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New Bipartisan Report Says Nation Ill-prepared for Expanding Senior Population, Highlights Vermont Housing/Health Model

Posted May 25, 2016

Support And Services at Home (SASH) Model Called a “Success Story”

A report released Monday, May 23rd by the Bipartisan Policy Center (BPC) says the U.S. is on the verge of a “major expansion of its senior population.” The report holds that most older adults want to age independently in their homes and communities, yet most homes and communities can’t safely and affordably accommodate this desire. Recommendations include increasing the availability of service-enriched housing (like Vermont’s Support and Services at Home model) to improve health outcomes in seniors while cutting the growth in Medicare expenditures.

Bipartisan Policy Center, a Washington, DC-based think tank seeking policy solutions from both parties, formed a Senior Health and Housing Task Force to evaluate the linkage between health care and housing. The resulting report, Healthy Aging Begins at Home, points to integration of healthcare and housing systems as a proven route to better management of chronic diseases, improved health outcomes, and a reduced financial burden on our health care system.

Healthy Aging Begins at Home recognizes Support and Services at Home (SASH), a Vermont model launched by Cathedral Square, as a successful way to coordinate community resources (healthcare providers, Area Agencies on Aging, mental health providers, and nonprofit housing organizations) in support of seniors who choose to age in their home. “Initial data demonstrate positive impacts on resident health, health care utilization, and a slowing of the growth of Medicare expenditures relative to two control groups.”

“This BPC report holds broad implications for the nation as seniors become a greater percentage of our overall population, “said Kim Fitzgerald, Cathedral Square CEO. “SASH is an important solution to challenges faced by our healthcare and housing systems.”

The full report is available at

For a link to the full press release, including contact information, click here.

For more news on the SASH program, click here to view a recent piece by VPR – “Vermont’s Innovative Elder Care Program, SASH, Cited As A National Model”


Study: Vermont Housing and Health Care Model Shown to Improve Senior Health and Cut Growth in Medicare Spending

Posted April 29, 2016

South Burlington, VT—RTI International and LeadingAge Center for Applied Research recently released the results of their Second Annual SASH (Support And Services at Home) Evaluation. The SASH model; created in South Burlington, VT, by Cathedral Square, residents of Heineberg Senior Housing and partner community agencies; connects low-income Vermont seniors and adults with disabilities with community-based services and promotes coordination of health care. The evaluations of SASH gauge the model’s efficacy in facilitating healthy and economically viable “aging in place”. The federally commissioned study lays the groundwork for national expansion of the model.

The report concludes SASH participants demonstrated statistically significant lower growth in expenditure across categories including total Medicare expenditures, emergency room visits, hospital outpatient department visits, and primary care/specialist physician visits. Against a comparison group, SASH participants in the most experienced panels show growth in Medicare expenses was lower by an estimated $1,536 per beneficiary per year.

Senator Bernie Sanders, a long-time SASH supporter, released the following statement: “I believe that all seniors deserve to age with respect, dignity and have access to the social and medical supports to stay healthy and at home. SASH is a leading model to help seniors achieve that goal.”

“We’re pleased by the Evaluation results. It’s rewarding to see our beliefs confirmed by hard data,” said Kim Fitzgerald, Cathedral Square CEO. “But the real measure of what we do is feedback (SASH participants) give us. They make it clear we’re making a difference in their lives through better health and the freedom of independent living.”

Amy Kandilov, lead investigator for RTI International added, “The aging baby boom generation presents social, economic, and health challenges. We’re encouraged by these findings that SASH offers a cost-effective way to address the impact of an aging population.”

RTI International and its subcontractor, LeadingAge, were engaged by the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, and the Administration for Community Living to evaluate the SASH model through a mix of qualitative and quantitative methods. In this second year of evaluation RTI conducted site visits in four geographic area of Vermont, interviewing staff from core partner organizations including: area agencies on aging, visiting nurse associations, mental health agencies, and the Blueprint for Health’s Community Health Teams. The evaluation team also conducted quarterly calls with SASH staff to collect ongoing feedback on implementation of the program.

View the report here:


Cathedral Square Wins Annual TD Charitable Foundation Housing for Everyone Affordable Housing Grant Competition, Awarded $100,000 for Elm Place

Posted December 2, 2015

Cathedral Square was recently awarded a $100,000 affordable housing grant through the TD Charitable Foundation’s Housing for Everyone grant competition. The grant will be used to help fund the construction of Elm Place, a new affordable housing community in Milton, Vermont.

Cathedral Square’s Elm Place will be a service-enriched senior housing community located on a smart growth site in the heart of Milton’s downtown. This thoughtfully positioned property will sit adjacent to UVM Medical Center’s Milton Family Practice and near the senior center, pharmacy, grocery store, churches, and library, with sidewalks providing walking access to all of these services. Features will include a community room with kitchen, lounge, elevators, laundry facilities, storage, underbuilding parking, and an outdoor courtyard for social gatherings. The building will be energy efficient and the first certified Passive House multifamily building in Vermont. Of the 30-units in this property, 28 will be tax credit units for seniors earning less than 60% of area median income (AMI) and two will be market rate. Elm Place will offer SASHSM (Support And Services at Home) at no cost for residents.

