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Horizons For Homeless Children Inc

 1705 Columbus Avenue
 Roxbury, MA 02119
[P] (617) 553-5455
[F] (617) 445-2124
[email protected]
Katherine Carroll Day
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 Printable Profile (Summary / Full)
EIN 22-2915188

LAST UPDATED: 01/04/2019
Organization DBA --
Former Names The Horizons Initiative (2003)
Organization received a competitive grant from the Boston Foundation in the past five years No


Mission StatementMORE »

Horizons for Homeless Children improves the lives of young homeless children in Massachusetts and helps their families to succeed by providing high quality early education, opportunities for play, and comprehensive family support services. 

Mission Statement

Horizons for Homeless Children improves the lives of young homeless children in Massachusetts and helps their families to succeed by providing high quality early education, opportunities for play, and comprehensive family support services. 

FinancialsMORE »

Fiscal Year July 01, 2018 to June 30, 2019
Projected Income $9,475,949.00
Projected Expense $9,475,949.00

ProgramsMORE »

  • Early Education Centers
  • Family Partnerships Program
  • Playspace Program
  • Public Policy and Advocacy
  • Training and Professional Development

Revenue vs. Expense ($000s)

Expense Breakdown 2018 (%)

Expense Breakdown 2017 (%)

Expense Breakdown 2016 (%)

For more details regarding the organization's financial information, select the financial tab and review available comments.


Mission Statement

Horizons for Homeless Children improves the lives of young homeless children in Massachusetts and helps their families to succeed by providing high quality early education, opportunities for play, and comprehensive family support services. 

Background Statement

Horizons for Homeless Children was founded in 1988 as an independent, non-profit organization dedicated exclusively to serving young homeless children and their families. Horizons began with a few Playspaces in Boston family shelters. Today there are more than 90 Playspaces, in family shelters across the state, operated with the help of more than 1000 trained volunteer Playspace Activity Leaders (PALs). To make healthy play possible for children living in shelters, we build and maintain developmentally appropriate and trauma-informed, “kid-friendly” spaces and stock them with books, toys, and arts & crafts materials and provide trained, caring adults to play with them and help them learn.
These spaces would not exist otherwise, and they make it possible for young homeless children to engage in critical  learning activities. Without them, these children would have no place to play, and few toys if any with which to play. 
Our first early education center opened in Boston in 1994 in response to the need for quality childcare for the children and to enable the parents in the shelters to pursue education and employment.  We subsequently opened a second one in 2000 and another in 2006. The centers provide high-quality, trauma-informed care focused on the individual developmental needs of each child. All three centers are fully accredited by the National Association for the Education of Young Children and are ranked in the top 5% of early education centers in the state through the assessment conducted by the Mass. Department of Early Education and Care. The centers are located in the Boston neighborhoods of Dorchester, Jamaica Plain, and Roxbury, serving 175 children and their families each day between the three centers, and more than 300 over the course of a year. In 2011 we began our Research and Evaluation efforts, which strive to integrate continuous quality improvement and impact evaluation in all that we do and to inform best practices.   


Impact Statement

Horizons impacted the lives of more than 2,500 homeless children and their families across the state in FY17. We have Playspaces in more than 90 family shelters across Massachusetts, in every region of the state. We have expanded our impact through the further development of our Family Partnerships Program, through which we support the families of the children in our early education centers, involving them in the education of their children and providing them with the support and resources they need to accomplish their goals. We focus on the bi-lingual education of our children, ensuring that there is at least one Spanish speaking teacher in every classroom, and providing training for Spanish speaking staff and parents. The screenings and assessments of the children in our classrooms showed that they demonstrated marked increase in development after six months in our program and surveys of kindergarten teachers showed that the children who had gone on to school from our preschool classrooms were well prepared for school and transitioned smoothly.
We will continue to strengthen our curriculum in the areas of STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts, and math) and literacy; and to strengthen our family engagement services and our two-generation model through use of the Mobility Mentoring approach. We look to engage our families more in the centers and with each other. And we will be strengthening our partnership with Boston Public Schools in order to even better track the performance and success of our children going on to school.

Needs Statement

1.  Horizons for Homeless Children receives 70% of our funding through philanthropic gifts from individuals, corporations, and foundations. With the ever increasing costs of programming our fundraising goals increase accordingly. We are therefore always looking for new partners interested in supporting our efforts.
2.  We are always in need of caring volunteers to "staff" our Playspaces located in homeless shelters throughout the state.  Playspace Activity Leaders (PALs) are provided with an initial three hours of training, supplemented with on-going workshops and assistance, and are asked to commit to one two-hour shift (usually at night), per week for six months in which they play, read, and interact with the children in the shelter.
3.  Horizons' three early education centers in Boston and Playspaces throughout the state are always in need of new, age-appropriate toys, books, arts and crafts materials, and other supplies. We are in particular need at all times of Play-Doh, baby wipes, and disinfecting wipes. We also are in need from time to time of furniture and equipment. We publish a Wish List on our website noting everything that is needed and what the process is.

