A Brighter Future for Cambridge’s Homeless

Harvard Square Homeless Shelter is a student-run emergency homeless shelter operating out of the University Lutheran Church in Harvard Square. We strive to ensure that our guests are housed in a warm and friendly environment where they feel safe, cared for, and respected. [more]

Stay at Harvard Square Summer Shelter

Harvard Square Summer Shelter (previously called St. James’s Summer Shelter) is open for seven and a half weeks each summer. We provide each guest with a permanent bed; three meals a day; and access to case managers, job counselors, and housing counselors. Click here for more information.

Our Latest Annual Report

How many guests have HSHS and HSSS served recently? Check out our annual report for these numbers and more information recapping how we’ve done this past year. Read it here.

Stay With Us

We offer two-week, one-night, and extended stay work contract beds throughout the duration of our season – that is, from the evening of November 1st through the morning of April 15th. Click here for more information on staying with us.

Volunteer With Us

Join hundreds of college students who are making a difference and working at the Harvard Square Homeless Shelter. Click here to find all the tools you need to get informed and involved.

Support Us

The Harvard Square Homeless Shelter relies on the generosity of individual donors, alumni, and other friends of HSHS who understand the value of our programming and services. Please click here to donate.


Though HSHS is fundamentally an emergency shelter, we also offer other programs to help as many as we can, as best we can.

Resource Advocacy

The Resource Advocacy program provides case-management to our guests to help them connect with social services in the Boston/Cambridge area. We help guests with employment, housing, transport, education, health services and more.

Street Team

The Street Team is a fully incorporated program of the Harvard Square Homeless Shelter, consisting of 28 trained volunteers, that runs from November 1st to April 15th.

Each night, a group of 4 volunteers arrives at the Shelter around 7:45 to prepare sandwiches and pack up other food before going out into Harvard Square to provide individuals with basic amenities such as food, blankets, and socks; distribute information about available resources (i.e. healthcare, job searches, food during the day, etc.); refer individuals to local shelters; and build relationships with people sleeping outside.

Work Contract

The Work Contract program enables guests who currently have steady employment to maintain stability and generate savings they otherwise would not be able to by offering extended-stays at the shelter. The program offers a 10-week bed, as well as many management resources. The Work Contract program was created in 1991.

In order to apply, guests must have a 14-night bed at HSHS throughout the entire application process. Every applicant must be working a minimum of 20 hours per week and saving at least $200 each week.

Find Us

Shelter Street Address:
Harvard Square Homeless Shelter
66 Winthrop St.
Cambridge, MA 02138

HSHS is open from November 1st through the morning of April 15th. Enter our lottery by calling in toll-free at 1-888-285-4038. For more information about entering our lottery to stay with us, click here.

HSSS is open from June 11th through August 3rd.

Contact Us

Mailing Address:
Harvard Square Homeless Shelter
Phillips Brooks House
Harvard Yard
Cambridge, MA 02138

Phone: 617-547-2841