Farewell to Celia Yapita
Please join us in saying farewell to Celia Yapita, Chief Program Officer and Director of the Center for Refugee Support of Catholic Charities. After 10 years with our organization, Celia has elected to pursue a career change.
Celia began her career with Catholic Charities as a volunteer in our Refugee Resettlement program. She was soon hired as the program’s Volunteer Coordinator and served in several other positions in the agency over the years before being named Program Director in 2016. She then oversaw the program through a major transition when, in 2017, it shifted from resettlement to an ongoing support model. In 2018, Celia was promoted to Chief Program Officer.
Her leadership, organizational skills and many partnerships and collaborations with the community were demonstrated throughout her career at Catholic Charities. One of her many memorable accomplishments was coordinating the Companions on the Journey effort in February – June 2019. By training and collaborating with organizations throughout the community, including the City of Albuquerque, this effort collectively helped thousands of asylum-seekers fleeing violence in their countries to reach safe homes with sponsors/family members throughout the United States. Our Board of Directors awarded Celia the “Hands of the Holy Spirit” award for her remarkable leadership in this initiative. In August 2020, Celia began an anti-racism workgroup in Catholic Charities to examine how the agency can better address racial injustice and inequality, both internally and within the greater community.
These are only a few instances of the outstanding contributions Celia has provided during her time with Catholic Charities. “We know that Celia will excel in her new position with the United Way of Central New Mexico, and we wish her well,” said Dolores Nunez, Chief Executive Officer for Catholic Charities in the Archdiocese of Santa Fe.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CONTACT: Catholic Charities, Dolores Nuñez, 505-724-4693, firstname.lastname@example.org
ALBUQUERQUE, NEW MEXICO (August 26, 2021) Following its regularly scheduled meeting, the Board of Directors of Catholic Charities in the Archdiocese of Santa Fe announced that Chief Executive Officer and Executive Director James Gannon has decided to retire from Catholic Charities after nearly 16 years of service. The Board of Directors has appointed Dolores Nunez, former Chief Administrative Officer for Catholic Charities, to the position of Chief Executive Officer and Executive Director.
“We would like to thank Jim for his leadership during his tenure with Catholic Charities. In 2006 Jim joined the organization and brought a fresh vision for the agency by creating Centers of Service, providing a structure and responsiveness in serving the most vulnerable in our community with dignity. Jim led the effort to build Catholic Charities’ community service center, Casa de Corazon, which provides services to approximately 20,000 individuals annually. Most recently, he created CC Housing, Inc. which partners with developers and funders nationwide to build affordable housing for New Mexico citizens. We wish Jim well in his retirement as he begins a new chapter in his life,” Don Kawal, Board Chair for Catholic Charities in the Archdiocese of Santa Fe stated.
About Catholic Charities
For 75 years, Catholic Charities has served as the local 501(c)(3) affiliate of Catholic Charities USA to create hope for those in need within central New Mexico. As a nonprofit social services agency, Catholic Charities works with a variety of organizations to find solutions to some of the most pressing social challenges individuals, children and families face regardless of race, religion, country of origin, disabilities, age, gender, sexual orientation, or any other identifier.
With approximately 85 staff members and over 200 volunteers, the agency assists approximately 20,000 families throughout New Mexico’s Bernalillo, Sandoval and Santa Fe counties each year. Services include self-sufficiency and housing assistance, adult basic education classes, refugee support, low-cost immigration and citizenship legal services, senior transportation, and affordable housing developments. More information about Catholic Charities services can be found at www.ccasfnm.org or https://www.facebook.com/CCASFNM/.
8/25/2020 – Catholic Charities Addresses Ongoing Racial Justice Work
On June 17, 2020 Catholic Charities released a statement regarding the recent tragedies that brought to light the fears and injustices that Black Americans have faced every day for generations. In it, we stated our commitment to becoming a positive participant in addressing issues of racial injustice, both within our organization and in our larger community.
We have been meeting regularly with our staff to explore possibilities for how we can address racial injustice within Catholic Charities. All employees are invited to participate in he development of short-and-long term plans and goals for racial equity within our organization. With support from the Executive team and our Board of Directors, we have formed a work group to continue the discussion of how we will address issues of diversity, equality, inclusion and racial justice.