“There is a significant need for service- enriched, safe, affordable senior housing in Milton,” states Kim Fitzgerald, CEO, Cathedral Square. “TD Charitable Foundation’s generous grant will help to ensure Elm Place is completed in early 2017 to provide comfortable, secure homes to many of Milton’s deserving elderly residents.”

This year’s “Housing for Everyone” theme was Affordable Housing for Seniors, focusing on initiatives that support the development of safe, affordable, accessible housing for older adults, aged 55 and over.

The Housing for Everyone grant competition is one of the TD Charitable Foundation’s most widely known signature programs. The competition invites local non-profit organizations from Maine to Florida to submit proposals outlining their plans and initiatives to support and provide affordable housing initiatives in their communities. Twenty-five organizations throughout TD Bank’s footprint from Maine to Florida were awarded a $100,000 grant for a total grant donation of $2.5 million in 2015.

For the full press release and to read more about Cathedral Square and the TD Charitable Foundation, click here.


Job Opportunity: Director of Operations at Cathedral Sqaure

Posted September 21, 2015

Cathedral Square Corporation, a nonprofit organization providing housing and services to seniors throughout Vermont, is seeking a Director of Operations who will be responsible for overseeing the operations for all CSC’s properties including but not limited to the financial, social, and structural aspects. He/she also directs and supervises the Director of Maintenance, Occupancy and Compliance Manager, SASH Team Leaders, and Nursing.

Applicants must possess a Bachelor’s degree in Administration, Business, or other related field. Must have at least five years’ experience managing or working with affordable housing. A comprehensive understanding of federal and state housing programs including the Low Income Housing Tax Credit Program and HUD Supportive Housing programs. Experience working with budgets, audits, and building maintenance preferred. Knowledge of the SASH program is preferred. Must possess good interpersonal communication skills and the ability to work with a variety of people in a variety of circumstances. Must possess working knowledge of Excel, Word, and Publisher.

Apply with cover letter and resume to Cathedral Square is an equal opportunity employer.



VAHC TV: Affordable Assisted Living

Posted August 6, 2015

Ted Wimpey, VAHC Chair and Director of the CVOEO Fair Housing Project, hosts a discussion on ‘Affordable Assisted Living’ with Kim Fitzgerald, Acting CEO for Cathedral Square Corporation and Laura Wilson, Director of Cathedral Square Senior Living. To watch the program, view the embedded link below or click here. You can also view the program on-air on Thursday August 6 at 7:00pm or Monday August 10, 17, and 24 at 3:00pm on Channel 17/Town Meeting TV.


Job Opportunity: President & CEO of Cathedral Square Corporation

Posted June 19, 2015

Cathedral Square Corporation is seeking a proven leader to achieve its vision to create healthy environments where all Vermonters have access to affordable homes and the supports they need. During a time of unprecedented change in the health care and affordable housing industries, the next President and CEO will fully understand both worlds and anticipate the opportunities that exist at their intersection. The President and CEO will have the financial acumen and exceptional interpersonal skills to maintain a thriving nonprofit business as well as the leadership to motivate staff at one of the Best Places to Work in Vermont. As CSC’s external ambassador, the next President and CEO will champion equity and affordability for the highest need, lowest income Vermonters. Interested candidates should note that there is a strong internal candidate for this position.

The CEO will be an experienced leader at the Executive level of a mid-size to large organization with demonstrated effective skills in the development and support of a multidisciplinary Board of Directors. The CEO will be a critical strategic thinker and problem solver with demonstrated talent in relationship building and a passion for low income elderly and special needs populations. A master’s degree in public policy, gerontology, business administration or related field is a plus. The successful candidate will have knowledge of CSC operations and specifically an understanding of the complex national and state funding and regulatory environments of affordable housing and health care. The CEO must possess excellent verbal and written communication skills and proven capacity to facilitate effectively across diverse partner organizations.

For more information and to apply go to



AARP Vermont Live: Housing Issues

Posted April 2, 2015

Recently VAHC Director Erhard Mahnke and Cindy Reid of Cathedral Square Corporation sat down with Host Kelly Stoddard Poor, Associate State Director for Outreach of AARP Vermont to discuss senior housing issues on AARP Live.

To view the program, see the embedded video below or click here.


Cathedral Square Named One of the Best Places to Work in Vermont

Posted March 30, 2015

Cathedral Square was recently named one of the 2015 Best Places to Work in Vermont. This statewide award is designed to identify, recognize and honor the best places of employment in Vermont, benefiting the state’s economy, workforce and businesses.

Companies across Vermont were evaluated based on workplace policies, practices, philosophy, demographics and feedback from employees. The combined scores determined the top companies and final rankings.

