Catholic Charities has new home | PostIndependent.com
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Catholic Charities has new home

Kay Vasilakis
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Catholic Charities serves the working poor and disabled, providing emergency financial assistance, a transitional housing program for homeless families and individuals, and specific programs for immigrants. Recently, St. Stephen’s Church was renovated to house five service agencies.”We were looking for a permanent location to own so that we could eliminate the expense of renting office space,” said Catholic Charities Executive Director Tom Ziemann. “We wanted a very visible location in Glenwood that was also on the bus route. We thought the old St. Stephen’s Church was an ideal choice. Since we didn’t have an immediate use for all the space in the building, I started to talk to the other faith-based social service agencies about creating a one-stop social service center for our clients. Since we all have a similar mission and our clients would benefit greatly, we moved forward with the Salvation Army, LIFT-UP and Feed My Sheep. Once Congregation and Schools Empowered (CASE), a local community organizing project, became a reality, we asked them to join us in the building as well.”We spend hours on the phone with each other and play phone tag endlessly. We would be more productive if we could just walk into the next office and just talk. It would also be great for our clients to come to one place instead of four. We will also have adequate space now for board meetings, community meetings and educational classes. Adding CASE made sense because in reality, CASE will address the root causes of social concerns in our community,” Ziemann said.St. Stephen’s Church was purchased by Catholic Charities in November 2004, and renovation of the church began in October 2005. The building had to be rewired and go through extensive architectural and city approval processes.”We tried to keep as much of the old church as possible,” said Ziemann. The transformation included knocking down the altar and building four offices on the main floor along with a combined waiting room, kitchenette, handicapped accessible restrooms, and the LIFT-UP Food Bank, and creating a mezzanine for four additional offices. Enter the new facility using the Tenth Street door. The main doors of the old church will be used as an emergency exit only.The Feed My Sheep Ministry is located in the basement. Clients use a separate entrance and do not use the upstairs offices.Emergency assistance hours for Salvation Army and Catholic Charities are from 9 a.m. to noon Monday through Friday. Clients who can’t make these walk-in times can schedule an appointment by calling Salvation Army at 945-6976 or Catholic Charities at 384-2060 or 945-5177. Catholic Charities Immigration Services is available by appointment only; call 945-9562. Immigrant Community Advocacy is available on an appointment basis, call 384-2060. The LIFT-UP food bank is open from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday through Friday; call 945-2005. Congregation and Schools Empowered can be contacted at 384-2060 or 945-5177. “Catholic Charities serves all people, not just Catholics,” concluded Ziemann. “We do not proselytize, we just help those in need.” Kay Vasilakis’ “Nonprofit Spotlight” appears every other Wednesday. She is the media coordinator for the Garfield County Human Services Commission. She can be contacted at 945-8515, ext. 513, or e-mail kvasilakis@postindependent. com.Catholic Charities at a Glancen When did Catholic Charities first start in Glenwood Springs? January 2000n What is the mission of Catholic Charities? Catholic Charities will help individuals, strengthen families and build communities. n How many clients served in 2005? More than 1,400 householdsn Executive director: Tom Ziemann, 384-2060 or 945-5177n New address: 1004 Grand Ave., Glenwood Springs, 7,000 square feetn How does someone donate to Catholic Charities? Donors can send check to Catholic Charities Western Slope, 1004 Grand Ave., Glenwood Springs, CO 81601 or online at http://www.catholiccharitiesdenver.org and click on the “Donate” button.


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