Goals outlined by our work group include:
- Educate staff on the historical context of current racial tension in the United States, including expanding organizational vocabulary to include terms relating to racial justice.
- Acknowledge and address systemic racism, and evaluate our policies and practices through an anti-racist lens.
- Examine our demographic data in our hiring process, board, and staff to more accurately reflect
the racial diversity of the community we serve.
- Look at stakeholder and collaborator relationships to ensure the inclusion and active support of
our Black, Indigenous, and POC* communities in all work we do.
We recognize that this conversation is ongoing, and that we are at the beginning of a cultural
shift. Our staff, collaborators, clients, and volunteers are vital contributors to this effort, and continue to provide
ideas and feedback about how we can improve our work. We commit to this work in an effort to Honor Human
Dignity, understanding that we cannot fully affirm the dignity inherent in every human life without recognizing
and working against racial injustice, both internally and within our community.
We welcome feedback from our community. To join the conversation, please visit
(*People of Color)
(Photo credit: Tara Armijo-Prewitt)
Registration for Adult Education online classes opens today. Catholic Charities has made a commitment to improve student access to education using technology. / Hoy se abre la inscripción para las clases en línea de educación para adultos. Caridades
Registration for Adult Education online classes opens today. Catholic Charities has made a commitment to improve student access to education using technology.
ALBUQUERQUE, NEW MEXICO (August 17, 2020) Catholic Charities Adult Education program will continue online for the fall semester with registration starting today. With a drastic transition to online classes mid-spring term due to COVID-19, we successfully offered our online summer semester with new software to assist students’ learning.
In this remote learning model, students can complete courses in High School Equivalency, College Readiness (ACCUPLACER Preparation), Conversational English, English as a Second Language and Citizenship Preparation from home. Catholic Charities will have a limited supply of laptops available for students to borrow if needed. “As adult educators we understand the need to provide greater equity of access to technology, and ensure that students are equipped with the tools to meet their personal, educational, and professional goals.” says Maria Bustamante, one of the adult educators at Catholic Charities. She has seen first-hand how access to technology through every track has helped her students.
“I have students that come from many walks of life, and that includes some who have never used a computer. After a semester of online classes, and introduction to basic digital literacy, students feel more confident and prepared to achieve their goals”, she noted.
With this new online format, students who were previously unable to attend classes at our offices are now able to take part in our adult education program. This increased access to course offerings for students, regardless of their location, allows Catholic Charities to broaden its services in the Albuquerque community and beyond. Our program is accessible to our many students who work full time jobs and may have limited access to childcare.
“Technology has become more familiar to my students—given the circumstances, they have successfully shifted to using a necessary tool that will help them perform better in their studies and in the workforce,” says Juan Sanchez, a High School Equivalency Adult Educator at Catholic Charities.
Some of the technology we are currently using in the Center for Educational Opportunity and Career Pathways are:
- Google Classroom Burlington English, an online platform for learning English
- Paxen Focus, a tool for High School Equivalency studies
- Mockingbird Education, an online curriculum that integrates Career Pathways into lessons
- Zoom and Google Meet, virtual conferencing technologies
- Instructor created resources such as PowerPoint presentations, worksheets, and exams, and curated lists of internet resources for students.
To broaden access, instructors are also creating step-by-step videos and tutorials to assist students with digital literacy skills. These videos are available in English, Spanish, and Arabic.
Online registration for classes is open August 17th through September 1st for all new and returning students. The only cost to students is a one-time annual $15.00 registration fee payable by credit/debit card or bank transfer (applies to all students). $15.00 in cash, check, or money order can also be mailed directly to our office. Tuition waivers are available to anyone who needs them.
Fall semester classes begin the week of September 15th and end December 18th.
To register for classes for the fall term, new students should visit: www.ccasfnm.org/edu
Returning students can register for the fall term using the link emailed to them by their teacher. Please include your name and birthdate with the check, cash, or money order when mailing to our office at:
Attn: Catholic Charities -Development Dept.
2010 Bridge Blvd SW Albuquerque, NM 87105
About Catholic Charities
For 74 years, Catholic Charities has served as the local 501(c)(3) affiliate of Catholic Charities USA to create hope for those in need within central New Mexico. As a nonprofit social services agency, Catholic Charities works with a variety of organizations to find solutions to some of the most pressing social challenges individuals, children and families face regardless of race, religion, country of origin, disabilities, age, gender, sexual orientation, or any other identifier.