CEO Statement

Horizons for Homeless Children (Horizons) seeks to improve the lives of young children experiencing homelessness while working with their families to improve their economic and social well-being.  By utilizing a two generational model in working with both the children and their parents, we are helping to break the cycle of homelessness.  We are the lead organization devoted exclusively to the early education needs of young homeless children and their families.
Through education and play, we assist children in greater Boston and across Massachusetts by enriching their cognitive, social, emotional, and physical well-being.  Horizons aspires to ensure that children leaving our early education centers are better prepared for school by developing foundations for learning while also empowering their parents to support that learning.  Together with our volunteers and partners, Horizons staff participates in a national movement to improve access to high-quality early education and care and to create systemic change to support the unique needs of children experiencing homelessness.

Board Chair Statement

I have been involved with Horizons for Homeless Children for many years.  I strongly believe that we can make a difference in the lives of children who experience the trauma of homelessness and help to break the cycle of homelessness to prevent more children from having to endure the experience.  And it makes economic sense too - the quality early education we provide these children will help them to perform much better in school, graduate from high school, and go on to fruitful careers.  It has been determined that for every $1 invested in quality early education for those who are economically disadvantaged, $10 are saved in the long-run by society.
We are challenged by the ongoing waiting list for our services of close to 200 children and families but are determined to have positive impact on the children and families we do serve, focusing more on ensuring the school readiness of the children upon kindergarten entry and the continued self-sufficiency of the families.  And we are more focused on advocacy and awareness of the issue of child and family homelessness, becoming involved more in local and state coalitions aiming to impact legislation and policies affecting homeless children and families.
While the challenge of a decrease in public funding and the expansion of programming necessitate the pursuit of higher fundraising goals and aggressive fundraising strategies, Horizons is fortunate to have committed and generous donors and a reserve fund established as a result of a very successful five-year capital campaign that surpassed its goal.  The Board of Directors is committed to ensuring the continued financial and programmatic health of Horizons while our services are still so desperately needed.  As long as the need is there, the Board and the organization will continue to seek the help and involvement of others who want to see an end to child and family homelessness and to ensure that we do as much as we can to make it happen. 

Geographic Area Served

In a specific U.S. city, cities, state(s) and/or region.
Direct services are provided throughout the state of Massachusetts. Our three early education centers are located in Boston (Dorchester, Roxbury, and Jamaica Plain). Playspaces are located in more than 90 shelters throughout the state.  Regional staff oversee the local Playspace activities in each region.     

Organization Categories

  1. Human Services - Child Day Care
  2. Education - Preschools
  3. Human Services - Family Services

Independent research has been conducted on this organization's theory of change or on the effectiveness of this organization's program(s)



Early Education Centers

We believe that by supporting the social-emotional, physical, and cognitive development of young homeless children, engaging their families, and delivering high-quality teaching, children served by our early education centers will be ready to succeed in school. Our 3 early education centers provide comprehensive, trauma-informed early education for children ages 2 months through 5 years old who are living in shelters when enrolled. They utilize an evidence-based pre-school curriculum and the Center for the Social Emotional Foundations of Early Learning Pyramid approach to enhance social emotional development. A low child/teacher ratio ensures that every child gets the attention s/he needs, and we provide two healthy meals and a snack each day, as well as T passes.

Utilizing the evidence-based Mobility Mentoring model from EMPath, Family Advocates work with the parents of the children to provide coaching, support, and needed referrals, to assist parents in accomplishing their goals.
Budget  $4,999,222.00
Category  Education, General/Other Early Childhood Education
Population Served Children and Youth (0 - 19 years) Homeless Adults
Program Short-Term Success 
100% of our children who have been with us at least six months will progress and reach developmentally appropriate milestones and will be ready for school when they enter kindergarten. 
Program Long-Term Success 
Ultimately the children who have been served by our early education centers will enter school where they should be developmentally and will continue successfully through school.  Their families will obtain and remain in permanent housing, be self-sufficient, and will not slide back into homelessness.
Program Success Monitored By 

We recognize that one of the most important impacts we can have is ensuring that children overcome any developmental delays or barriers to school readiness and that they arrive at kindergarten on par where they should be in order to be successful in school. We therefore measure the progress of the children through on-going screenings and assessments.

