Through our Parish Social Ministry, we build effective partnerships with parishes in order to help organize and carry out works of charity in local communities. As a social service provider, Catholic Charities West Virginia (CCWVa) fosters social ministries in parishes by providing education and guidance, acting as a fiscal agent, providing professional social service knowledge, and assisting in a variety of other ways.
In our Southern Region, we have empowered St. Francis de Sales Parish to provide outreach
services. Parish volunteers staff the Beckley outreach office, which provides basic needs assistance to Raleigh county residents in need. Parish member and volunteer Deena Salon said, “I’m grateful to have the opportunity to help our community through Catholic Charities. We are all called to serve, and this is one of many ways that parishioners can give their time and make a true difference.”
A partnership with St. Anthony Parish in our Western Region will enable the parish to provide an outreach program for seniors. CCWVa and St. Anthony parishioners recognized a gap in services for the elderly, and parishioners wanted to use their parish hall to better their community and help those who are vulnerable. CCWVa will coordinate the effort and collaborate with Kanawha Valley Senior Services to provide health and wellness classes for the elderly.
Deacon Dave Galvin of St. James Catholic Church has been involved in several collaborations between parishes and CCWVa. He said, “Linking parishes and CCWVa closer together can provide the opportunity for people who want to give with a very clear avenue of doing so.”
Most recently, Deacon Galvin facilitated a unique donation from an upscale department store that wished to donate its returned merchandise. Deacon Galvin coordinated this donation with the department store, which wishes to remain anonymous, and the CCWVa Webster Springs thrift store. The donation included over 100 lamps, 50 chairs, ottomans, headboards, coffee tables, and more. Tina Cogar, CCWVa Outreach Coordinator, said
this donation was a “game changer.”
“We have always been able to offer
wonderful gently used clothing for the entire family, but now we have so much more,” said Cogar.
Kate Kosydar, CCWVa Parish Social Ministry Coordinator, noted that building relationships is important to the mission of CCWVa and to our mission as Jesus’ disciples. “These stories are great examples of communities of people coming together to strengthen their relationships with their brothers and sisters in Christ. They’re not empty hand-outs; but rather, we are setting the stage to love one another as God loves us.”