“This recognition means a great deal to us. We have always taken pride in the respect our employees and residents have for each other,” states Nancy Rockett Eldridge, CEO, Cathedral Square Corporation. “We enjoy working together each day to enhance Vermont communities and the quality of life for many Vermonters.”

The annual list of the Best Places to Work in Vermont was created by Vermont Business Magazine, the Vermont Chamber of Commerce, the Vermont Department of Economic Development, the Vermont Department of Labor, the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) – Vermont State Council and Best Companies Group.



New, Affordable Senior Housing Complex Set to Begin Construction in Milton

Posted March 18, 2015 recently reported on a new, affordable senior housing complex in Milton that is set to begin construction later this year, spearheaded by Cathedral Square Corporation. To read more about it view the article and video footage below or here at their website:

When discussing who fits the mold for affordable housing in the region, senior citizens are not often at the top of the list.

Lyman Fox began using affordable housing in 2013. He went on disability in 2002, after he had a heart attack. He lives in Meadowlane Apartments with his partner, Jim Winters.

“It took 3 years, at least three years on the waiting list to get in here,” says Fox.

Meadowlane Apartments is the only affordable senior housing complex in Milton. The town has a 0% vacancy rate for the elderly demographic.

“There’s a waiting list on that existing senior housing complex of 65 people,” says Interim Town Manager Paul Bohne.

Milton is taking action to address Vermont’s ageing population. Construction is set to start on a new senior housing complex this November, funded through state and federal money. Cathedral Square Corporation will spearhead the project.

“It’s adjacent to the Milton Family Practice UVM Medical Center and right down the street from the Arrowhead Senior Center,” says Cathedral Square Developer Miranda Lescaze. “It’s walkable to the library, pharmacy, banks, etc.”

The 30 unit complex will cost $7.5 million to construct and will open in the spring of 2016.

“Nursing homes and healthcare costs all add up,” says Winters. “We need a place to call home.”

Cathedral Square deals strictly with affordable housing for seniors and those with disabilities. They currently have 24 communities across Chittenden County.


New Manufactured Home Lands in Shelburnewood Mobile Home Park

Posted March 6, 2015

Shelburnewood Mobile Home Park in Shelburne recently received a Vermod High Performance Home to serve as a model for one year before being sold to an income eligible buyer. The Vermod homes utilize high quality construction and the latest advances in energy efficient technology to provide households with units that will remain cost stable, unlike most traditional mobile homes. The article below from the Shelburne News gives more information on the project:

The Shelburne News received word from one of our loyal writers last Wednesday afternoon that a crane was delivering a new style of manufactured housing to the Shelburnewood Mobile Home Park in Shelburne. Once in the neighborhood, the crew associated with the new manufactured home’s delivery was on hand and more than happy to discuss its arrival and purpose.

“The project is a collaborative effort that includes but is not limited to the Vermont Housing & Conservation Board (VHCB), the High Meadows Fund, and Efficiency Vermont (EVT). Plus Shelburne architect David Pill of Pill-Maharam Architects, and Steve Davis and Chet Pasho from Vermod, the manufacturer, have been critical partners as well,” noted Cindy Reid, the Director of Development of Cathedral Square Corporation (CSC).

“The new arrival is part of the Manufactured Housing Innovation Project, a pilot project focused on developing new manufactured homes which addresses two needs: a response to the loss of homes during Tropical Storm Irene and to increase the supply of quality affordable housing in Vermont in general,” she offered. Though mobile homes represent only seven percent of Vermont’s housing stock, they comprised 15 percent of the homes damaged by Irene.

Built in White River Junction by Vermod High Performance Homes, the single wide mobile home in Shelburnewood is the 17th unit constructed and sited in Vermont. The new manufactured home utilizes quality construction and materials as well as the latest in highly efficient energy technology. All aspects of the design have been considered to provide the homeowner with the most comfort, value, and savings available.

“Cathedral Square is a non-profit organization which provides affordable housing and services for seniors and persons with disabilities,” Reid began. “CSC developed Wright House, a 36-unit affordable senior development next door in Harrington Village. We got involved initially when VHCB and EVT asked if our organization would consider purchasing a new Vermod unit located in Shelburnewood. The unit will serve as a model for one year and then be sold to an income eligible household,” she informed.

“VHCB, EVT and Vermod are interested in getting the word out about this innovative affordable home, so that it can be replicated in other communities,” Reid said. “Due to the style of construction, it is an appreciating (not depreciating) asset, which means Vermod homeowners can build equity. The energy usage is also low which equates to affordability for occupants. Many of the Vermods are constructed with a 6,000 kw solar pv array, which makes them zero net energy homes. We feel that this is one of many innovative solutions to the lack of affordable housing that challenges our communities.”

To take advantage of the open houses at the Shelburnewood Vermod planned in the near future look for updates in the Shelburne News. Interested community members are always welcome to visit, and learn more about this innovative, high performance home.

A link to the article is here.


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