Children are screened at intake and annually using the Ages and Stages Questionnaire (ASQ). And they are assessed quarterly using Teaching Strategies-GOLD in order to monitor individual student activity and progress and make any needed adjustments in individual curriculum plans. We utilize the Peabody Picture Vocabulary Test to measure receptive vocabulary and the Phonological Awareness Literacy Screening to measure the recognition of letters. We also assess the teachers, instruction methodology, and classroom activity through classroom observations and rating scales. Family progress is assessed against the established family action plan.  
Examples of Program Success  One of many stories that demonstrate the impact that our Community Children’s Centers has is that of Maria and her two children. Having become homeless, they were placed in a family shelter and the children were enrolled at a Horizons’ CCC.  When they arrived, the children showed signs of having experienced trauma and having spent their early years in restricted, communal spaces. They were busy all the time and didn’t have any control of their bodies,” Sheika, their teacher, recalled. Sheika and the other teachers worked closely with the children, focusing on structure and routines, as well as relaxation methods. 

The children, Junior and Jadiel, came to love reading and Junior even memorized the words to his favorite books. They are curious about the world and continue to thrive.  Maria went back to school and received her high school diploma. She worked with her Family Advocate to complete a job-training program in healthcare administration and to obtain a job in the medical field.   

Family Partnerships Program

As part of the work of our early education centers, we engage parents in their children's education and help them to see the importance of their role in their children's future. Because parents play such a key role, we utilize a two generational, whole family approach to support both the child and the family to ensure success. Through this approach, we look to strengthen families' protective factors. We use the Strengthening Families Protective Factors as a guide. Family Advocates work with parents utilizing the Mobility Mentoring approach developed by EMPath from the time of enrollment regarding establishing and reaching their goals and transitioning their families to permanent housing and their children from Horizons to kindergarten. We provide opportunities for parents to engage in classroom, center, and networking activities, along with workshops in parenting skills, child development, and a variety of life skills, such as health, nutrition, and financial literacy. 

Budget  $718,925.00
Category  Human Services, General/Other Family-Based Services
Population Served Homeless Families Adults
Program Short-Term Success 
In the short-term, families will engage more in the operation of the center and the education of their children and will participate in center activities.
Program Long-Term Success 
Ultimately families will no longer need the assistance of the Family Advocate, will remain in permanent housing, and will be successfully self-sufficient, and the children will be successful in school.
Program Success Monitored By 
Through ongoing assessments of the families and monitoring of the progress of their Mobility Mentoring workplans by the Family Advocates, as well as family surveys.
Examples of Program Success  Parents are especially grateful for the help and guidance they receive in helping their children enter schools and to adjust to the school and the child’s teachers. One child’s teacher related to his mother that he had a lot of behavioral issues in the classroom and the mother didn’t know what to do. The advocate went with the parent to meet with the teacher and then spoke with the child’s former Horizons teacher and realized that the child was so advanced he had to be more challenged, that he was finishing his work early and causing disruptions out of boredom. Once the advocate and parent met with the teacher and the move up to a more challenging class happened, the child's behavioral issues went away. 

Playspace Program

Horizons founded the Playspace Program in 1990 in the belief that all children have a right to play, play is key for healthy development in young children, and play is how children heal from trauma. To make healthy play possible for children living in shelters, we build and maintain developmentally appropriate and trauma-informed, “kid-friendly” spaces and stock them with books, toys, and arts & crafts materials. These spaces would not exist otherwise, and they make it possible for young homeless children to engage in critical learning and healing activities.

The Playspaces serve children in infancy to early elementary school age and help each child engage in important development activities and heal from the trauma of homelessness. Careful attention is paid to trauma informed aspects such as calm lighting, defined areas of play, and opportunities for choice. Each week over 1,600 children take advantage of the Playspaces in more than 90 programs serving homeless families in shelters statewide. 
Budget  $793,897.00
Category  Human Services, General/Other Child Care
Population Served Infants to Preschool (under age 5) Homeless Children Only (5 - 14 years)
Program Short-Term Success 
Children living in shelters will have opportunities to play, have fun, and be happy; to play with toys, blocks, arts and crafts materials and "make believe" items like costumes and plastic kitchens to gain physical and cognitive skills; to learn and be read to; to forget for a short time that they are living in a shelter and do not have a home to call their own.
Program Long-Term Success 
Children participating in the Playspaces Program will benefit from developmental play and educational activities as well as the full attention of a caring adult and trauma-informed care, which will help lead to school readiness and success in both school and life.
Program Success Monitored By 
Data is collected as to the number of installations and reinstallations completed, volunteer recruitment, training, and retention efforts, and numbers of children served. Feedback is regularly sought from shelter staff, parents, and PALs through meetings, focus groups, and surveys. Each region has a Shelter Advisory Board of the region’s shelter liaisons and other local agencies working with homeless children to provide input and feedback. PAL Council meetings provide input regarding the recruitment, training, and experiences of PALs, tools and techniques to engage and educate children with a literary focus, and methods of coping with behavioral issues stemming from trauma to ensure the highest quality service to children in shelter settings and to support the volunteer experience. We have established standards by which the Playspaces must adhere and a tool to assess each Playspace against those standards. We are also this year conducting a pilot evaluation in a sampling of shelters.    
Examples of Program Success 

Horizons' Playspaces are highly valued by the shelters as they provide a service that the shelters are unable to provide themselves, and they provide the opportunity for parents to engage in workshops and shelter meetings while their children are being well cared for.  We are able to consistently recruit, train, and place volunteers which allows us to ensure that all shifts are covered, with more than 1000 volunteer Playspace Activity Leaders (PALs) at the current time.

