June 11, 2020

Catholic Social Services’ Ministries Continue To Serve Individuals, Families, and Children amid the Coronavirus (COVID-19) Pandemic

Catholic Social Services’ Family Service Centers and Out-of-School Time Programs across the region are continuing to keep clients and children virtually engaged, connected, and supported amid the public health crisis facing our nation.

Individuals, families, and children who benefit from programs operated by Catholic Social Services of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia (CSS) are continuing to receive support in the midst of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic thanks to the ongoing dedication and creativity of administrators and staff.

Since the onset of the pandemic, Family Service Centers, part of the Community-Based Services Division of CSS, have provided critical support and emergency assistance including food, diapers, and social services to those in need across the five-county metropolitan area.

In an effort to ensure that other resources remain available for those in our community, Family Service Center have turned to online technologies such as Zoom to offer essential parenting and prenatal classes as well as educational video series. Topics of these virtual classes include: Parenting during a Pandemic; Positive Parenting; Bonding with Baby; Bathtub Safety; Prenatal classes; and more. 

Ms. Amy Stoner, Director of CSS’ Community-Based and Housing and Homeless Services Division said, “Now more than ever it is critical we remain engaged and connected with our children and families.”

In addition, CSS’ Out-of-School Time Programs, which serve children and youth in grades K-12, are continuing to provide support and engaging learning experiences to help children develop skills vital to future educational achievement. Staff have effectively shifted from traditional classroom instruction to utilizing Facebook Live, Zoom, Google Classroom, YouTube, and other technologies. Virtual programming includes homework help, book read aloud and accompanying activities, art show and tell, outdoor activities, healthy cooking demonstrations, science experiments, yoga classes, and more.

During the school year, CSS’ OST programs provide safe, challenging, and engaging learning experiences that help children develop social, emotional, physical, and academic skills. Throughout the summer months, OST programs support working families by offering places for their children to participate in recreational activities and academic reinforcement programs to help them avoid summer learning loss.

For more information on CSS’ temporal response to the COVID-19 pandemic please visit https://cssphiladelphia.org/covid19/.

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Editor’s Note: Catholic Social Services (CSS) of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia offers community-based and residential programs and services to support men, women and children in need as an expression of the charitable works of our local Church throughout the Greater Philadelphia area. To learn more about CSS programs that serve a wide variety of human needs, please visit http://cssphiladelphia.org/.