Semiperm Housing

Throughout Settlement Housing Fund’s history, we have envisioned a model of transformational housing for single parent families that would help them achieve the skills need to live independently.  Our vision became reality when we obtained a new, debt free, 24-unit building through the City’s Inclusionary Zoning Program and opened Semiperm on W. 102nd Street in Manhattan. The New York City Department of Housing Preservation and Development provides project-based Section 8, which subsidizes the cost of housing for the tenants, and tenants pay a percentage of their income towards rent so that they learn budgeting and financial responsibility.  They also pay for electricity.

Semiperm provides a home for 23 formerly homeless single parent families, including approximately 35 children.  This innovative program is tailored to families who need more assistance than six months in a shelter. Semiperm provides an apartment and supportive programs for two to five years.  During this time, the participants develop the skills necessary to support themselves, advance their education, care for their children, and reach self-sufficiency.  In addition to individualized counseling for each resident, Semiperm provides group programming and assistance on a wide variety of subjects including financial literacy, nutrition, and health care.  We have built partnerships with neighboring community based programs offering parenting workshops, employment training, physical and psychological health services, and credit and legal assistance. When they are ready to graduate from the Semiperm Program, successful families will be referred for vacancies in Settlement Housing Fund's permanent housing developments.

Since Semiperm opened its doors five years ago, the program has served 37 formerly homeless single women and their families, including 20 who are currently in residence, 11 who have successfully moved on to permanent housing, one who moved to college campus housing, three who moved in with families or friends, and two who returned to the shelters. Four of these families moved to Settlement Housing Fund’s New Settlement Apartments in the Bronx, and another moved into one of our affordable residential buildings in Harlem. While at Semiperm four residents earned Associate’s Degrees, one earned a Bachelor’s Degree, two received Home Health Aid certification, and three earned their GED. Currently, three participants are attending college, and 14 are employed. In the past 3 years, Semiperm served 34 single mothers and their 60 children. We provided 288 specialized group workshops, including activities for children, career and employment, family nights, field trips, financial literacy, health and wellness, life skills, parenting, personal development, higher education, and more.

All have participated in an on-going comprehensive program of counseling and skills building, including individual credit and debt management counseling which resulted in short term and long term financial goals.  We believe that a focus on helping participants further their educations is key to their ultimate success in reaching self sufficiency, and we look forward to celebrating their achievements with them in the years to come. 

Semiperm Housing was made possible through New York City’s Inclusionary Zoning Program and has been supported with grants from the Sirus Fund, the Vincent Mulford Foundation, The Butler Family Fund, the TD Charitable Foundation, the Citi Foundation, The Hyde & Watson Foundation, and the Wells Fargo Foundation.

Doreen Gibbs, Director

Semiperm Housing

210 W. 102nd Street

New York, NY  10025


Semiperm Documentary

©2014 Settlement Housing Fund, Inc. • 247 W. 37th Street, 4th Floor • New York, NY 10018 • 212.265.6530