One shelter director stated,“The volunteers provide an invaluable service to these families. The children get a chance to forget for a brief period that they do not have a house to call their own and the parents are afforded some time for themselves. The kids get really excited. They look forward to it. The parents are under a lot of duress. The volunteers are just there to play. We are so grateful that this program exists.”
Surveys conducted of shelter staff, parents, and PALs, have all reported how impactful the Playspace and the PALs are on the children and the atmosphere of the shelter. 

Public Policy and Advocacy

As a direct service provider, we see the impact of legislative action and regulatory policies on the families we serve. Our Policy and Advocacy initiative educates policymakers and the public on the needs of homeless children and families, and advocates for state and federal policies that will improve the lives of all young homeless children and their families. Our focus is on advocating for improvements in the systems targeted towards homeless children and families, and advocating for the removal of barriers that make it impossible for homeless families to access resources.
Horizons advocates in the following areas:
  • Support of quality early childhood education
  • Access to affordable childcare
  • Effective scaling of best practices
  • Protecting the rights of homeless children established under the McKinney-Vento Act 


Budget  $230,478.00
Category  Human Services, General/Other
Population Served Homeless Children and Youth (0 - 19 years) Families
Program Short-Term Success 
Short term success is an increased awareness of the extent and impact of child and family homelessness and some steps taken to address it.
Program Long-Term Success 
The ultimate success of our efforts would be that there was so much public awareness and policy reaction that child and family homelessness would eventually be eradicated. 
Program Success Monitored By 
We know we are successful when we have helped to impact changes in policy or increased the number of people aware of the issue, as measured by the numbers of people signing the Pledge for Young Homeless Children, the number of "likes" on our Facebook page, the number of Twitter followers, etc.
Examples of Program Success  First enacted in 1987, the McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act is the most comprehensive federal legislation protecting the rights of homeless children. The law seeks to ensure that homeless children are sheltered from the barriers of access, enrollment, and consistency that can jeopardize their educational achievement. However, it focused solely on those homeless children who were in Kindergarten through twelfth grade and did not speak to homeless children in early education. Horizons worked with national coalitions and programs, as well as legislators from Massachusetts and other states, to amend the law to include the rights of younger children. Horizons is now participating in a state coalition looking to "bridge the gap" between homeless families' need for early education and care and their ability to access it by having the 2007 policy of providing homeless families in the state with immediate access to child care vouchers re-instated. 

Training and Professional Development

In order for our teachers to provide the high-quality, trauma-informed care needed by our children, they are constantly engaged in professional development and training. We continuously provide training and workshops for our teachers and enable them to take advantage of outside professional development opportunities as well.

In addition to providing our teaching staff with high quality training and professional development, we share our expertise with educators and service providers throughout the state and country.  Horizons has become recognized as a leader in the education of young homeless children and in providing trauma-informed care. Horizons was recognized by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Administration for Children and Families as one of its top ten resources nationally for training and technical assistance in early childhood education and family homelessness and received a grant from Mass. DCHD to provide training to shelter staff across the state.

Budget  $256,826.00
Category  Human Services, General/Other Child Care
Population Served Homeless Homeless
Program Short-Term Success 

Through our on-going training and professional development, we ensure that all of our teachers are well-trained in providing trauma-informed care, in social/emotional development of children, as well as academic areas in order to provide our children with the highest quality care and early education. Through the training of our Family Advocates in the Mobility Mentoring approach as well as the impacts of homelessness on families, we are able to better serve the needs of the families.

Program Long-Term Success   Over the long-term we ensure that the teachers are trained well enough to serve as Lead Teachers and ultimately administrators.  
Program Success Monitored By   We conduct pre- and post-tests of the teachers, as well as evaluation surveys in order to assess their learning and the success of the training and professional development program.  
Examples of Program Success  One of our teachers began as a classroom teacher, moved up to become a Lead Teacher, then a Senior Lead Teacher, and is now a center director.

CEO/Executive Director/Board Comments

We are proud of the high quality programming we provide to homeless children and families. We have established both a local and national reputation for the quality of services we provide through our programs, as well as our knowledge and expertise regarding both early education and family homelessness. Our greatest challenge is that we cannot serve more children and reduce our constant waiting list of almost 200 children for our early education centers.  A related challenge is the high cost to operate three separate centers.  However, this also presents our greatest  opportunity - we hope to eventually consolidate the three centers into one large center that could not only accommodate the numbers we serve now, but additional children, while being more cost efficient.


