Director: Kenneth J. Ferrone
Catholic Charities of Southern New Mexico Catholic Charities was founded in 2004 and is chartered by the Roman Catholic Diocese of Las Cruces to be a provider of social, legal, and economic assistance to people in need in southern New Mexico regardless of their faith, belief, gender, ethnicity, immigration status, or cultural background. Vision Catholic Charities’ Board of Directors and staff work to help meet the basic needs of individuals and families, address the roots causes of poverty, eliminate oppression, and build a more just and compassionate society. Mission The mission of Catholic Charities is to serve others and create opportunity and hope by offering assistance to people in need, advocating for human dignity and social justice, and calling all people of good will to do the same. In order to fulfill our mission, we partner with the community to provide: Comprehensive low-cost legal services for immigrants, and many free services for Special Immigrant Juveniles and individuals who are victims of crime and domestic violence Economic assistance to homeless families and children, and needy families throughout southern New Mexico Interdenominational initiatives to help strengthen families and marriages, reduce high school drop-out rates as well as teenage pregnancies Financial literacy programs and financial alternatives to predatory lending companies Economic development and training initiatives to help women and the disadvantaged start their own businesses. Services Catholic Charities employs ten individuals including an executive director, two full-time immigration attorneys, a victim advocate, five paralegals, and a receptionist. We are the only nonprofit organization in our service area that offers defense of deportation and legal representation of asylum seekers. We also work with local, state, and federal law enforcement agencies and nonprofit partners to expose and combat human trafficking in our border community. Service Area The organization’s service area is approximately 55,000 square miles with a target population of 542,086 which includes the 10 southern counties of New Mexico. Poverty rates in southern New Mexico are some of the highest in the nation. For example, 35% of Hidalgo County residents and 27% of Dona Ana County residents live at or beneath the federal poverty level.