About

At Catholic Charities USA we have the privilege of serving Catholic Charities member agencies throughout the United States as they help the homeless, hungry, sick, and vulnerable in their communities, regardless of religious affiliation. We also coordinate national disaster relief and impact-reduction strategies, and advocate for justice in government and other social structures through policy work at our headquarters just outside of Washington, DC.

Our Team

Meet the dedicated team at Catholic Charities USA that supports the work of our member agencies around the United States.

Our History

We were founded over a century ago by men and women who believed that the collective efforts of the church to faithfully serve people in need could change the course of poverty in our nation.

1910

The National Conference is founded.

Nearly 400 people gathered at the Catholic University of America to found the National Conference of Catholic Charities (NCCC), “to bring about a sense of solidarity” among those working in charitable ministries, and “to be an attorney for the poor.”

1920

Msgr. John O’Grady named executive secretary.

NCCC founder Msgr. John O’Grady’s fostered a period of growth during his 40-year tenure. He focused on professionalizing the institutional staff, establishing diocesan Catholic Charities agencies, and advocating for workers, families, and the poor.

1929

Taking on a vigorous advocacy role.

The Great Depression prompted the NCCC to call on the government to provide relief and pass social legislation based on Catholic principles. Msgr. O’Grady helped influence the passage of key economic security, labor, and public housing legislation.

1972

Embracing an expanded mission.

In response to a Vatican II mandate, the NCCC adopted a new mission to pursue greater involvement in the world, to help transform society through advocacy, and to convene the Catholic community and other concerned people in that effort.

1986

NCCC becomes Catholic Charities USA.

As NCCC leadership recognized the need to be seen as a national organization with a strong advocacy voice, and to better position the national office to fund its initiatives, the NCCC took on the name Catholic Charities USA.

1990

Taking on disaster response.

An agreement in 1990 between Catholic Charities USA and the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops formally tasked CCUSA with coordinating domestic disaster response efforts on behalf of the Catholic Church in the United States.

2007

The Campaign to Reduce Poverty in America.

In response to the widespread chronic poverty exposed by Hurricanes Katrina and Rita in 2005, Catholic Charities USA launched the Campaign to Reduce Poverty in America, with the audacious goal of cutting the poverty rate in half by 2020.

2010

Catholic Charities USA’s centennial year.

To celebrate its centennial year CCUSA led several Centennial Leadership Summits which convened civic leaders, service providers, and interested citizens to address poverty in their communities, and hosted a commemorative Centennial Gathering.

2015

Welcoming the first female president.

In 2015 CCUSA welcomed Sr. Donna Markham OP, PhD as its new president. Religious orders of women established many of our first schools, hospitals, and social service organizations, many of which developed into today’s Catholic Charities agencies.

Our Financials

Your generous gifts to Catholic Charities USA and to individual Catholic Charities member agencies are what make so much of the work we do possible. Stewarding those gifts well is of the utmost importance to us, so if you have questions about the way our finances are handled — questions that aren’t answered by our online documentation — please don’t hesitate to ask.