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Bridging the New Year with Catholic Charities

As this year comes to an end and we begin to look at what a new year might look like, we are reminded who we cross this bridge with and what we hope for on the other side. We are grateful to be bridging the new year with you and we hope for another safe year serving neighbors in need.

Letter From the Board of Trustees

Dear Staff of Catholic Charities-
On behalf of the Board of Trustees, I am writing to thank each of you for your unwavering commitment in caring for your clients and those in need in our community. Your great work is deeply appreciated - especially during this unsettling time. Putting your clients' needs ahead of your own is a testament to why this agency has been able to serve our community for 100 years.
COVID-19 has created many challenges for all of us. And yet, we have witnessed each of you going above and beyond your normal responsibilities. Your graceful and determined commitment to your clients, regardless of the circumstances, is truly inspiring!
Your efforts have not gone unnoticed. It has been our great pleasure to watch you help transform the lives of your clients. We thank you, and we appreciate you very much!
As we enter this Holiday season, our very best to you and your loved ones.
Sincerely,

Share Warmth Winter Giving

Through our Winter Giving program we have built relationships and trust that will make it easier for our neighbors to reach out to us during their times of need. We have introduced new clients to Catholic Charities and helped them to meet their needs and made them aware of the Professional Social Services that we have available. We have partnered, organized, and distributed thousands of items this season. We should all be proud of the work that has been done on the Coat Drive, Food Pantry, and the Human Services that have been given back to the community through Catholic Charities!

Meet our New Staff!

Kaci Eisch, Advancement Assistant, CAO, Melissa Manganello, Hoarding Therapist, MAO

Kaci obtained her degree this past spring at Alverno College, majoring in Communication with a minor in Business Management. She first joined Catholic Charities as a Social Media Intern and is now an assistant to the Advancement team. Her love for non-profits came from her prior internship at the Ronald McDonald House, which allowed her to really see the impact her work can have. “I love knowing that what I’m doing is making a difference.” Kaci resides in Milwaukee with her family, which includes her silly, yet adorable golden doodle Kody. Whenever she is not at CC, she is waitressing at Capri di Nuovo, a small Italian restaurant in West Allis. In her free time, Kaci likes to read, catch the latest Netflix show, and hang out with her friends.

Melissa received her Master’s degree in Social Work from UWM. Her passion for helping people improve their mental health is why she was drawn to social work. She says that her time at Catholic Charities has been a wonderful experience, from the warm welcome, to the culture at the offices. She also shares: “Working with individuals with Hoarding Disorders is new for me; it is a unique challenge, and it feels good to be part of a team that provides access to services to this population.” Melissa has two sons, ages 12 and 9. Her favorite thing to do with them is play sports and listen to them play instruments (drums, piano, ukulele, and guitar). Over the summer she picked up gardening and looks forward to spring so she can start planting again.

Jennifer Rodewald, Therapist, WAO, Kimberly Schreiber, Immigration Attorney, RIS

Jennifer graduated with a MS in Clinical Mental Health Counseling at Marquette University. Before that, she worked in specialty coffee for 15 years. She has always been interested in psychology and mental health and gravitated towards these as a career after dealing with her own struggles with infertility. She loves learning about new people and how their experiences shape who they are today. As well as, helping them to see strengths and resiliencies in themselves they may not have been aware of! Outside of work, she loves spending time with her spouse and her daughter, reading, being outside, laughing and tacos!

Kimberly graduated from Notre Dame Law School in the Spring of 2020. Kimberly's passion for immigration law began in law school. After having coffee with Barb Graham, Director of Legal Services for Immigrants, she offered to help with a fellowship proposal and received a grant to work in immigration law at Catholic Charities. In her free time she enjoys baking, traveling, and spending time with her dog Bailey! She used to build sets for theater and loves that Catholic Charities has been a collaborative and supportive workplace!

Rebecca Pyaohn, Accountant, CAO, Selene Alanis, Accounting Assistant, CAO, Rebekah Czarnecki, Case Manager In-Home Support, MAO

Rebecca received her BS in Accounting at Northeastern Illinois University and her MS in Management at DePaul University. Before joining Catholic Charities, she worked with The Salvation Army in Chicago. Rebecca shares that she was born in Myanmar but had to move to a refugee camp in Thailand at the age of seven. She and her family came to the United States in 2006 through a refugee resettlement program. She says that when she first arrived in the U.S she received much assistance from programs similar to what our agency offers. What she loves about working with Catholic Charities is her office mates and knowing the fact that the work she does helps further the mission of the organization. Rebecca shares: “I feel privileged and grateful to be able to do what I love at an organization that brings hope to people.”

Selene is a part-time student in her third year at Mount Mary University where she is pursuing her Undergraduate degree. She shares that she loves working at a non-profit agency that serves many needs for people in Milwaukee and the surrounding communities. She admires that the agency, among its many services, provides refugee and legal services, and behavioral health services. Selene has a twin sister (Stephanie Alanis who also works with Catholic Charities), three younger sisters and her favorite place to visit is Sedona, Arizona!

Rebekah graduated with a bachelors in Psychology and a Mental Health Skills certificate from UW-Parkside. She worked as a server at The Wisconsin Club for 8 years prior to joining us at Catholic Charities. In her spare time, she enjoys relaxing with her new fiancé Tim and their pets-two dogs and two cats. Rebekah says "I love working at Catholic Charities, the office feels like home and the work I do makes me feel like I'm making a difference in our community!

Staff Photos

Thank you all for your hard work and dedication these past few months!

Inspiring the Future

Quinn, the 9 year old nephew of Courtney from Catholic Charities, Hoarding Intervention and Treatment Program saw the hard work his Aunt was putting into the community and started to think of his own way to help. He worried that there were children in our community who may have to go without this Christmas so he initiated a toy drive to get new toys to give to neighbors in need. During this drive, his family experienced a house fire and was displaced from their home. Despite his own hardships, Quinn was more driven then ever to complete his toy drive. Quinn gathered toys through a donation box in front of his grandparents' home and then delivered the toys to our Waukesha Area office with the help of his Mom and his Aunt Courtney. In the past, Quinn and his family have organized to collect food and assist with our food drive to help those who were impacted by COVID-19 and he is always working with us to better the community around him.

"This young man has truly been a guardian angel for Catholic Charities and our mission" Sarah Matson shares.

We are proud to see our mission being understood and implemented by someone as young as Quinn and know that with Quinn already on our team the future of Catholic Charities is in good hands.

Created By
Rianna Garza
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