CEO/Executive Director Ms. Kate Barrand
CEO Term Start Nov 2015
CEO Email [email protected]
CEO Experience

Kate is a longstanding, devoted supporter of Horizons. She served on our Board for 14 years, including serving as Chair of the Marketing Committee for 5 years, and has been a Playspace Activity Leader (PAL) for three years. Kate is intimately familiar with the problems of homelessness in the state, and has a background in early childhood that allows her to understand the significant developmental impact for many of our children.

Kate is an experienced private sector and non-profit strategy consultant and operating manager. Kate has worked with C-suite and executive teams of large (top 10) financial institutions, Fortune 500 companies and non profit organizations to define new strategies, develop marketing programs, and restructure and realign business units to better serve stakeholders.  Kate was the Founder and CMO of Clareon Corporation, the first B2B Internet payment solution. In addition, Kate led Strategic Planning for the global retail and wealth management businesses and Global Strategic Marketing while at BankBoston. She has an MBA from Boston University and a BA in Early Childhood Development from the Eliot-Pearson Department at Tufts University. 

Kate resides in Beverly, MA and serves on several Boards including: the Board of Directors of Wellspring House in Gloucester MA, Lahey Hospital’s Behavioral Health Services in Burlington, MA, and Kate is Vice Chairman of the Development Committee for Beverly Hospital in Beverly, MA.





Co-CEO --
Co-CEO Term Start --
Co-CEO Email --
Co-CEO Experience --

Former CEOs and Terms

Name Start End
Ms. Dianne Luby Aug 2014 Aug 2016
Ms. Asa Fanelli Mar 2010 Aug 2013

Senior Staff

Name Title Experience/Biography
Ms. Sheila O'Neil Executive Director, Early Education Centers & Family Partnerships Program --
Ms. Tammy Reder Chief Financial Officer --
Ms. Tara Spalding Chief Development and Marketing Officer --


Award Awarding Organization Year
State Top Ten School Readiness Organization Root Cause Social Impact Research 2010


Affiliation Year
Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce 2016
Mass Coalition for the Homeless --
National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) --
Member of state association of nonprofits? No
Name of state association --

External Assessments and Accreditations

External Assessment or Accreditation Year
National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) - 5 Year Accreditation --


Our early education centers work closely with the Boston shelters in which the families reside, and with local social service, healthcare, and mental health providers in order to access the services needed by our families. Moreover, providers of dental, medical, and mental health services provide services to the children on-site at the centers. We work very closely with all of the shelters across the state in order to install and successfully operate our Playspaces.  Further, we partner with companies and organizations who provide volunteers, event sponsorships, in-kind donations, and funding. We also partner with other organizations to provide workshops for our parents and/or teachers. Some of our partnerships include: Jewish Family & Children's Services; The Home for Little Wanderers; Families First; Boston Healthcare for the Homeless; Young Audiences of Massachusetts; Raising A Reader; Boston Children's Hospital; Mass. Law Reform; Community Servings; Casa Myrna Vasquez; and the Roxbury Center for Financial Empowerment.
In addition, we are a member of On Solid Ground, a coalition aimed at increasing family stability and reducing family homelessness. This coalition includes many nonprofit organizations, the Center for Social Policy/UMass Boston, The Boston Foundation, and the United Way of MassBay and Merrimack Valley.  

CEO/Executive Director/Board Comments

Horizons is very fortunate to benefit from substantial contributions from individuals and organizations in addition to our public funding.  We hold successful fundraising events and are blessed with generous donors.  However, given the ever-increasing need for our services, and in order to implement our ambitious plans while simultaneously facing cutbacks in public funding, we have substantially increased our fundraising goals and established ambitious fundraising strategies. The Board of Directors has also authorized the utilization of the reserve funds that were established as a result of our very successful five year capital campaign if needed. 


Foundation Comments


Staff Information

Number of Full Time Staff 106
Number of Part Time Staff 17
Number of Volunteers 1,000
Number of Contract Staff 2
Staff Retention Rate % --

Staff Demographics

Ethnicity African American/Black: 30
Asian American/Pacific Islander: 2
Caucasian: 55
Hispanic/Latino: 32
Native American/American Indian: 0
Other: 3
Other (if specified): 0
Gender Female: 105
Male: 11
Not Specified 0

Plans & Policies

Organization has Fundraising Plan? Under Development
Organization has Strategic Plan? Under Development
Years Strategic Plan Considers --
Management Succession Plan No
Business Continuity of Operations Plan No
Organization Policies And Procedures Yes
Nondiscrimination Policy Yes
Whistle Blower Policy Yes
Document Destruction Policy Yes
Directors and Officers Insurance Policy Yes
State Charitable Solicitations Permit Yes
State Registration Yes

