Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Milwaukee, Inc.

Impact Stories

Our client's success is important to us. Here are real stories of people who have come to Catholic Charities for our programs and services. 




DJ and Kristi are a couple with a lot of love to give. When they heard about a mom in the community who was “struggling greatly,” and her children who suffered from abuse and neglect, they knew they had to help.

Working with the mom, DJ and Kristi first offered to babysit the girls on weekends. They hoped this would benefit both the mom and the girls. Their goal was to make sure the girls knew they were loved and in a safe environment. After seeing the girls thrive in their care, DJ and Kristi then offered to take the girls for weeklong intervals, which the mom readily accepted. The weeks turned into months, then became full-time care. Around this time, they proposed guardianship to the mom. She agreed and this arrangement lasted two years.

More than anything, DJ and Kristi knew the girls needed a permanent family unit, one that would allow the girls greater mental and physical well-being. This meant adoption. They began the process with Catholic Charities.

In 2023, the girls became a part of DJ and Kristi’s family through adoption. They are now members of the family in a legal sense, though they’ve always felt a part of it with the deep love that DJ and Kristi have given them.

Learn more about our Adoption Services





Hanady is a courageous woman who has risked her life for the happiness of her family. She and her husband were born in a country with rigid customs and severe penalties for not following traditional practices.

When their second child was about a year old, Hanady, her husband and children traveled to the U.S. They saw that they could live here in peace, escape strict rules and worship as they chose. Hanady stated, “I cannot go back. You can get killed for changing religions.” This began their long journey to seek asylum, and a friend suggested they contact Catholic Charities Refugee & Immigration Services for support.

That was fifteen years ago. Their family has since grown and embraced American culture. Their oldest daughter is now an EMT and firefighter. Their younger children are middle and high school students.

They are hopeful that their asylum request will be approved this spring. Hanady says, “My family really appreciates Ms. Barb and the Catholic Charities team. They are doing a great job!” For her family, she says, “Thank God, we are safe in the U.S.!”

Learn more about Refugee & Immigration Services.




Scared and anxious, Ana desperately needed relief. She had escaped an abusive household, but still felt powerless. She suffered deep emotional pain, and it was difficult to care for her two young children. She remembers thinking, “Por qué me está pasando esto?” [Why is this happening to me?]

Without a support system, Ana felt unsure about her children’s future. They faced other challenges, too, including limited finances and a language barrier. Physically and emotionally worn down, her health began to suffer which was difficult for her family.

Then Ana felt a spark of hope. She met a domestic violence advocate who referred her to Catholic Charities. With the help of a bilingual therapist, she began talking about her trauma and exploring healthier ways to manage her thoughts and feelings. She focused on her own well-being.

Gradually, Ana saw improvements in her self-esteem and self-confidence. A new job helped her feel more productive while her family regained financial stability. If you ask Ana what she feels best about, she’ll tell you, “Ahora soy una mejor madre. Puedo cuidar de mis hijos.” [I am a better mom now. I can take care of my children.]

Learn more about Community Counseling Services




Moms and daughters have a special connection that goes beyond words, just like Lois and her mom Verlean. When Lois felt her mom needed a little more care during the day, she turned to Catholic Charities and the personalized services offered at the Adult Day Center. Lois’s aunt was once a member of the Adult Day Center (ADC) and she remembered that her time with Catholic Charities was such a wonderful experience.

“After I took a tour, I knew this was the right place for my mom — every staff member is just so kind and dedicated. Plus, the center looks and feels like a home,” says Lois. “Most of all, I really appreciate that she’s cared for in such a loving way.”

While arts and crafts are Verlean’s favorite pastime, she also listens to live music played by a visiting harpist and violinist at the ADC, plays board games and relaxes with magazines from a local library. The center is safe, comfortable and stimulating. Verlean loves it.

“The Adult Day Center’s goal is to keep our seniors living in their own homes longer,” says Annette, Director of Adult Day Services, “and a healthy daytime environment definitely helps.” For Verlean and Lois, this means so much.

