By Eric Steckel
Last week, Chuck wrote about how Catholic Charities of the East Bay is becoming “more responsive and relevant to the parishes and the Diocese of Oakland.” One way that we are doing that is through our new online Catholic Social Service Directory (www.FaithInActionOakDiocese.org ). Today we want to take a closer look.
The website was developed in response to the need to better connect priests, staff, and parishioners with the social services in their parish area. We wanted to create a tool that truly connected to the heart of the church. The database is comprised of agencies affiliated with the Catholic Church, non-denominational faith based organizations, and unaffiliated or secular social service agencies whose mission is in keeping with Catholic social teaching. By combining them all in one location, we provide a means for Catholics and all users to respond to needs they meet on the street.
The searchable directory provides services in 12 areas: addiction, clothing and household, domestic violence, education, employment and workforce development, family, food and hunger, homeless and housing, immigration and resettlement, medical and mental health, prison outreach, and senior and hospice care. In addition, users can also search for agencies by city and zip code. Importantly, the site can also be updated so that information is current and new agencies can be added.
The web-based directory is a responsive site. That means that it can be easily accessed via computer or smartphone. We realized that many users needed to be able to access the directory via their mobile device. Indeed, for many, those devices are their only access to the internet.
If someone you know is in need of human services, we encourage you to use www.FaithInActionOakDiocese.org . If you know of an agency that should be listed, please let us know. Share with us your thoughts in the comments section below so that together, we can be Christ’s “church in the streets.”