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About ShareLife

 




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A Tradition of Catholic Charity

Caring for those in need is fundamental to who we are as Catholics in the Archdiocese of Toronto. Catholic agencies have been serving those among us who are poor, sick and marginalized for 176 years.

Many organizations that are an integral part of our social service network trace their roots to the Catholic Church, including Providence Healthcare, Covenant House, the Good Shepherd Centre, the Society of St. Vincent de Paul and Rosalie Hall, among others.

In 1927, the first diocese-wide charitable appeal was conducted to support the Catholic Charities family of agencies in Toronto. The fundraising goal of $100,000 was reached in just four days.

On March 19, 1976, after consulting with stakeholders, Archbishop Philip Pocock announced that the Council of Catholic Charities was withdrawing from the United Way and striking out on its own. In his statement, Archbishop Pocock said, “I am prepared to take the responsibility of sustaining the services of Catholic Charities to the community.”

The member agencies of the Council of Catholic Charities that received funding at that time included Catholic Settlement House Day Nursery, Providence Villa (now Providence Healthcare), Columbus Boys’ Camp (now Camp Ozanam), St. Elizabeth Visiting Nurses Association (now St. Elizabeth Health Care), Catholic Family Services of Toronto, Sancta Maria House and Rosalie Hall.

Since ShareLife’s inception, its number of agencies has increased to more than 40, reflecting the growing needs of our community. Program areas include children and youth, families, single and teen parents, elderly people, people with special needs, immigrants and refugees. ShareLife also funds the education of 80 seminarians at St. Augustine’s Seminary and Redemptoris Mater Seminary, as well as the formation of permanent deacons. Around the world, countless people receive assistance through ShareLife’s support of international missions and development projects.

Forty-two years after Archbishop Pocock established ShareLife, our agencies continue to provide unconditional care, regardless of religious or cultural affiliation. We invite you to help us extend this legacy by “Living the Gospel” in 2018.