Risk Management Provisions


Reporting and Evaluations

Management Reports to Board? Yes
CEO Formal Evaluation and Frequency Yes Annually
Senior Management Formal Evaluation and Frequency Yes Annually
Non Management Formal Evaluation and Frequency Yes Annually


Board Chair Mr. Chip Hazard
Board Chair Company Affiliation Flybridge Capital Partners
Board Chair Term July 2017 - June 2020
Board Co-Chair --
Board Co-Chair Company Affiliation --
Board Co-Chair Term -

Board Members

Name Company Affiliations Status
Mr. Jonathan Bingham Janeiro Digital Voting
Ms. Lori Colella Fairfield Financial Advisors Voting
Ms. Elizabeth Crowley Burns and Levinson Voting
Mr. Ryan Debin Hudson Advisors of Boston Voting
Mr. Michael Eisenson Charlesbank Capital Partners Voting
Mr. Glenn Engler Digital Influence Group Voting
Mr. Matt Epstein Goulston & Storrs Voting
Mr. Timothy Estella Barclays Capital Voting
Mr. Scott Haig The Baupost Group, LLC Voting
Mr. Princell Hair NBC Sports Boston Voting
Mr. Chip Hazard Flybridge Capital Partners Voting
Ms. Kathy Klingler Sovereign Bank Voting
Ms. Kate Lubin United Way Voting
Ms. Melissa MacDonnell Liberty Mutual Voting
Ms. Linda Mason Bright Horizons Family Solutions Voting
Ms. Lauren Mazzella Community Volunteer Voting
Mr. Aaron Miller Managing Director/Financial Advisor, Northwestern Mutual Voting
Mr. Gregory Morzano Old Ironsides Energy LLC Voting
Mr. Thomas Murray EMC Voting
Ms. Sarah Nielsen Jewish Family and Children's Services Voting
Ms. Susan O'Connell Wellington Management Voting
Ms. Kate O'Neil Retired Voting
Mr. Steven Principe Morgan Stanley Voting
Mr. Rahim Rajpar John Hancock Voting
Mr. Peter Riehl Brookside Capital Voting
Mr. Mike Roberge MFS Investment Management Voting
Mr. Maurice Samuels Convexity Capital Management Voting
Dr. Lucienne Sanchez M.D. Mount Auburn Hospital Voting
Ms Barbara Shapiro Community Volunteer Voting
Ms. Eileen Smith Bright Horizons Family Solutions Voting
Ms. Janice Sturchio BNY Mellon Private Wealth Management Voting
Ms. Liz Vanzura Community Volunteer Voting
Ms. Maita Vert Crocker State Street Corporation Voting
Ms. Karen Walsh F-Squared Investments Voting
Mr. Orlando Watkins The Boston Foundation Voting
Ms. Susan Whitehead Whitehead Institute Voting

Constituent Board Members

Name Company Affiliations Status
-- -- --

Youth Board Members

Name Company Affiliations Status
-- -- --

Advisory Board Members

Name Company Affiliations Status
Mr. Robert Atchinson Adage Capital Management Voting
Mr. Joshua Bekenstein Bain Capital Management Voting
Mr. Roger Brown Berklee College of Music Voting
Ms. Sandy Edgerley Community Volunteer Voting
Mr. Mark Edwards Upstream --
Ms. Diane Hessan Communispace Corp. Voting
Mr. Jonathan Lavine Sankaty Advisors LLC NonVoting
Ms. Laurie Schoen US4KIDS Voting

Board Demographics

Ethnicity African American/Black: 2
Asian American/Pacific Islander: 0
Caucasian: 31
Hispanic/Latino: 2
Native American/American Indian: 0
Other: 0
Other (if specified): 1
Gender Female: 17
Male: 19
Not Specified 0

Board Information

Board Term Lengths 3
Board Term Limits 0
Board Meeting Attendance % 75%
Written Board Selection Criteria No
Written Conflict Of Interest Policy Yes
Percentage of Monetary Contributions 100%
Percentage of In-Kind Contributions 10%
Constituency Includes Client Representation No

Standing Committees

  • Development / Fund Development / Fund Raising / Grant Writing / Major Gifts
  • Executive
  • Finance
  • Nominating
  • Program / Program Planning
  • Special Events (Golf Tournament, Walk / Run, Silent Auction, Dinner / Gala)

CEO/Executive Director/Board Comments


Foundation Comments



Revenue vs. Expense ($000s)

Expense Breakdown 2018 (%)

Expense Breakdown 2017 (%)

Expense Breakdown 2016 (%)

Prior Three Years Total Revenue and Expense Totals

Fiscal Year 2018 2017 2016
Total Revenue $14,389,841 $7,925,882 $7,104,148
Total Expenses $9,060,729 $9,619,653 $9,430,444