Learn more about Adult Day Services




“I was so scared,” says Bailey. Five months pregnant with twins, she began experiencing serious health issues. But that wasn’t all. With limited finances, she worried she couldn’t get medical help.

Both physically and mentally exhausted, a local hospital referred her to Catholic Charities where she met a pregnancy support worker who encouraged her to focus on her health.

Eight months into her pregnancy, Bailey delivered a little boy and a girl. But unfortunately, her little boy had health complications. After her Catholic Charities case worker let her know how important nutrition and creating loving parent-child bonds were, she visited the hospital each day to nurse her son. “Despite the setbacks she’s experienced,” says her support worker, “Bailey tries to stay positive which is a great asset for her family.”

Today, Bailey is successfully navigating the demands of life with a new job, child care for her twins, and the support of Catholic Charities. She feels renewed strength and resilience, and proudly says, “I want to stay strong for my family.”

Learn more about Pregnancy & Parenting Support Services




Camila has a big heart. She wants to solve her own problems but often finds it difficult. As a child, she remembers struggling in school, not being able to grasp what others seemed to understand so quickly.

This was even more apparent when she became a mom. Understanding her daughter’s needs was difficult, and without support from family and friends, she was scared to make big decisions. She was overwhelmed by the responsibility.

Then Camila was referred to Catholic Charities. Working with both Camila and her children, a Family Support Worker made sure her family received the resources they needed. Camila learned better ways to communicate and how to parent with more structure. With guidance, she’s now able to capture details from school meetings and doctor appointments.

After two years with Catholic Charities, Camila says, “It has been really hard work, but I feel so much better about myself as a person and as a mother. We are happy.”

Learn more about Supported Parenting Services




Paul and Tina love one another deeply. They share, as many couples do, similar interests and enjoy spending time together. But over time, they saw that clutter was taking over their apartment. Floor to ceiling, their home was packed with items they didn’t need every day. It was just one of the signs of hoarding disorder.

When state health inspectors ordered Paul and Tina to clear the clutter in their home or be evicted, the couple knew they needed help. Their landlord recommended they contact Catholic Charities.

Paul and Tina were matched with a Home Coach who made them more aware of safety issues. Together, they cleared hallways and their kitchen. Their Home Coach helped them understand hoarding has an emotional component too. Paul and Tina were connected with a therapist so they could better manage their emotions when it came to their possessions. The couple now focuses on better organization and discarding items.

“If it’s overflowing onto the floor, then we don’t need it,” says Tina. “We don’t want to go back — we’re moving forward.”

Learn more about our Hoarding Intervention & Treatment Services





A quiet, humble guy, Jack says, “I’ve always been independent. I can take care of myself.” An immigrant from Shanghai, China, he’s worked hard his whole life. He was the proud owner of a Chinese restaurant in his early years. When he retired, he thought life would get easier. Living in a rural area, he took long walks and enjoyed the nature around him.

But the quiet retired life Jack so fondly dreamt of ended abruptly. Sitting outside of his apartment, he was a victim of a shooting spree which also harmed three others. He sustained an injury that required three months of hospitalization. While he healed, his rent accrued.

Threatened with losing his home, Jack reached out to several organizations for help, but was rejected. Then he saw a Catholic Charities flyer in the community. The very same case worker who distributed the flyer met with Jack and provided much-needed guidance. She arranged for pro bono legal services and coordinated support from local groups. Working with the landlord, an attorney developed a payment plan.

Throughout the process, Catholic Charities was his constant - by his side through every step. Relieved he could keep his home, Jack is sincere when he says, “I am so very thankful.”

Learn more about Outreach & Case Management Services


Catholic Charities

Mailing Address: PO Box 070912
                            Milwaukee, WI 53207-0912

Delivery Address: 3501 S. Lake Drive
                             St. Francis, WI 53235

Office Locations and Phone Numbers

Serving our neighbors in need in Dodge, Fond du Lac, Milwaukee, Ozaukee, Racine, Kenosha, Sheboygan, Walworth, Washington and Waukesha Counties.


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