Sharing the Light

Sharing the Light 2011-2012

Catholic Charities of SE Michigan Frequently Asked Questions

FAQ about Catholic Charities

  1. Where are the current Catholic social services agencies in southeast Michigan? What services do they offer?
  2. What is the relationship between these agencies and the Archdiocese of Detroit? What is the organizational structure?
  3. How many individuals and families are served by Catholic social services agencies in southeast Michigan each year?
  4. How are these agencies funded and what is their overall budget?
  5. How many staff and volunteers are involved with these agencies?
  6. Will this reorganization involve layoffs?
  7. Are these money-driven decisions?
  8. What is the Archbishop's vision regarding one regional Catholic charities organization replacing separate county-based agencies?
  9. What factors will determine services to be offered on a regional basis?
  10. Are the programs and services provided by the current Catholic social services agencies falling short in those regards?
  11. Are there any new programmatic or service delivery possibilities that meet these standards?
  12. What is the difference between the five Catholic social service agencies that have an affiliation with the Archdiocese and other Catholic charitable organizations in southeast Michigan like crisis pregnancy centers, counseling services, food banks, and programs to help the homeless?
  13. Will this process affect parish-based social services?
  14. Is Archdiocese downsizing its social services presence in Wayne County?

1. Where are the current Catholic social services agencies in southeast Michigan? What services do they offer?

Five Catholic social services agencies coordinate programs and services in the six counties of the Archdiocese of Detroit:

Catholic Charities of Monroe County
14930 Laplaisance Road; Monroe MI 48161
  • Head Start (classrooms in Carleton, Monroe, Petersburg, and Temperance)
  • Mental health counseling; anger management counseling
  • Parenting support services
  • Substance abuse treatment
Catholic Services of Macomb and Lapeer Counties
15945 Canal, Clinton Township, MI 48038
  • Offices in Clinton Township, Warren, Lapeer and Romeo. Adult Day Services in Clinton Township and in Warren
  • Behavioral health services include individual and family therapy, marriage counseling, and substance abuse screening, testing, and treatment
  • Pregnancy, parenting, and adoption services
  • Volunteer services include a Senior Companion Program, as well as a Retired and Senior Volunteer Program
  • Immigration and Refugee services
Catholic Social Services of Oakland County
1424 East 11 Mile, Royal Oak, MI 48067
  • Offices in Auburn Hills, Pontiac, Royal Oak, Southfield, and Waterford
  • Adoption and foster care services
  • Individual, family, and group counseling including substance abuse services
  • Hispanic outreach including English language classes
  • Older adult, caregiver, and volunteer services
  • Parenting classes including teen parenting support
Catholic Social Services of St. Clair County
2601 13th Street, Port Huron, MI 48060
  • Systemic Training for Effective Parenting (STEP)
  • Children and youth counseling
  • Family and adult services
  • Substance abuse counseling
  • Older adult services
Catholic Social Services of Wayne County
9851 Hamilton Avenue, Detroit, MI 48202
  • Offices in Dearborn Heights, Grosse Pointe Park, and Taylor
  • Adoption and adoption search services; foster family care
  • Family life education and mental health counseling
  • Older adult care; foster grandparent program
  • Senior Companion Program; Retired and Senior Volunteer Program
  • Substance abuse treatment and prevention

2. What is the relationship between these agencies and the Archdiocese of Detroit? What is the organizational structure?

The five Catholic social services agencies that operate in the six counties that comprise the Archdiocese of Detroit are separate 501(c)(3) organizations that are part of the Archdiocese. Each agency currently has a local management team and governing board.

Effective April 1, Archbishop Vigneron has appointed Msgr. Charles Kosanke, current Chair of the Board for Catholic Charities of Oakland County, as Board Chair of the new Catholic Charities of Southeast Michigan (CCSEM). The Archbishop will appoint other CCSEM board members as reorganization efforts progress.

Also effective April 1, the Archbishop has appointed Thomas J. Reed as Interim Director of CCSEM. Mr. Reed brings 15 years of experience as president and CEO of Catholic Services of Macomb and Lapeer. Reporting to Archbishop Vigneron, Mr. Reed will hold this position for the next several months.

3. How many individuals and families are served by Catholic social services agencies in southeast Michigan each year?

Archdiocesan Catholic social services agencies in southeast Michigan serve more than 20,000 individuals and families annually.

4. How are these agencies funded and what is their overall budget?

The five agencies operating in the six counties of the Archdiocese of Detroit currently have a combined annual operating budget of approximately $20 million per year.

United Way of Southeast Michigan has been a significant source of funding in the past, although that has changed in recent years. In 2008, United Way funding totaled about $3.5 million to Catholic agencies in metro Detroit. United Way funding to these agencies has been reduced dramatically to under $1 million. As yet, no new funds have been allocated beyond June 30, 2011.

The agencies also receive revenue through state and federal grants for administering programs such as Head Start and foster care. Third party health insurance, charitable giving, and fees for service are other sources of funding.

5. How many staff and volunteers are involved with these agencies?

More than 250 staff and hundreds of volunteers support archdiocesan Catholic social services efforts in southeast Michigan.

6. Will this reorganization involve layoffs?

It is anticipated that efficiencies can be realized by centralizing leadership and shared administrative services including information technology, human resources, and fundraising.

Some positions may be eliminated as the five agencies than now operate on a county-by-county basis are transformed into a regional Catholic Charities model providing coordinated programs and services throughout southeast Michigan. This will enable the new CCSEM to maximize resources for service delivery to individuals and families in need.