Prior Three Years Revenue Sources

Fiscal Year 2018 2017 2016
Foundation and
Corporation Contributions
-- -- --
Government Contributions $2,898,148 $2,382,641 $2,009,687
    Federal -- -- --
    State -- -- --
    Local -- -- --
    Unspecified $2,898,148 $2,382,641 $2,009,687
Individual Contributions $9,230,235 $3,488,918 $3,291,959
Indirect Public Support -- -- --
Earned Revenue $615,730 $476,573 $460,151
Investment Income, Net of Losses $134,210 $57,262 $-22,338
Membership Dues -- -- --
Special Events $1,511,518 $1,520,488 $1,364,689
Revenue In-Kind -- -- --
Other -- -- --

Prior Three Years Expense Allocations

Fiscal Year 2018 2017 2016
Program Expense $6,689,786 $6,803,713 $6,857,697
Administration Expense $876,660 $1,274,186 $1,238,794
Fundraising Expense $1,494,283 $1,541,754 $1,333,953
Payments to Affiliates -- -- --
Total Revenue/Total Expenses 1.59 0.82 0.75
Program Expense/Total Expenses 74% 71% 73%
Fundraising Expense/Contributed Revenue 11% 21% 20%

Prior Three Years Assets and Liabilities

Fiscal Year 2018 2017 2016
Total Assets $18,135,412 $12,628,088 $13,609,146
Current Assets $6,964,735 $4,380,379 $2,361,044
Long-Term Liabilities $0 $0 $0
Current Liabilities $480,836 $663,642 $714,030
Total Net Assets $17,654,576 $11,964,446 $12,895,116

Prior Three Years Top Three Funding Sources

Fiscal Year 2018 2017 2016
1st (Source and Amount) -- --
-- --
-- --
2nd (Source and Amount) -- --
-- --
-- --
3rd (Source and Amount) -- --
-- --
-- --

Financial Planning

Endowment Value --
Spending Policy N/A
Percentage(If selected) --
Credit Line No
Reserve Fund Yes
How many months does reserve cover? 12.00

Capital Campaign

Are you currently in a Capital Campaign? Yes
Capital Campaign Purpose The purpose of our Capital Campaign is to help fund our new building, which will bring all three of our early education centers into one location while enabling us to serve 50 more children and their families at one time. In addition to serving as the headquarters for Horizons and the location of our new 35,000-square-foot Early Education Center serving 225 children (ages two months to five years), the building will house the Department of Children and Families regional office, the national offices of YouthBuild USA, the Boston office of Room to Grow and a new restaurant concept owned by the local Abreu family, as well as other social services. This will be a transformative community center for our families as well as a state-of-the art early education center for the children. 
The unique public/private joint venture between Horizons and WaterMark Development features the collaborative design efforts of studioMLA Architects and Embarc Studio and will be built by Commodore Builders.   The project is a significant investment in the Roxbury community, providing valuable new services and bringing approximately 400 new jobs to the Jackson Square area. The Horizons Center is scheduled to open its doors in 2020. 
Funding for this project is made possible through a unique combination of private gifts, new markets tax credits and construction financing provided by a bank consortium.
Campaign Goal $20,000,000.00
Capital Campaign Dates July 2017 - June 2022
Capital Campaign Raised-to-Date Amount $13,000,000.00
Capital Campaign Anticipated in Next 5 Years? No

Short Term Solvency

Fiscal Year 2018 2017 2016
Current Ratio: Current Assets/Current Liabilities 14.48 6.60 3.31

Long Term Solvency

Fiscal Year 2018 2017 2016
Long-term Liabilities/Total Assets 0% 0% 0%

CEO/Executive Director/Board Comments

In order to implement our ambitious strategic plan while simultaneously facing cutbacks in state funding, we substantially increased our fundraising goals and established ambitious fundraising strategies.  The Board of Directors also authorized the utilization of the additional reserve funds that were established as a result of our very successful five year capital campaign that ended in 2009.  Our deficit was a "planned" deficit, authorized by the Board of Directors, to be covered by the reserve fund initially and eventually covered completely by fundraising revenues. Through our efforts to increase revenues and cut costs that would not effect programming, we were able to eliminate the deficit in FY2018. 


Foundation Comments

Financial summary data in charts and graphs are per the organization's IRS Form 990s.  Contributions from foundations and corporations are listed under individuals when the breakout was not available.


Other Documents

No Other Documents currently available.


The Impact tab is a section on the Giving Common added in October 2013; as such the majority of nonprofits have not yet had the chance to complete this voluntary section. The purpose of the Impact section is to ask five deceptively simple questions that require reflection and promote communication about what really matters – results. The goal is to encourage strategic thinking about how a nonprofit will achieve its goals. The following Impact questions are being completed by nonprofits slowly, thoughtfully and at the right time for their respective organizations to ensure the most accurate information possible.

