HUD Kentucky Office Heroes Helping Heroes Series

How Veteran Edward Dowlen went from Homeless to Homeowner

Kicking off the Employee Appreciation Month for the HUD Kentucky Office was Edward Dowlen who shared his story of hope fulfilled because of the many HUD programs that were there to help him when he needed help most.

The likelihood of Dowlen becoming self-sufficient after years of battling drug and alcohol addiction, when he joined the HUD-VASH program over 5 years ago, was not looking promising. Yet, inspite of all that he persevered and through his ongoing connection with HUD he managed to find many caring HUD partners, one after another, to give him a hand up at just the right time in his life which made all the difference. Each one provided much needed hope and nourishment to strengthen his resolve to become self-reliant and to achieve his ultimate goal of one day becoming a homeowner. The home that he was finally able to purchase was a Neighborhood Stabilization Program (NSP) house that was part of a local strategy in response to the Challenge to End Veteran Homelessness.

[Photo: HUD Kentucky Office Staff, partners with Mr Dowlen and Kentucky Field Office Director Taylor(suit and tie) seated in the middle]
HUD Kentucky Office Staff, partners with Mr Dowlen and Kentucky Field Office Director Taylor(suit and tie) seated in the middle.

"It's important to me that our employees know the impact that they are having in communities," said HUD Kentucky Field Office Director Christopher Taylor. "When pieces of paper come across their desks, they don't just represent programs, they represent real people."

"I want to thank each one of you for believing in me and thank God for giving me the strength to make it this far," said Dowlen as he graciously told his compelling story of how he hit rock bottom only to be where he is today. "You people in Louisville are just wonderful. Had I not had the people of Louisville helping me, I don't know where I would be today."

Both HUD employees and the partner agencies that had helped him along the way were there to celebrate with him.

Through a Veterans Administration (VA) referral, he qualified for the HUD-VASH program. He received assistance from Interlink who provides supportive services for individuals suffering from drug and alcohol addiction. After successfully completing the programs, Dowlen moved into a HUD multifamily Section 8 apartment where he established wonderful credit. He learned of homeownership counseling and worked with the Louisville Urban League, which is a HUD-approved Housing Counseling Agency. A HUD-VASH caseworker referred him to the Housing Partnership, Inc., who was involved in the development of the NSP homes and worked to ensure that he could qualify for the Louisville Metro homeownership financing program.

A special thank you is offered to the Housing Partnership, Inc., who recommended that Mr. Dowlen share his story for the HUD Employee Appreciation Event.


Content Archived: February 2, 2017