Casa Guadalupana: Help for Families in Crisis
Casa Guadalupana is a Catholic Worker house that helps Latina immigrants, usually single moms with kids, who may be experiencing a crisis or just can’t meet their basic needs. They are people whose living situations are so tenuous that they can rapidly slide into catastrophe. These are also families who are ineligible for assistance and have no family or support system to fall back on. Casa not only sees families through the crisis, but helps them develop skills and supports to meet future challenges.
Casa Guadalupana has entered into a partnership with The Family Place and Interfaith Action – two longtime local programs that serve homeless families. The partnership is focused on growing an innovative effort to help families move and stay out of the homeless system in the future. Families attend skill building classes and stay at Casa for four months. The classes not only build job seeking skills, but also help individuals going through rough times become more aware of the skills they do have and how to improve their ability to interact with others. Casa has evolved from being a short term emergency residence to a program designed to reduce the need for emergency shelter for many in our community.
Casa has the capacity to serve 16 individuals at any one time. Over the course of the last year it is supporting between 40-50 people. Families have children ranging from newborn to high school age. Initial results from the last two years are promising. Those familes Casa has supported have moved to and continue to live in more permanent housing. Program graduates are holding down jobs and their children are continuing their education.
Casa also provides meeting space for local organizations from the Latino/Latina community to hold meetings and classes. It has partnered with West Side Growing and other West Side organizations on activities for residents, including learning about growing food, trying new foods, and learning how to improve nutrition.
With the assistance of Saint Matthew's, Casa received funds from the City of St. Paul to take care of important upgrades for the safety of residents and functioning of the house. This includes better insulation to reduce energy consumption, the installation of air conditioning for comfort during warm summer days, fixing the parking lot and replacing a retaining wall that is approaching the end of its functional life.
For more information contact Kim Anderson, 651-222-7668.
Help Casa Renovate the Rectory
Casa is looking for volunteer groups or organizations willing to adopt one room for renovation at the rectory. While many rooms have already been refurbished, others still need to be fixed up and furnished to be ready for use. To find out more, call 651-222-7668.