I am so very pleased to share with you my experience with Catholic Charities of Northwest Florida. Many people think that this agency only serves people of the Roman Catholic faith. Nothing could be further from the truth. Catholic Charities serves based on need, not creed.
Many people only know the agency through Christmas Connection and still others did not even realize that Christmas Connection is a program of Catholic Charities. This is only one of the programs and services offered by Catholic Charities. “Providing Help, Creating Hope, Serving All” is the mantra, and this is why I got involved in the first place.
Catholic Charities is one of the major agencies in Tallahassee that truly helps the most vulnerable people in our community. People hit hard times. A lot of people are only one paycheck away from being unable to pay rent, utilities, or buy food for their families. Catholic Charities is that safety net for them. Catholic Charities offers people a hand up. Not only are people offered financial help with bills and food for their families, one of the programs, Circles, provides financial literacy training for clients to help families lift themselves out of poverty.
Our country continues to address the issue of immigration. There are many families and individuals that are persecuted for their beliefs in their home countries. Catholic Charities offers a safe haven for them. The Tallahassee office is currently helping many of these immigrant families escape persecution, providing them with a place to live, with necessary furniture and supplies, and enrolling the children in school. Overall, we assist the families in their new start in a new country and community.
The program that Tallahassee is well aware of is Christmas Connection—and it is amazing! In 2013, we provided Christmas to more than 600 families—600 families that would not have had Christmas otherwise. Working at the facility, adopting a family, and making donations are great opportunities for us to learn about the need in our community. Christmas Connection has grown over the years. Catholic Charities works with case managers from over 60 community agencies to identify recipients. It takes hundreds of volunteers make this program possible.
I have been involved with Christmas Connection for over a decade, and my involvement is nothing compared to that of many other volunteers. When my children were young, we volunteered together, and they learned about the importance of helping those less fortunate than themselves. Christmas Connection families make a wish list; many people think it is all about electronics and fancy items, but the lists are filled with basic needs, including clothing, food, and toiletries. In delivering Christmas to the families you are filled with a feeling that is hard to describe.
As a Friend of Catholic Charities, I have gained so much more than I have given. My main duty is to help raise awareness of our programs, to raise money needed to run the programs, and to offer my assistance to further the mission of Catholic Charities.
Won’t you join me? You can help by adopting a family during the Christmas Connection. Several brokerages have adopted families over the years. I challenge all of the real estate brokerages in Tallahassee to adopt a family. Please contact me if you have any questions: email@example.com.
2014 Secretary, TBR
Armor Realty of Tallahassee