Catholic Charities honors volunteers for their service

Record Staff Report

Catholic Charities of Louisville recognized dozens of volunteers at a volunteer appreciation brunch at Epiphany Church July 21.

During the last fiscal year, 454 volunteers donated 22,344 hours in assisting with the work of the local charity.

The luncheon honored volunteers who have served Catholic Charities for 5, 10 and 15-plus years. Among the 100 volunteers honored at the luncheon, two individuals were recognized as nominees for Catholic Charities USA volunteer of the year — Don Weckman and Cheri Hall.

Weckman, a parishioner of Epiphany, has volunteered with Migration and Refugee Services, Common Table and Common Earth community garden for three years.

He began work in the MRS warehouse repairing pieces of donated furniture to deliver to refugee families. Weckman also built an outside wooden clothing donation bin and car seat wall racks. And he has repaired bicycles donated for refugee youth.

In the Common Table culinary arts program, he assisted in refurbishing a dining room space that later opened at the program’s restaurant cafe. In his work with the Common Earth community garden initiative, Weckman built a wash station for the incubator farm, a project that took 50 hours to complete, according to Catholic Charities.

Hall, a parishioner of Holy Spirit Church, has volunteered with Catholic Charities’ prison/jail ministry for 10 years. She began by visiting women in prisons located in the archdiocese as part of her parish’s Catholic studies group. Soon she began leading other groups around the archdiocese in their weekly ministries.

Hall has “worked tirelessly to build this program to engage parishioners in the four prisons and 24 jails in the diocese,” officials from Catholic Charities said.

She currently manages around 70 volunteers involved in weekly prayer and Scriptural ministries. She also serves on the board of the Greater Louisville Reentry Coalition, where she works to lower recidivism rates through holistic case management.

She’s involved in the annual Mission Behind Bars conference, which brings hundreds of social service providers, ministers and the faithful to shed light on reentry challenges and how to advocate for more training and referral opportunities for inmates,” a news release from Catholic Charities said.

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