t be afraid to ask for help! You are not alone. 

Unplanned Pregnancy: Know Your Options 

Whew! You made it to the end. Congratulations! 

Let’s summarize. If you’re unexpectedly pregnant and need to find housing, you have options. These include government housing assistance and emergency housing, maternity homes and other charities, and learning how to apply for your own apartment.

At Clearway Clinic, we offer resource appointments with an advocate to help you get started and point you in the right direction. We also offer medical appointments to confirm your pregnancy. Maybe you feel like abortion is your only way out, but you know if circumstances were different you would feel differently. Know that you have options. Besides housing support, your advocate can also share with you adoption resources, where you can choose to have your baby and release them to live with a loving family of your choice. 

You are not alone! Schedule your pregnancy confirmation and/or resource appointment today. 

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Clearway Women's Health Clinic - Pregnancy & STI Appointments Available

A member of our team will contact you within 30 minutes if requesting an appointment during normal business hours.

Monday through Friday: 9am-03:30pm

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