I am pleased to announce that on this Ash Wednesday, a special collection will be taken up in every parish across the Archdiocese of Boston in support of Catholic Charities, launching our Live Your Faith, Love Your Faith campaign.
As winter wears on, times get tougher for those in need in our community. When the temperatures drop, snow piles, fevers, and utility costs rise. In many cases, those among us struggling to make ends meet are forced to do without.
Now more than ever, we at Catholic Charities are called to action. And, with your help, we can be the helping hand that so many need when winter is at its bleakest.
It is with these urgent needs in mind that I am pleased to announce that on this Ash Wednesday, a special collection will be taken up in every parish across the Archdiocese of Boston in support of Catholic Charities, launching our Live Your Faith, Love Your Faith campaign.
Through the Live Your Faith, Love Your Faith campaign, we hope to inspire donors and volunteers of all ages to engage with their faith and be the change that they hope to see in their communities this Lenten season.
For 115 years, Catholic Charities of Boston has worked to serve nearly 200,000 of our neediest neighbors annually throughout Eastern Massachusetts. As one of the largest providers of social services in Massachusetts, we stand with those less fortunate than ourselves and provide a wide variety of aid to those in need.
Our services include shelters for the homeless, quality early childhood education, outreach programs for at-risk youth, food pantries, utility assistance, and English as a Second Language (ESL) classes, among many other wonderful programs seeking to provide a hand up.
At Catholic Charities, it is common for one individual client or their family to receive multiple services from us. One such client is a single mother of two living in Dorchester, whom we'll call Lisa.
After becoming too sick to work, Lisa lost her job as a housekeeper. When she fell behind on gas payments, Lisa turned to us at Catholic Charities. When her case manager realized Lisa also had a very low budget for food and two small mouths to feed, he brought Lisa over to one of our food pantries.
There, she was able to get nutritious food for herself and her children. Once Lisa participated in financial planning sessions to help her effectively manage her budget and get back on her feet, she needed to find a new job, which brought another obstacle. Who would care for her two young children while she looked for work? Lisa was then introduced to Sister Esther and the Yawkey Center Child Care, where she could enroll her children in high quality, nurturing, and academically enriching child care while she looked for a job.
Today, Lisa works as a Home Health Aide. Her children are thriving at Yawkey Center Child Care, with her oldest daughter preparing for kindergarten in the fall.
While stories like Lisa's are incredibly common, budget restrictions limit the services we are able to offer. With the support and generosity of our community, we can work towards helping every individual who walks through our doors.
When you support Catholic Charities, you are supporting your community. You too can answer the call: live your faith, love your faith.
On behalf of those we serve, thank you in advance for your generosity. Together we can change lives for the better.
For more information, please visit www.ccab.org and follow our progress on social media using the hashtag #livelovefaith.
Deborah Kincade Rambo is president of Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Boston.