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Monthly News & Updates

July 2022

Celebrating our nation’s birthday on July 4 elicits wonderful memories related to my life. My experiences as a high school American History teacher, my favorite law school class in Constitutional Law, and my parents whose immigrant backgrounds formed my love of history and principles of justice, service, patriotism, and goodwill.

From remarks presented by Pope Francis to a U.S. congressional joint session in 2015, he reflected on our American history stating, “…(to) serve and promote the good of the human person and be based on respect for his or her dignity…” are foundational to our Constitution and democracy. Pope Francis concluded with, “God Bless America.” 

At Catholic Charities, we remain faithful to our legacy and mission to empower individuals and strengthen families in serving our communities by providing food, housing, health, hospitality and safety to those in need. As we prepare for our 100th year anniversary in 2025, we will share stories from our past and present, as well as plans for our future endeavors.

By understanding our collective history, its promises and struggles, freedoms and liberties, expressions and experiences, and rights and responsibilities, we can embrace our vision as a people filled with the Holy Spirit.

What special memories do you reflect on as we celebrate this Independence Day? 


With Blessings,

Barbara Q. Decker

Catholic Charities Executive Director

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In the News

Uniting for Ukraine

On April 21, 2022, President Biden announced Uniting for Ukraine, a new streamlined process to provide Ukrainian citizens opportunities to seek temporary refuge in the United States. These individuals will be granted US entry under humanitarian parole and will not be eligible for Reception and Placement (R&P) services or other Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR) funded programs. 

  • US-based individuals and entities can apply to DHS to sponsor Ukrainian citizens who have been displaced by Russia’s aggression through the Uniting for Ukraine process:
  • Welcome.US has established a hub with additional information on the Uniting for Ukraine initiative which includes resources for potential sponsors:
  • Catholic Charities is currently working with government agencies to provide select services to sponsor families. General donations to Catholic Charities Refugee Services will support these efforts.

EVENT: BBQ with the Bishop

Tickets are available for BBQ with the Bishop on Saturday, July 30. The BBQ will be held at the home of Dan and Mary Buscher in West Des Moines. Tickets are $50 and include dinner, drinks, live music, and of course, the Bishop! Don't miss this unique opportunity that benefits Catholic Charities, Diocese of Des Moines.

Buy Tickets Here

Summer Support

Summer presents all sorts of challenges as children are home from school, vacations and reunions take us out of our comfort zones, and summer to-do lists challenge finances and patience. Our team of professional therapists can offer important support as you navigate the summer months and beyond!

To schedule an appointment, call 515-237-5045.

CLICK HERE For more information about Catholic Charities Counseling Program.

Get involved in July!

Catholic Charities programs run throughout the year. We are always looking for people who want to help support our mission to empower individuals and strengthen families.

Here are some immediate needs:

Food Pantry: 

  • Extra volunteers on Tuesday and Wednesday mornings

Emergency Family Shelter: 

  • Meal providers
  • Regular-sized bottles of conditioner and baby wipes.

To find out more about volunteering, immediate needs, and collection drives, contact Emily Klisares at or 515-237-5027.

Sign up to VOLUNTEER

Volunteer Spotlight

This month, we want to spotlight Our Lady’s Immaculate Heart Vacation Bible School that took place the week of June 13-17. Their theme was "Monumental - Celebrating God's Creations".

The kids collected an SUV load of paper towels, laundry soap, and personal hygiene items. They also contributed more than $400 in cash donations for Catholic Charities programs!

We thank the drive coordinator, Jackie King, Amy Wall, parish secretary, the volunteer teachers and helpers, kids, and parents at OLIH for their generosity and help!

Annual Appeal at 97%

Catholic Charities Annual Appeal is the primary funding source for Catholic Charities just after government and private grant funding.

Donors who commit to an annual gift help strengthen and empower individuals and families through some of the most difficult times in their lives. Consider an annual gift that will help all year!

Donate Now

Sam Hutchisson named Refugee Wellness Case Manager

Sam Hutchisson will take on the role of Refugee Wellness Case Manager. He will work closely with our case managers to connect our clients with comprehensive, culturally appropriate physical and mental health care.

Sam joined Catholic Charities in September of 2022 as Refugee Services Coordinator amidst the Afghan humanitarian crisis. Volunteers will recognize him as the Refugee Services Coordinator managing the warehouse, apartment setups, and donated materials.

Before Catholic Charities, Sam was an Adult Refugee Education AmeriCorps VISTA at Lutheran Services of Iowa, where he worked with refugees and immigrants to build career pathways, assist in citizenship inquiries, and community-based English as a second language education programming.

We are excited to have Sam in this new role and continue to be a valuable team member at Catholic Charities!

Click here for Catholic Charities Employment Opportunities

Serving those in need within the Diocese of Des Moines

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Catholic Charities, Diocese of Des Moines serves those in need within the 23 counties of the Diocese of Des Moines in southwest Iowa. Our mission to empower individuals and strengthen families applies to anyone in need in the area regardless of demographic. Our mission is rooted in Catholic Social Teaching. Our programs and services include refugee resettlement, professional counseling, food pantry, domestic violence and sexual assault shelter and services, emergency family shelter, case management and more. We impact over 30,000 individuals each year.

Find more information about Catholic Charities at

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