1. What is your organization aiming to accomplish?

Our vision is that every homeless child will have the opportunity to learn, play, and thrive. Homeless children have twice the rate of learning disabilities and three times the rate of emotional-behavioral disorders than children who are housed. For parents, homelessness is a traumatic experience that leaves them feeling very dis-empowered. At Horizons, we provide high-quality early education and opportunities for play so children can keep up with their peers. We support their families and help them reclaim that power, so they're able to get their families on a path to future success. Our major goals are to:  improve the lives of the children we serve over the long term;  connect their parents with the tools they need to achieve social and economic self-sufficiency; and provide leadership in advocating for homeless children and their families.

2. What are your strategies for making this happen?

We believe that by supporting the social-emotional, physical, and cognitive development of homeless children, engaging their families in the children's education, and delivering high-quality teaching, homeless children participating in our programs will be ready to succeed in school and their parents will be ready to support that success. High quality early education can reduce the effects of stress and trauma caused by homelessness and it is the most effective way to ensure future school and life success of homeless children, preventing the achievement gap that so often occurs. As parental engagement is key to a child's success, we believe that it is important to provide families with additional support services such as parenting classes and connections to community services, educational opportunities, workforce training, and financial literacy classes.

3. What are your organization’s capabilities for doing this?

Horizons for Homeless Children is the Commonwealth of Massachusetts' leading organization devoted exclusively to serving homeless children and families. We have been in existence for 30 years. Thanks to our specially trained staff, whose efforts are supported and amplified by thousands of committed volunteers and donors, Horizons provides hope and opportunity to the families we serve. We do this through our four major pillars:

Early Education Centers - Horizons operates one of the state's top-ranked early education programs, which starts children along the path toward success at school. All three Horizons' early education centers are fully accredited by the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC), an accreditation received by only 15% of child care centers nationally, and all three rank in the top 5% of early education centers statewide, as rated by the state Department of Early Education and Care (DEEC)'s Quality Rating Information System.

Playspace Program - Horizons is the only organization in the state that provides a safe, trauma-informed, well-equipped space and quality play to young children living in shelters and trained volunteers to engage in developmentally appropriate play with them. We give children living in shelters play experiences that let them just be kids and allow them to leave aside the trauma of not having a permanent home.

Family Partnerships Program - Our highly trained Family Advocates and other Family Partnerships Program staff provide support, encouragement, and practical guidance toward getting our families' lives back on track.

Policy and Advocacy - We give homeless children and families - who are always vulnerable and often forgotten -  a strong and compelling voice in government through our work with legislators and policymakers.

4. How will your organization know if you are making progress?

Our top indicators of success are the growth in development of each individual child; the level of school readiness of children entering kindergarten; the degree of participation of parents in Mobility Mentoring and the accomplishment of their goals; and the number of hours of play provided to children in the Playspaces. To assess our children's development, we utilize the BRIGANCE® Early Childhood Screens which provide accurate screening of skills that are critical predictors of school success, including physical development, language, academic/cognitive, self-help, and social-emotional skills. We also use Teaching Strategies-Gold in conjunction with the Creative Curriculum to assess their development on a quarterly basis and inform their individualized lesson plans, making adjustments as needed.

In addition, we measure instructional quality and effectiveness through classroom and teacher assessments. Classrooms are assessed utilizing the Early Childhood Environmental Rating Scale, Infant Toddler Environmental Rating Scale, and Teaching Pyramid Observation Tool. We also use a tool called CLASS, which allows us to objectively measure observable behaviors of teachers, or teacher/student interactions and will help to improve teacher interactions with students even as they move across age levels. This also provides administrators with a common metric by which they can evaluate teacher effectiveness across all age levels.

5. What have and haven’t you accomplished so far?

Horizons now operates Playspaces in more than 90 shelters across the state, in every region. The shelters are extremely grateful since they are focused on the needs of the adults and getting the families housed, they are not equipped to provide the opportunities for the children living there that Horizons does. In the early education centers, we successfully graduated 27 children to their next schools in September. All of the children that we serve in our centers show developmental progress after six months with us and many show marked improvement. Those going on to school are well-equipped for kindergarten work. Some of our children do so well they are placed in advanced classes. An example of the impact our centers have can be seen in the example of Amanda. When Amanda first entered Horizons, she was extremely withdrawn and would not speak. The trauma of being homeless-of sleeping in a different place every night and not having consistent routine-had destroyed her sense of security. Her teachers patiently used sign language and slowly built her confidence through dramatic play. By the time she left her preschool classroom, Amanda was a chatty little girl excited to learn about butterflies and science. She recently came back to visit the staff at the Horizons early education center to share her report card. She was on the honor roll.