Accessing Services

Bridgewell Eligibility

Bridgewell provides a continuum of care to individuals experiencing a wide-range of life challenges. Depending on the need of the individual, Bridgewell is able to provide an extensive, customized range of services including medically intensive case management.
Throughout an individual’s life, Bridgewell’s variety of services can adapt to meet his or her needs without having to discontinue service.

Depending on the program, there are different ways to access services. Bridgewell offers programs throughout Massachusetts. Click here for an overview of Bridgewell services and click here for a map of Bridgewell’s service area.

The majority of Bridgewell’s services are funded through the Department of Developmental Services (DDS), Department of Mental Health (DMH) or HUD and Department of Housing and Community Development.

Most of Bridgewell services for individuals with disabilities are “closed referral” programs, meaning that they are only available to individuals who have been found eligible to receive services from Department of Developmental Services (DDS) or Department of Mental Health (DMH).

Are you experiencing homelessness?
Do you have an intellectual or developmental disability?
Are you living with mental illness?

Developmental Disability Services including Residential, Employment and Day Habilitation

For residential, employment and day habilitation services including Bridgewell’s respite program, Bridgewell receives direct referrals through the Department of Developmental Services.

Department of Development Services (DDS) and Department of Mental Health (DMH) Eligibility

To be eligible for DDS Services the adult must: be 18 years or older; and, be domiciled in Massachusetts, which generally means residing and intending to remain in Massachusetts permanently or for an indefinite period; and, have intellectual disability as defined in DDS regulations. An application process is required for DDS eligibility. To learn more about the DDS eligibility process, go to or call DDS Central Office at 617.727.5608.

To be approved for Department of Mental Health (DMH) continuing care services, an applicant must have a qualifying mental disorder as the primary disorder requiring treatment, and meet functional impairment and illness duration criteria. Read here for more information on the criteria that is evaluated for determining whether an applicant may receive care.

Behavioral Health Services

Behavioral Health Services are offered through Bridgewell Counseling Services (BCS), The Sovner Center and Lowell Adult Day Treatment (LADT). Bridgewell receives self-referrals and referrals from therapists, primary care physicians and other health care providers. START Clinical Services are funded by and accessed through the Department of Developmental Services (DDS).

For more information about services offered through The Sovner Center or START Clinical Services, please call 978.750.6828.  For services offered through BCS or LADT, please call 978.459.0389.

Affordable Housing and Homeless Support Services in Lynn

In the City of Lynn, Bridgewell manages 100 units of affordable housing.  These units range in type from Single Room Occupancy to efficiencies and one bedroom units.  Most units offer a form of sponsor based subsidy under the Shelter Plus Care and SRO Mod Rehab Programs, with the eligibility criteria being homeless and disabled. Case Management Services are offered with the subsidized units. There are also affordable units available for those not meeting the homeless criteria.  For more information on these units contact

Bridgewell’s Vocational Interest Program (VIP) offers vocational education and training services to assist homeless individuals towards self sufficiency. Participants are offered assistance in job training and readiness to interviewing techniques and appropriate dress for interviews.

This Program also offers Representative Payee Services to homeless individuals that need assistance with money management.  For more information on this program contact 781.595.5030.

Affordable Housing and Homeless Support Services in Lowell

Bridgewell’s Pathfinder Residential program offers 12 units of congregate type housing to individuals (men only) that are homeless and those that are homeless and have a psychiatric disability.  A complete assessment of needs is offered and treatment and services are focused on independent living and reentry into mainstream society.

Opened in 2009, Bridgewell’s Pathfinder Apartments offers 12 large efficiency units.  Individuals must be considered chronically homeless, have a mental illness and meet the low income guidelines.  This is a Supportive Housing Model and offers an affordable SHP subsidy.

For more information on Bridgewell’s Pathfinder services and housing options contact 978.452.9170.

Recreation and Special Olympics

Bridgewell offers a full complement of social, recreational, skill-building and athletic activities.  Adult Education and Recreation classes are held in various locations in the Lynn and Greater Lynn area.  Bridgewell also facilitates participation in a number of Special Olympic activities.  For more information call 781.593.1088.

Click here for additional resources.