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The Florida Catholic

‘We Are There’ campaign fills an ongoing gap in awareness

Campaign post

RIVIERA BEACH  |  Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Palm Beach has joined a national branding campaign to promote the life-giving and inspiring work being done to aid vulnerable populations in the Palm Beaches and Treasure Coast.

The partnership with Catholic Charities USA has created an easy-to-use framework for local agencies to tell their stories through the “We Are There” campaign. Ellen Wayne, CEO of the local Catholic Charities agency, explained how the campaign is being implemented in a cost-efficient manner through social media.

“There’s the reality that, locally, our agency, and I’m assuming many other agencies, don’t have a depth of resources when it comes to communication and marketing, etc.,” she said. “And so, for this to be developed and a toolkit made available to us where we didn’t have to invest a significant amount of resources or energy in the crafting, development and implementation, that created an ease and a relief for us as a local organization. I can’t say enough about that.”

The national campaign provides templates for Catholic Charities agencies to use or adapt with local content, Wayne said. For example, in the case of an event such as a hurricane, instead of using her staff to shoot photos of the Catholic Charities disaster team helping people and create an appropriate message, she can utilize templates with professional images and wording.

The “We Are There” campaign fills an ongoing gap in awareness about the work of Catholic Charities, she said.

“Part of what we struggle with is people even knowing who we are or what we do, or even knowing where to turn for help,” Wayne said. By accessing the campaign online, people can find their local agency or the one closest to them, which is helpful to those seeking assistance and others who would like to volunteer or donate to Catholic Charities.

“The reality is that, in many situations — disasters, mental health, hunger, pregnancy care and so much more — we’re responding to people who really are your neighbors, and maybe even your family members,” she said.

For 40 years, Catholic Charities has provided comfort, hope and relief to people, regardless of their faith, in Indian River, Okeechobee, St. Lucie, Martin and Palm Beach counties. Through its 13 programs and ministries, the agency serves residents and visitors with a wide range of needs. That work is mirrored by services provided at Catholic Charities agencies across the country.

There are 168 independent Catholic Charities agencies and 3,900 collective locations throughout the United States and its five territories. Collectively, the Catholic Charities network served more than 15 million people last year and provided more than 30 million meals to those in need. The dedicated Catholic Charities staff members are aided by more than 215,000 volunteers nationwide. The services offered by each local agency differ because they are tailored to the needs of its vulnerable community members.

“We are incredibly proud to be a member of a national network of organizations, dedicated to serving the most poor and vulnerable members of our communities,” Wayne said. “It is both timely and necessary that we embark upon this campaign that highlights and celebrates the essential work we do, impacting thousands of individuals and families, right here in the Palm Beaches and Treasure Coast, each and every year.”

For more information on Catholic Charities in the five-county Diocese of Palm Beach, visit or call 561-345-2000.