New name but the same Care
|Members of the CCSS Executive (from left): Otto Henfling, Deacon Tony Hoban, Cecily Spradbrow, Fr Phil Medlin CSsR, Ann O’Brien. Absent – Cathy Tracey.|
Centacare has become CatholicCare – but the Care is still there.
Centacare Catholic Social Services incorporates the various charitable and welfare works of the Diocese of Parramatta – some going back to the inception of the Diocese in 1986.
But the name has now changed to CatholicCare Social Services and with the name change comes a new logo.
The name CatholicCare Social Services was chosen to more clearly link the agency to the Catholic Church in the Parramatta Diocese.
Executive Director of CatholicCare Social Services, Otto Henfling, said the new name and logo were an important next step in the agency’s progress.
“Three years ago various welfare agencies in the Diocese were amalgamated into one agency to combine the strengths of the various services and ministries,” Mr Henfling said. “The new name is a significant step towards our future as the primary Catholic Christian agency of support for people in Sydney’s greater west.
”The primary task of CCSS in the Parramatta Diocese is “to provide social services in the spirit of Christ to support people, relationships and communities as together we strive for justice and empowerment."
New logo 'more than meets the eye'
At the recent launch to staff of the new name and logo Mr Henfling explained that the new logo was strongly symbolic of the role of the agency and therefore contains more than may first meet the eye.
“The logo starts by acknowledging that all we do is within the auspices of the Catholic Diocese and so we have the Diocese of Parramatta at the top.
“The swirling ‘C’ and the teal box link to the traditional Centacare logo.
“The ‘C’ sits on top of a lighter shaded cross signifying that what we do is based on the Gospel message of sacrifice and mercy. However, the cross is subtle and in the background, because, as Pope Benedict pointed out in his first encyclical, Deus Caritas Est the role of “Charity ... cannot be used as a means of engaging in ... proselytism.”
“In addition, we add the words ‘Social Services’ to stay focussed on our strength – that is, on social services and not on other services like health or education.”
“Our work is to support and assist families, couples, children and individuals.
“We have branches and outreach services in the hills, valleys, mountains and plains – Parramatta, Blacktown, Quakers Hills, Mt Druitt, and Penrith.
“Some of the services are those you might expect like Marriage and Family Counselling, Pregnancy Counselling, Gambling Counselling and Financial Counselling.
“There’s also our Sole Parent ministry, and education for engaged couples preparing for marriage. There are parenting courses, group work for people who have separated or divorced and support for children who are experiencing big changes in their families through separation or divorce.
“We also have marriage and family enrichment programs like Marriage Sunday.
“We also have family support services – offering home visits to assist parents to nurture and protect their children.
“We provide a pastoral ministry to people with HIV AIDs and their families.
“Our indigenous program, Aboriginal Catholic Social Services, does great work with Aboriginal People in the Penrith, Blacktown and Mt Druitt areas – including youth work, counselling, prison visits, art and craft, and job training.
“We also have a service to assist newly arrived African families where trained Sudanese welfare workers work with families to provide support and assistance to get used to living in Australia.
“There is a service for frail or aged people – Blacktown Neighbour Aid - who live in their own home. Volunteers are recruited and trained to provide social support which involves visiting and also transporting to shops, or medical appointments – the gaps that other services don’t provide – to try to break down the isolation and disconnection from the community that elderly and frail aged or disabled people often experience when they are still living in their own homes.
“Our Emmaus Disabled Persons Catholic Service operates 4 group homes for adults with an intellectual disability in Blacktown and Windsor. Emmaus keeps the members involved with their faith and connected with their families through lots of different activities. There are activities such as music nights, sports days and family nights.
“We also have Catherine Villa, which supports pregnant young women – under 25 years of age - but most are under 17 – who would otherwise be homeless. It’s a safe home as they prepare for the birth of their baby and some may already have a toddler. The girls are supported to care for themselves, learning cooking and life skills, but also how to care for their baby or children – and to develop a secure attachment. Catherine Villa staff also run playgroups in the community – where they can take their parenting and life skills education to a wider community of young mums.
“Last year Centacare helped thousands of people throughout the Diocese.
“Every person assisted has the potential to positively impact family members and friends – like the ripple effect you see when you throw a stone in the water.
“CatholicCare plans to keep helping the people of Western Sydney to have this ripple effect.”
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