Reilly donation to Catholic Charities is saving children from violence and murder
By David Jacobs--a reprint of an article appearing in Baton Rouge Area Foundation's Currents.
In a Central American town, a little girl named “Carmen” was raped again and again by members of a drug gang. Not unexpected, she was pregnant at 14. Worried that an even worse fate would befall her, Carmen’s parents sent her to a safe haven; the home of an uncle is better than dangerous streets. They were mistaken, for the uncle only continued the pattern of abuse.
At 17, Carmen decided to take control of her fate. Packing up her 3-year-old son, she traveled hundreds of miles toward the promise of America. She surrendered to border authorities, and made her way to her mother in the United States.
The abuse she suffered at home, and the inability of her own government to protect her, makes Carmen a good candidate to become a resident of the U.S., says David Aguillard, the executive director of Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Baton Rouge.
NOTE: With her husband, Kevin Reilly Jr., Winifred Reilly helped kick off the Louisiana Esperanza Project with a pledge of $310,000 over four years. The project will provide legal services in an attempt to protect immigrant children and assure their sanctuary in the U.S. remains documented. Want to join The Reillys and protect the children? Contact us here.
Adoption experts says adoption not the best crisis response
Baton Rouge, LA— Louisiana’s only accredited provider for both international and domestic adoptions Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Baton Rouge (CCDBR) cautions families trying to adopt Nepalese orphans at this time.
“Just like following the Haitian earthquakes, people see images of children separated from their families on the news and want to help, but protecting the children and reuniting them with their families is the top priority,” said David C. Aguillard, CCDBR Executive Director. “As the immediate crisis recedes, adopting orphaned children may become an option. But international adoptions take time and professional expertise to safeguard the rights of all involved.”
Baton Rouge, LA--Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Baton Rouge (CCDBR) announced today that more immigrant children, all seeking safety from violence in Honduras, Guatemala, and El Salvador and living with guardians in Louisiana, will receive legal help from its Louisiana Esperanza Project (Esperanza). The agency was granted two new legal recruits—an attorney and paralegal--through the Equal Justice Works AmeriCorps Fellowship Program.
On April 25, a devastating 7.8-magnitude earthquake struck Nepal near Kathmandu, also affecting nearby parts of India. Avalanches were reported in the Himalayas, including on Mount Everest. The official death toll has surpassed 7,000.
CRS and their partner Caritas Nepal plan to support 15,000 families with emergency shelter, blankets, water treatment kits and hygiene kits. Because this region is known for earthquakes, CRS had prepositioned emergency aid in nearby Bihar, India. Temporary shelter kits, water purification kits and hygiene kits for 2,000 families–are being transported to Nepal for immediate distribution.
David Aguillard, Executive Director of Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Baton Rouge says Obama’s announcement is definitely a step in the right direction—albeit temporary and partial. “It will keep families together and give those that are undocumented a reason to enter a legal process, undergo a criminal background check, and pay their back taxes so they can fully be a part of our communities.”