At the helm is Pattie Dupuis as our Director of HomeOwnership. Pattie manages the team of three, packaging loans, addressing client concerns, managing existing programs like our Green Mountain Home Repair Program, spearheading new pilots like our Neighborhood Housing Program, and serving on the organization’s Executive Team.
HomeOwnership Center Honored with Grants
Since Downstreet’s founding, the work we do in our NeighborWorks HomeOwnership Center has been a cornerstone of our mission. When we began as Central Vermont Community Land Trust in 1987, the stewardship of affordable homes was the core of our work, with our attention to providing affordable apartments coming a few years later. Throughout the years, our HomeOwnership Center has grown from very humble beginnings into a robust program that offers services for a variety of people at many different income levels and stages of life.
As is true in all areas of the organization, the success of our HomeOwnership Center did not happen on its own; much hard work and determination has lead us to where we are and, in recent years, that has originated from three very dedicated staff members who currently drive the operations of our HomeOwnership Program.
Kira Charissakis is our HomeOwnership Education Counselor, responsible for developing our financial wellness and homebuyer education curricula, teaching workshops, and continuing guidance of clients as needed.
These mission-driven professionals have continued to raise the bar for their department, more than doubling the number of real estate closings they helped to facilitate over the last three years. They have a combined 40 years of experience, and both Kira and Cheryl became certified HUD Counselors in 2019.
Those who are familiar with Downstreet are generally acquainted with our down payment assistance program, which makes home ownership possible for those who are purchase ready but struggle to save up a substantial down payment required to purchase a home. However, many are surprised to learn that we also provide special loans for essential home repairs and that we offer financial coaching for those wishing to learn more about household budgeting, credit repair, and a plan for savings. Our clients are typically delighted to learn that their participation in our programs marks the beginning of a long, mutually beneficial relationship as we continue to keep in touch and offer new programs and services for every stage of homeownership. The same can be said of the credit unions, local banks and lenders, real estate agents, and other reputable real estate industry professionals with whom we have cultivated positive productive relationships. Our HomeOwnership Center is very much a hub that connects Central Vermont homeowners, home buyers, communities, and area businesses to create reciprocal benefits for each.
As a testament to the hard work and success our HomeOwnership Center has shown, we have recently been honored as the recipient of two separate $2,500 grants -- from Wells Fargo and Community National Bank, respectively -- to support our HomeOwnership programs and services.
“Downstreet Housing & Community Development provides critical programs to Central Vermont, helping to revitalize and strengthen these communities. Wells Fargo is providing support for Downstreet’s homebuyer education classes, as they believe that this resource ensures residents throughout the region have access to safe and affordable housing options.”
~ Briana Curran, VP of Communications and Community Relations, New England
~ Robin Coulter, Office Manager
Downstreet and the HomeOwnership Center extend our deepest gratitude to both Wells Fargo and Community National Bank for the recognition of the important work our HomeOwnership Center does, and for the financial support they have provided to continue helping Central Vermont families enjoy the benefits of home ownership.
To show your support of our HomeOwnership Center, take action today.