May 12, 2023

Our Works of Charity / David Bethuram

Celebrating moms who work hard to overcomes life’s challenges

David Bethuram

During the month of May, Catholic Charities is focusing on celebrating mothers (and fathers!) and the vital role they play in shaping our lives. With your support, Catholic Charities is able to provide assistance to mothers and fathers in need and make a positive difference in their lives.

For pregnant women and new parents without a reliable place to live or access to basic necessities like diapers and health care, Catholic Charities is a source of support.

Many women and girls who find themselves in need—whether due to financial hardship, lack of education, or feelings of fear and isolation—turn to Catholic Charities’ agencies for help, often referred to us by friends or the court system.

The pregnancy services provided by Catholic Charities are comprehensive and include confirming a woman’s pregnancy, distributing essentials like diapers, wipes and baby clothes, offering parenting classes and early childhood education, and providing full medical care, behavioral health counseling, possible mentoring, home visits, housing for those experiencing homelessness, and adoption services. These services have a significant impact on the lives of those who use them, whether they are already parenting or considering adoption.

One such success story is that of “Carla” (not her real name) a homeless single mother with two children who came to Catholic Charities seeking assistance. Despite her challenging history—including past incarceration and addiction issues—she was determined to be a good mother and not relapse into addiction.

Her case manager at Catholic Charities helped her access a variety of support services, including therapy, addiction recovery, vocational rehabilitation, and budgeting and life skills classes.

With the help of Catholic Charities, Carla was able to turn her life around, completing the terms of her probation, fixing her credit, finding full-time employment and even receiving a raise after her first year on the job.

When it comes to working with women and children in crisis, there are numerous complexities to consider. Each situation is unique, and Catholic Charities’ committed staff understands that success means different things to different individuals and families. What may work for one woman may not work for another, and predicting outcomes can be challenging.

Our dedicated staff works tirelessly to support mothers and families in crisis, providing the resources and guidance they need to make healthy decisions and achieve their goals.

(David Bethuram is executive director of the archdiocesan Secretariat for Catholic Charities. You can contact him at †

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