With approximately 85 staff members and over 200 volunteers, the agency assists nearly 17,500 families throughout New Mexico’s Bernalillo, Sandoval and Santa Fe counties each year. Services include self-sufficiency and housing assistance, adult basic education classes, refugee support, low-cost immigration and citizenship legal services, senior transportation, and affordable housing developments. More information about Catholic Charities services can be found at www.ccasfnm.org or https://www.facebook.com/CCASFNM/.
Hoy se abre la inscripción para las clases en línea de educación para adultos. Caridades Católicas se ha comprometido a mejorar el acceso de los estudiantes a la educación por medio de la tecnología.
ALBUQUERQUE, NUEVO MÉXICO (17 de agosto de 2020) El programa de educación para adultos de Caridades Católicas continuará en línea durante el semestre de otoño y las inscripciones comenzarán hoy. Con una transición drástica a las clases en línea a mediados de la primavera debido a COVID-19, ofrecimos con éxito nuestro semestre de verano en línea con nuevos programas informáticos adaptados al aprendizaje de los estudiantes.
En este modelo de aprendizaje a distancia, los estudiantes pueden completar desde casa cursos de Equivalencia de escuela secundaria, Preparación para la universidad (Preparación ACCUPLACER), inglés conversacional, inglés como segundo idioma y Preparación para la ciudadanía. Caridades Católicas tendrá un suministro limitado de computadoras portátiles disponibles que podemos prestar a los estudiantes que las necesiten.
“Como educadores de adultos, entendemos la necesidad de brindar mayor equidad en el acceso a la tecnología y de asegurarnos de que los estudiantes estén equipados con las herramientas necesarias para alcanzar sus metas personales, educativas y profesionales”. dice María Bustamante, una de las educadoras de adultos de Caridades Católicas. Ella ha visto de primera mano cómo el acceso a la tecnología a través de cada componente de los cursos ha ayudado a sus estudiantes.
“Tengo estudiantes con muy diversas experiencias de vida, y eso incluye a algunos que nunca han usado una computadora. Después de un semestre de clases en línea y una introducción a la alfabetización digital básica, los estudiantes se sienten más seguros y preparados para lograr sus objetivos”, señaló.
Con este nuevo formato en línea, los estudiantes que antes no podían asistir a clases en nuestras oficinas ahora pueden participar en nuestro programa de educación para adultos. Este mayor acceso a las ofertas de cursos para los estudiantes, independientemente de su ubicación, posibilita la ampliación de los servicios de Caridades Católicas en la comunidad de Albuquerque y en sus alrededores. Nuestro programa se ha hecho más accesible para muchos estudiantes que trabajan a tiempo completo y que no cuentan con servicios de guardería infantil.
“La tecnología se ha vuelto más familiar para mis estudiantes; dadas las circunstancias, han transitado exitosamente al uso de medios de enseñanza digitales. Esto los ayudará a desempeñarse mejor en sus estudios y en la fuerza laboral”, dice Juan Sánchez, un educador de adultos de equivalencia de escuela secundaria de Caridades Católicas.
Algunas de las tecnologías que estamos usando actualmente en el Center for Educational Opportunity and Career Pathways son:
- Google Classroom
- Burlington English, una plataforma en línea para aprender inglés
- Paxen Focus, un programa para los estudios de equivalencia de secundaria
- Mockingbird Education, un plan de estudios en línea que integra elementos de preparación para futuras profesiones en las lecciones
- Zoom y Google Meet, tecnologías de conferencias virtuales
Los educadores del centro han creado recursos de aprendizaje como presentaciones de PowerPoint, hojas de trabajo y exámenes, y colecciones de recursos de Internet previamente evaluados para los estudiantes.
Para ampliar el acceso, los instructores también están creando videos y tutoriales paso a paso para ayudar a los estudiantes con las habilidades de alfabetización digital. Estos videos estarán disponibles en inglés, español y árabe.
