In 2021, the Catholic Foundation initiated its Catholic Social Ministry Grant opportunity to support ministries and projects that embrace and align with Catholic social teaching and are answering the Gospel call to respond to needs within the community.
One such ministry is Catholic Charities Counseling and Adoption Services (CCCAS). Faithful to Christ’s mission of love, CCCAS is serving communities throughout the Roman Catholic Diocese of Erie and meeting the needs of many in our communities who struggle with personal or family difficulties. Providing counseling services to clients in the outpatient setting for both mental health and drug and alcohol programs is an important part of their work. A percentage of their programming is provided to individuals or families who are unable to afford services elsewhere and lack the financial means to meet the required insurance co-pays or deductibles.
Seeking additional financial support for this important work, CCCAS applied for a Catholic Social Ministry Grant from the Catholic Foundation. Deacon Dick Brogdon, interim CEO, explained why it is vital to have resources available to help remove the financial barrier that limits treatment for some clients. “There are cases where, when scheduling follow-up sessions, a client is torn between their reality - the number of sessions they can afford versus the number of sessions recommended to get better. In drug and alcohol counseling especially, many clients are without means; they struggle to stay afloat and require a little extra help to keep it all together.”
The Catholic Social Ministries grant awarded to CCCAS provided funding needed to allow counselors to reach out during evaluation sessions and offer treatment plans to those that would not have been able to afford them otherwise. An added benefit was that the counselors found they were able to focus more on client counseling and worry less about covering costs. Deacon Brogdon said, “The grant allowed us to remove a barrier that limits treatment for some.” CCCAS provides their services with the understanding and belief that they are part of a larger Catholic social service framework dedicated to assisting those who are most in need.
Not everyone has the skills or opportunities to directly help people in need, but all of us can respond to those needs. Through the Catholic Foundation’s Catholic Social Ministry Grants, we can assist CCCAS and other organizations in meeting the real needs of the community in meaningful ways.
These grants are made possible through the vision and generosity of donors. Catholic Social Ministry grants are funded through the Foundation’s Catholic Charities Endowment. Donations designated for this endowment are gratefully received at any time and increases the Foundation’s capacity to award grants to fund impactful social ministry initiatives throughout northwest Pennsylvania.
“On behalf of the CCCAS staff of counselors and the many clients who benefitted from this grant, I offer a heartfelt thank you to the Catholic Foundation for your gift of charity to the works of the Church.”