Edie’s story was featured in Catholic Charities’ 2015 Annual Report.

At Catholic Charities, Edie’s laughter is a familiar sound. Her lighthearted, sweet personality is known by most of the Staff, including those that do not work directly with clients. She shares more than a smile and a giggle, creating art and kind notes for Staff. She is absolutely one of a kind.

After the passing of her mother in 2003, Edie began an extreme case of attention seeking behavior by repeatedly calling 911 for false ailments. She could not maintain employment, care for herself, or her apartment. This behavior continued for approximately two years before Edie entered the Catholic Charities’ Gateways Community Residence, a transitional, rehabilitative group home for adults who have been diagnosed with a serious and persistent mental illness (SPMI). Catholic Charities’ Staff taught Edie tangible skills, provided her support, and helped her achieve her independence. By 2007, Edie’s attention seeking behavior stopped, she became employed at the ARC and she moved into her own apartment. Armed with a Gateways Case Manager, “(Catholic Charities) taught me a lot about the importance of a support system and guided me in the right way,” states Edie. “I wish I knew what I know now back then.”

Over the last five years, Edie has maintained her apartment, not missed a day of work and has not demonstrated attention seeking behavior.

When asked, “What would your life be like if Catholic Charities hadn’t come into your life?”, Edie responded, “I’d probably be lost.”  She was then asked, “Is that how you felt before… lost?” Edie’s eyes filled with tears and she nodded her head yes. Every human being deserves to feel seen and heard. Edie is truly a beautiful person and with the assistance of Catholic Charities, she is able to live with dignity and respect.

Would you consider a gift today to help others achieve independence?