La inscripción en línea para las clases está abierta del 17 de agosto al 1ro de septiembre para todos los estudiantes nuevos y que regresan. El único costo para los estudiantes es una tarifa de inscripción anual de $15.00, que pueden pagar con tarjeta de crédito / débito o transferencia bancaria. También pueden enviar directamente a nuestra oficina el pago de los $15.00 en efectivo, cheque o giro postal. Las personas que lo necesiten, pueden solicitar exenciones de pago. Las clases del semestre de otoño comienzan la semana del 15 de septiembre y terminan el 18 de diciembre.
Para inscribirse en las clases del trimestre de otoño, los estudiantes nuevos deben visitar: www.ccasfnm.org/edu
Los estudiantes que regresan pueden registrarse para el trimestre de otoño usando el enlace que les envió su maestro/a por correo electrónico. Por favor incluya su nombre y fecha de nacimiento con el cheque, efectivo o giro postal si lo envía por correo a nuestra oficina a:
Attn: Catholic Charities - Development
2010 Bridge Blvd. SW Albuquerque, NM 87105
Sobre Caridades Católicas
Durante 74 años, Caridades Católicas ha servido como el afiliado local 501 (c) (3) de Caridades Católicas de EE. UU. para crear esperanza para los necesitados en el centro de Nuevo México. Como una agencia de servicios sociales sin fines de lucro, Caridades Católicas trabaja con una variedad de organizaciones para encontrar soluciones a algunos de los desafíos sociales más apremiantes que enfrentan las personas, los niños y las familias, independientemente de su raza, religión, país de origen, discapacidades, edad, género u orientación sexual, o cualquier otro identificador.
Con aproximadamente 85 miembros del personal y más de 200 voluntarios, la agencia ayuda a casi 17,500 familias en los condados de Bernalillo, Sandoval y Santa Fe de Nuevo México cada año. Los servicios incluyen asistencia para la autosuficiencia y la vivienda, clases de educación básica para adultos, apoyo a refugiados, servicios legales de inmigración y ciudadanía de bajo costo, transporte para personas mayores y desarrollos de viviendas asequibles. Puede encontrar más información sobre los servicios de Caridades Católicas en www.ccasfnm.org o https://www.facebook.com/CCASFNM/.
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – The Center for Refugee Support is seeking volunteers for it’s Learning Partners program, which is apart of the International Club youth program.
The Learning Partners program was launched in response to the COVID-19 school closures that happened this past spring. With refugee youth struggling to learn material provided to them through virtual classrooms, Catholic Charities launched a partnership that helped all students engage with one another while providing tutoring support from Albuquerque Academy volunteers. The Center for Refugee Support is looking for volunteers to help tutor about an hour a week via Zoom.
Students in the program speak a variety of languages including Arabic, Dari, Pashto, Kirundi and Swahili. Being able to provide one-on-one support to help everyone navigate virtual learning with English language development support was critical to the education of these international students.
See the full story on KRQE here.
See the full story in the Albuquerque Journal here.
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – For the past seven years, Catholic Charities has collaborated with parishes, schools, and other organizations to distribute needed school supplies to low-income students. However, due to COVID-19 they’ve had to get creative while keeping their families, staff, and volunteers safe.
Director of community involvement for Catholic Charities, Kathy Freeze discusses how this year’s back-to-school collection campaign will work. The organization hopes to collect 130 backpacks full of supplies that will be distributed to children and refugee youth that have resettled in Albuquerque.
See the full article at KRQE here.
A Message from CEO Jim Gannon:
Many of us are hurt, shocked, and outraged by the tragic deaths of #AhmaudArbery, #GeorgeFloyd, #TonyMcDade, and #BreonnaTaylor. These are just recent names on a list that is far too long. These tragedies have brought the fears and injustices that Black Americans have faced every day for generations to the attention of the nation and the entire world.
There is a critical need for us all to confront racism and inequality. We must come together to build a deeper understanding of issues around social justice and equity for all. Yes, we must speak up and pray, but our words and petitions for change must also be energized into action to not just challenge but extinguish the beliefs, motivations, and events that dehumanize of others.
Catholic Charities will be a positive participant in addressing these issues whether internal or external to our organization. We will not wear blinders in our community and we will call out instances of oppression and racism that confront us directly or indirectly. We desire to be a seed of social justice from which compassion, equity, and peace can grow.
Looking for past Catholic Charities updates? Access our archives here.