Who We Are

At the West Side Federation for Senior and Supportive Housing (WSFSSH), our mission isn’t just a statement, but a way of life. For nearly 50 years, we’ve been providing safe, affordable housing that integrates compassionate property management with supportive services, enhancing the independence and dignity of each resident. Our vision is rooted in compassion, collaboration, and respect, driving us to continuously improve and innovate in our pursuit of high quality services for seniors.

Our Mission

The mission of WSFSSH is to provide safe and affordable senior housing that integrates compassionate property management with supportive services to enhance the independence and dignity of each resident. WSFSSH strives to create and preserve affordable housing while supporting the development of healthy neighborhoods.


At WSFSSH, we understand the unique needs of seniors and are committed to meeting them with unwavering dedication. We offer a comprehensive range of services designed to promote well-being and independence. Our integrated approach sets us apart, as we serve as owner, manager, and service provider in all our housing buildings, ensuring a seamless and holistic experience for our residents.

WSFSSH is more than a housing provider; we are a community of caregivers, advocates, and champions for seniors’ rights and well-being. Join us in our mission to empower seniors and enrich communities, one resident at a time.

Our History

Founding of WSFSSH

West Side Federation for Senior and Supportive Housing was formed in 1976 by a coalition of social service agencies, religious institutions, and community organizations. Together they worked to create a new form of housing – one that would meet the diverse needs of older people and persons living with disability.


Our First Building

Our journey started with The Marseilles, a luxury hotel turned dilapidated by the ’70s. WSFSSH transformed it, creating 134 affordable apartments for seniors and the disabled, marking our commitment to revitalizing neglected spaces into vibrant communities, shaping decades of compassionate service and support.


Red Oak Apartments

The Red Oak Apartments opened in 1980, on a site that once held a nursing home owned by the Little Sisters of the Poor. Renamed for a majestic tree on-site, it now offers 230 affordable units for low-income seniors and the disabled, symbolizing our dedication to providing compassionate support to vulnerable communities.


Our First Older Adult Center

The Center at the Red Oak, located at 135 West 106th Street, provides vital services and activities for seniors in the Manhattan Valley neighborhood Funded by the NYC Department for the Aging, it also serves as a cooling center facility during heat emergencies.


Our First Congregate Care Building

In 1985, WSFSSH expanded its services to congregate care facilities for seniors with the opening of 74th Street Residence. This crucial addition broadened our ability to provide comprehensive support to a diverse senior population.


First Privately Owned SRO in NYC

In 1987, WSFSSH acquired The Westbourne, NYC’s first privately owned SRO for non-profits. City-funded, it now houses 128 tenants in single rooms, offering shared kitchens and baths. It stands as a testament to WSFSSH’s commitment to providing permanent housing for homeless individuals.


Our First Shelter

In response to the 1980s homelessness crisis, Valley Lodge shelter was rapidly established by Betsy Wallace and former Executive Director Laura Jervis. Local leader Leah Schneider identified two tenements on 108th Street for its creation and has since offered transitional housing, meals, social services, and medical care to seniors.


Supporting the HIV/AIDS Community at the Ben Michalski Residence

In July 1997, WSFSSH opened Ben Michalski Residence, honoring gay political activist Ben Michalski from Upper West Side. The building offers specialized programs to support individuals living with HIV/AID, reflecting Michalski’s commitment to progressive causes.


Our Entry Into The Bronx

Grandparent Family Apartments, a collaboration between Presbyterian Senior Services, WSFSSH, and NYCHA, opened on May 25, 2005, to provides a supportive environment for families in need. Offering essential amenities and child programs, this Bronx building fosters an intergenerational community, supporting 50 families of elders raising grandchildren.


Extending Our Impact to Harlem

WSFSSH extended its impact to Harlem through the Small Buildings Portfolio initiative. Among them was the Revella, which reopened with 19 studio apartments for formerly homeless older adults. The West 120’s Cluster followed with the renovation of five brownstones into 37 studio apartments for diverse income groups.


FQHC Partnerships Begin

In 2018, WSFSSH embarked on a collaboration with United Health to establish Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHCs) within select WSFSSH buildings. These centers offer low-cost or free health services not only to our residents but also to the surrounding community. This partnership reflects our commitment to holistic well-being, ensuring access to vital healthcare resources for all.

Happy elderly multiracial people having fun together after yoga class at city park - Joyful senior and friendship concept

Our DEI Values

WSFSSH is committed to embracing, embodying and practicing diversity, equity, and inclusion. We strive to model DEI by becoming culturally competent and responsive to DEI as it impacts our organization systemically and structurally through our policies, procedures, programs, and practices. As DEI continues to evolve, we desire to become a leading senior and supportive housing organization where we are known as DEI champions for our staff, residents, and communities that we serve.