Funding to provide increased human services to West Baltimore residents

Media Contact: Rena Daly

02 Nov 16 12:00 AM CDT

Catholic Charities of Baltimore announced today that the agency has received six grants for programs that provide access to mental health services, employment training and placement assistance, violence prevention and access to food for residents of West Baltimore. Two other grants were awarded to partner organizations and will also provide funding for Catholic Charities’ programs in West Baltimore.

Catholic Charities of Baltimore received the following six grants:

  • $50,000 from CareFirst BlueCross BlueShield to Villa Maria Community Resources to support the growth of trama-informed behavioral health services for the children at the Safe Kids Zone, located at Penn North, through the establishment of a Therapeutic After-School program;
  • $35,920 from Behavioral Health System Baltimore to Baltimore Child and Adolescent Response System (BCARS), to provide mental health and substance use disorder services at the Youth Opportunities Center in West Baltimore;
  • $65,000 from the Marion I. and Henry J. Knott Foundation to St. Edward’s Workforce Development Center, which provides job readiness training and placement assistance to residents of Baltimore City;
  • $30,000 from the Maryland Emergency Food Program (MEFP) for food programs at five parishes in West Baltimore: St. Peter Claver, St. Gregory the Great, St. Edward, St. Cecilia and the Church of the Immaculate Conception (Baltimore);
  • $40,000 from the Walmart Foundation to provide case management services to the residents of West Baltimore served at St. Edward’s Workforce Development Center and other food pantry locations, and;
  • $20,000 from the T. Rowe Price Foundation for the St. Edward’s Workforce Development Center to provide job readiness training and job placement assistance to young adults in West Baltimore;

Catholic Charities of Baltimore will receive additional funding through grants awarded to two partner organizations:

  • Catholic Charities is part of a recent SAMHSA (Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration) grant awarded to Behavioral Health System Baltimore that also includes a partnership with Penn North. The award will allow Catholic Charities to provide trauma-informed therapy services to young people in West Baltimore. The total grant is for $400,000 per year for five years, of which Catholic Charities is expected to receive $75,000 per year over the same timeframe.
  • The Edward Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grant (Office of Justice Programs, an agency of the U.S. Department of Justice) awarded a grant to the University of Maryland Promise Heights that will go towards violence prevention in the Druid Heights and Sandtown-Winchester communities in West Baltimore. A portion of the grant will provide an additional Violence Interrupter to Catholic Charities’ Safe Streets program in the Sandtown-Winchester neighborhood; the new position will focus specifically on youth attending local middle and high schools. The entire grant is for just under $1,000,000 over three years; Catholic Charities is expected to receive $48,000 per year.

“We are extremely grateful for these generous grants that will allow Catholic Charities to improve the lives of our neighbors in West Baltimore through increased access to healthy food, expanded mental health services and resources to help prevent and interrupt violence in our communities,” said Bill McCarthy, executive director of Catholic Charities of Baltimore. “The organizations that awarded the grants and our partners in the community are committed to ending poverty and violence and increasing opportunities for all residents of our city.”

About Catholic Charities of Baltimore

Catholic Charities of Baltimore is Maryland’s largest private provider of human services, offering assistance to children and families, people living in poverty, individuals with intellectual disabilities, immigrants and seniors without regard to religion, race or other circumstances. Inspired by the Gospel mandates to love, serve and teach, the more than 80 programs of Catholic Charities improve the lives of hundreds of thousands of Marylanders each year. Catholic Charities continues a legacy of charity and compassion that began with the establishment of the Catholic Church in Baltimore in 1789. For more information, please visit

Catholic Charities has experts available to discuss a wide variety of topics, including poverty, homelessness, mental health, intellectual disabilities, immigration and issues related to aging.