7. Are these money-driven decisions?

Financial considerations are a factor, but not the only factor. Each of the five agencies is facing financial and operational challenges. Operating expenses are rising, and traditional sources of revenue such as United Way are changing.

Regardless of monetary considerations, Catholic social services should be consistently delivered throughout the Archdiocese of Detroit in a manner that is distinctively and uniquely Catholic.

Efforts to promote greater coordination and integration of Catholic social services agencies have been discussed in the Archdiocese for many years. In September 2009, a task force appointed by Archbishop Vigneron to assess archdiocesan administrative operations recommended restructuring Catholic charities organizations to sharpen the focus of mission-driven programs, move to a regional service delivery model, and connect more closely with parishes and vicariates in the Archdiocese.

8. What is the Archbishop's vision regarding one regional Catholic charities organization replacing separate county-based agencies?

Archbishop Vigneron is emphasizing the development of a mission-driven, regional plan with a unified vision in which uniquely Catholic services meet clearly defined human needs in southeast Michigan utilizing all available resources, including volunteers.

After consulting with priests and lay leadership throughout the Archdiocese, the Archbishop believes the Catholic social services reorganization should reconnect archdiocesan services with parishes and vicariates throughout the Archdiocese to prioritize services, ensure a distinctly Catholic approach to delivering those services, and avoid duplicating services with other agencies. It is timely to reconfigure social service efforts in the Archdiocese with the Together in Faith pastoral planning process now involving every parish and K-8 Catholic school in southeast Michigan.

It is anticipated that the plan will respectfully embrace more than 60 years of history and tradition in archdiocesan Catholic social services, precisely declare what Catholic Charities of Southeast Michigan is, continue to do what is currently being done well, change for the better that which should be improved, and phase out services that are being duplicated.

9. What factors will determine services to be offered on a regional basis?

The first consideration will be to ensure that all services are consistent with the authentic teachings of the Catholic Church, its moral convictions, and religious beliefs. These teachings include the fundamental and comprehensive respect for the dignity of life and the individual.

The values and objectives of CCSEM will promote the value of life, lessen human suffering, and respect human dignity.

This framework is the road map for the various decisions, challenges, and actions to transform the current structure to a Catholic Charities organization driven by values, mission, and vision. Services will be reviewed to determine whether they promote the mission and vision, and whether they support good stewardship and business principles.

10. Are the programs and services provided by the current Catholic social services agencies falling short in those regards?

The primary challenge is determining on a regional basis the social services and charitable outreach activities that are unique to our vision, decidedly supportive of Catholic values, and delivered consistently throughout the six counties that comprise the Archdiocese of Detroit.

To varying degrees, the current Catholic social service agencies provide individual and family counseling, as well as senior services, adoption support, and foster care. These and all of the other programs and services currently offered will be reviewed on the basis of whether each service is uniquely Catholic and if they can or should be offered in all six counties that comprise the Archdiocese of Detroit.

11. Are there any new programmatic or service delivery possibilities that meet these standards?

Many ideas will be considered through the reorganization process. Possibilities include opportunities in regional crisis pregnancy services, adoption services, parenting classes, and immigration and refugee resettlement services.

12. What is the difference between the five Catholic social service agencies that have an affiliation with the Archdiocese and other Catholic charitable organizations in southeast Michigan like crisis pregnancy centers, counseling services, food banks, and programs to help the homeless?

The five county-based Catholic social services agencies in the six counties of the Archdiocese are multi-faceted outreach and support programs to help people in need and were formed with the intent of meeting county needs. Some of these agencies have already established a regional affiliation, as is the case with Catholic Services of Macomb and Catholic Services of Lapeer.

While each of the county-based Catholic social services agencies has a management team and board, they remain accountable to the Archbishop to be good stewards of the resources entrusted to their care.

There are many other Catholic charitable efforts in southeast Michigan with varying degrees of relationships with the Archdiocese and local parishes. These programs and services tend to address specific community needs.

The Archbishop's call is to work together, share resources, and focus on bringing hope and healing to those in need on a consistent basis throughout southeast Michigan.

13. Will this process affect parish-based social services?

Archbishop Vigneron wants to ensure that parish-based Christian services and regional Catholic charity efforts are coordinated, mutually supportive, and do not duplicate efforts. The regional reorganization now underway is intended to make Catholic charitable services more efficient, more responsive to the needs of communities through southeast Michigan, and more closely coordinated with parishes.

The reorganization process will facilitate determining the resources needed for each service or program, to identify and engage partnerships that uphold Catholic values and teachings, and to find sustainable funding streams that are compatible and consistent with Catholic values.

Many other dioceses in the nation coordinate their corporal works of mercy through charitable and social services under a united service delivery model providing regional program delivery.

14. Is Archdiocese downsizing its social services presence in Wayne County?

The Archdiocese is engaged in regional planning and resource-generation efforts to address shifting populations and strengthen the presence of parishes, Catholic schools, and social services outreach in Wayne County, and throughout all six counties that comprise the Archdiocese of Detroit. The outcome of the Catholic social services reorganization will be improved regional service delivery through programs addressing specific sets of needs in a distinctly Catholic context.

Parishes and schools throughout the Archdiocese are collaborating in the Together in Faith pastoral planning process to strengthen their utilization of existing resources with recommendations to be made to Archbishop Vigneron by the end of this year.

To generate new resources, dozens of parishes, including many in Detroit and Wayne County, are now participating in the Changing Lives Together capital stewardship initiative.