To improve the quality of life for people of all faiths and backgrounds in need throughout central and Southern Ohio and to strengthen families, guide individuals toward economic stability, and serve as an extended family for seniors.
We initiated the Pathways to Hope program, an intensive case management program to help stabilize survivors of domestic violence into their own safe and affordable home.
We hired a part-time staff member as a parish liaison to facilitate referrals from the faith community and to enhance volunteer-based services.
We increased the reach of supportive services to seniors through a new collaboration with MediGold, a Medicare Advantage Plan.
We will revise the agency’s three-year strategic plan by evaluating our portfolio of programs and services, continuing to evaluate each program’s contribution to the overall agency mission, and making decisions to reduce or increase services in various program areas.
We will enhance the agency’s computer systems, installing a new integrated donor database and financial accounting system and providing staff with up-to-date equipment and software and increased security features.
We will update the agency’s website, allowing us to make changes in-house and helping us to better communicate with potential volunteers, enhancing services provided.
Catholic Social Services (CSS) is a faith-based agency providing a wide array of programs for individuals and families of all faiths. We serve these individuals and families throughout their life cycle. CSS has been serving the central Ohio community since 1945, working throughout 23 counties of central and southern Ohio. Offices are located in Columbus, Newark, Portsmouth, and Zanesville. Catholic Social Services is an award-winning agency, accredited by the Council on Accreditation (COA), which certifies that all operations and programs meet best practice standards for professional service. CSS is a member of Catholic Charities USA, a member agency of United Way of Central Ohio, and licensed by the Ohio Department of Mental Health.
In 2011, CSS initiated services to survivors of domestic violence in a new program Pathways to Hope. CSS works with CHOICES for Victims of Domestic Violence, the domestic violence shelter in Franklin County, to receive referrals from those wanting to make a fresh start and establish themselves independently. The agency helps these women and their families transition from emergency shelter into affordable and independent living, safe from the abuser, by providing long-term, intensive case management. We were fortunate to have a proposal for funding granted from the Office of Violence Against Women that will offset the program costs for the next three years. Even with this funding, CSS is using some of its reserves because this service is very needed in the community.
The downturn in the economy for the past few years has been very challenging for the nonprofit social service sector. Like most service agencies, we have seen an increase in the number of requests for help, but have not been able to find additional resources and funding to meet those requests. With an active and committed board of directors, and a positive working relationship with agency leadership, we have begun the work to again clarify our mission and vision. I am very proud of CSS for initiating the Pathways to Hope program that works with the survivors of domestic violence. This program is unique in central Ohio and is one of a few that offers long-term case management to help survivors establish and maintain a new start on life.
All portrait information is provided voluntarily by nonprofit organizations. An organization may decline to participate. At a minimum, information is updated annually--sometimes more frequently.
Donald Wisler received his Master of Social Work from St. Louis University in St. Louis, MO and his Bachelor of Arts in psychology from St. Francis College in Fort Wayne, IN. Don is a licensed independent social worker and is certified through the Academy of Certified Social Workers. A native of Bryan, OH, he most recently served as executive director of Catholic Charities, Diocese of Toledo, for 12 years. He has also held the positions of executive director of Catholic Social Services of Monroe, MI and assistant director of Catholic Social Services in Fort Wayne, IN. Don was also assistant professor of social work at St. Francis College.
Angela Keener is a licensed independent social worker and has been employed with Catholic Social Services for 13 years. She is responsible for overseeing the organization and implementation of outreach programs serving older adults in Franklin and surrounding counties, including homemaker, transportation, supportive services, senior companion, and the Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program. Angela is also responsible for continuous quality improvement at Catholic Social Services. Angela has served for the past three years as division director of family supportive services at CSS. Prior to that, she was the director of the senior care and senior companion programs for CSS.
Karen Washbush is responsible for overseeing all aspects of development (annual giving, special events, major and corporate giving, and charitable estate planning), marketing, and public relations for Catholic Social Services. Karen has served for six years as director of development and marketing for CSS. Previously, Karen was director of marketing for Corporate Finance Associates. She is the former director of major and leadership gifts at Nationwide Children's Hospital Foundation and a donor services officer with The Columbus Foundation.
All portrait information is provided voluntarily by nonprofit organizations. An organization may decline to participate. At a minimum, information is updated annually--sometimes more frequently. Documents indicated as available by an organization are verified by Foundation staff.
The Our Lady of Guadalupe Center serves the needs of the growing Hispanic community by providing emergency food assistance; health screenings; information on nutrition, housing, legal aide, and finances; and guidance in acquiring basic necessities. The Guadalupe Center has set itself apart from other local food pantries by operating as a "choice" food pantry. At our "choice" food pantry, rather than being handed a preselected box of food, clients are given points, based on family size, to spend by hand-selecting food items of their choice, much like they would in a grocery store. CSS' choice food pantry offers a two-fold benefit. Allowing the families to select the foods they need helps eliminate waste of unwanted foods, foods that are not needed, and foods they do not know how to prepare. Using a point system teaches the clients how to assess needs, prioritize, and budget, all necessary skills for managing a household.
Advocacy for recipients of long-term care is available in eight central Ohio counties through community and provider education, resident and family council development, service selection assistance, as well as explaining benefits, rights, and regulations. Ombudsmen investigate and resolve complaints regarding quality-of-life and quality-of-care concerns. The program also provides transition coordination services to select residents leaving the nursing home to re-enter the community through the Medicaid funded Helping Ohioans Move, Expanding Choice (HOME Choice) project.
Licensed staff, trained in a variety of therapies, help individuals, couples, and families address a wide range of life challenges, including relationship problems; anxiety; depression; grief; panic attacks; phobias; child abuse; sexual abuse; domestic violence; parent-child conflict; and issues related to life stages, infertility, post-abortion, and adult adoptee concerns. Counseling and education is also provided for those experiencing an unplanned pregnancy to help explore options and make life-affirming choices. Services available for pregnant and parenting teens include counseling and education regarding pregnancy, adoption, parent education, and support.
Pathways to Hope is a new program working with survivors of domestic violence to transition from emergency shelters into affordable housing and providing long-term case management.
Individualized financial management is available for those who are unable to manage their own financial affairs due to a disability or for those who just need help in effectively handling their fiscal matters. With client consent, as the named payee for the person's income, Payee Services accounts for all income and pays monthly bills on time on behalf of the client. Our services help people avoid getting behind or building debt that cannot be resolved. Payee Services assists clients to better understand and meet their financial obligations and helps each individual establish a budget to manage monthly expenses. Payee Services annually manages in excess of $3.9 million in client benefits, while handling more than 53,500 financial transactions for 395 clients.
Licensed social workers provide ongoing, in-home needs assessment, care planning, and consultation to help vulnerable seniors maintain their independence. To reduce isolation, trained older volunteers offer peer companionship and homemaker assistance to elderly and disabled clients. Transportation is also available to qualifying seniors and veterans for medical appointments.
All portrait information is provided voluntarily by nonprofit organizations. An organization may decline to participate. At a minimum, information is updated annually--sometimes more frequently. Documents indicated as available by an organization are verified by Foundation staff. The financial section is completed by Foundation staff based on available documents for a three-year period.
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