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St. Clair County Illinois Catholic Charities assistance programs.

Catholic Charities works with the less fortunate and low income in East Saint Louis as well as St. Clair, Alexander, and Pulaski County. The organization will try to provide food, clothing, homeless prevention services, job training and other support to families in the community. Examples of their assistance programs can be found below.

St. Vincent de Paul Society works with Catholic Urban Programs in order to help minimize the suffering of senior citizens, the poor, the elderly, unemployed, and the homeless in East St. Louis, Illinois. Some of what is offered includes free emergency food, shelter, and financial assistance. They also offer case management and advocacy services. The agency has also tried to continue to increase the number and depth of their services as the economy has weakened. To learn more about the assistance programs offered, call Catholic Urban Programs. They operate out of an office at #7 Vieux Carre Drive, East St. Louis, Illinois 62203. Dial 618-398-5616.

Holy Angels Shelter, provide short term housing and shelter for women, women with children, and intact families. Men can also be housed in portions of the site as well. Homeless or recently evicted families can stay there, and get out of the cold winter or hot summer months. Food, a hot meal, and other support may be provided too.

The Family Center was created by Diocese of Belleville as well as the Family Center of Catholic Urban Programs. This is a social service, charity agency that provides a comprehensive support system and assistance programs for low income families residing in East St. Louis, IL. Programs and resources offered are individualized to meet family needs and include assistance in addressing medical needs, education, personal development, job training, assistance with housing, employment opportunities, and other basic needs and life essentials.

DayStar Community Program offers food and other support. The center responds to the needs of people from all religions, faiths and income levels residing in Pulaski and Alexander counties in Southern Illinois. The Catholic Charity DayStar program provides services such as Outreach Program, Madeline’s Mart, Food Pantry, The Kitchen Table, and other special programs.





-The Catholic Charity Outreach Program provides on-going, short-term assistance to families and persons in need. Assistance may include financial help, funds for paying utilities and heating bills, assistance with rent, prescription medicines, and transportation.

Case managers can also provide counseling and advocacy where applicable. Much of the support is given in the form of referrals, as Catholic Charities can serve as a source of information on local St. Clair County financial aid programs. Whether it is rent, electric bill help, or medical needs, information may be offered as part of Outreach.

-Madeline’s Mart offers household items and clothing to low income families and children in need of help. While some items are free, others may be sold at a nominal price for families or others who stop by.

-Catholic Charity Food Pantry – The center provides groceries and supplements for families or individuals who are in need of groceries or food.

-The Kitchen Table is a free hot meal site or soup kitchen that supplements families in need of perishable items, free food, groceries, and a nourishing meal. Catholic Charities in St. Clair will provide this service for the homeless, poor, and anyone in need of a meal.

-Special Programs, including seasonal, are offered too. For example, call Catholic Charities for information on free Thanksgiving or Christmas Day meals. These can be delivered to seniors, the homebound and handicapped individuals who have no family or no place to spend the holiday. The Christmas Program is designed for families and children who are less fortunate. The DayStar program also provides toys, gift certificates, food baskets and more when available, with a focus on Christmas aid.

Call the Daystar Community Programs, 909 Washington Street, Cairo, Illinois 62914, at 618-734-0178 for more information.




St. Vincent de Paul Society Diocese of Belleville and Catholic Charities can provide outreach services to the working poor, sick, aged imprisoned, etc. This includes limited amounts of financial assistance for bills, rent, and emergencies. Other services include thrift stores and charitable collections. Another option is to stop by and use the local food pantry, Cosgrove's Kitchen (soup kitchen) and a traveling soup bus.

Employment services are offered as part of the Job Advantage Program. This program will evaluates and prepares unemployed persons and individual who are receiving Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF), and it can help them with job placement services.

If this option does not work, there are other statewide options available, such as the Illinois senior programs which are run by Agency on Aging Centers in the state. They are for older adults (such as people over the age of 55) that are looking to re-enter the workforce.

Call Catholic Urban Programs at 618-398-5616 for more information on these services.




By Jon McNamara

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