I am a community organizer for a small independent Catholic social services agency. I work with all sorts of people. Homeless, unemployed, runaways, ex-convicts, gays and lesbians, poor people etc vulnerable populations in general. We help them apply for government benefits such as WIC, SSI, disability, food stamps, childcare, school. We also direct women who are pregnant and considering abortion to a pregnancy crisis center and Catholic adoption agencies.
I’m in a declining rustbelt city. Not a lot of agencies like to come to this area. But I like to think we make an impact. Do I get a just wage? I’m a community organizer… It’s kind of ironic because everything I believe about it isn’t true for my job… My wages are low I admit and I’ve got a masters degree. Less than $30,000 a year… I’m guardian to my sister’s children (she and her husband have passed away) so I’ve got three mouths to feed and I’m not married which heavily complicates things with both the Church and school.
We are not in a labor union. But I strongly support organized labor… I attended the Wisconsin protests with the children
I wish I had better insurance… I have a high detectible health plan personally which is expensive for someone who is 50 some like me. But the kids have SCHIP.
We are a Catholic organization that is independent (although we keep a good relationship with the Church and the diocese to keep the Catholic part of us intact)…
I work within a Catholic social teaching framework… I love Catholic social teaching… Its a shame because not a lot of Catholics pay attention to it