Catholic Church in Chicago to sponsor two refugee families

O.K. So what is so interesting about that?

They are talking about raising $1600 privately to sponsor a family for the first three months, and that is about what Catholic Charities or the Bishops get per family from the US taxpayer.  So does this mean that since the local church will sponsor for three months, the local Catholic Charities contractor gets to pocket what they got from the feds for the same family?

I’ve been an advocate for private sponsorship from the earliest days of writing this blog, HOWEVER, my plan would leave the contractor-middleman (in this case some bureaucracy of the Church out of it), and my reform suggestion is that the family be supported privately for a year or two (three months is hardly time enough to find a job and be self-sufficient) with NO dependence on taxpayer-funded social services.  In that way, the parishioners wishing to help a family would be doing so out of a purely private charitable motivation and there would be a heightened opportunity for the family to truly assimilate.

Here is the story from Chicago.  Again, does this mean the funds received by the contractor for this family can be pocketed?

RIVERSIDE – Earlier this year, St. Mary Parish of Riverside started an initiative to help refugee families resettling in Chicago become self-sufficient in three months by providing housing, job opportunities, financial support and a medium to develop relationships with the church’s parishioners.

St. Mary Parish began its Refugee Sponsorship Committee in March in collaboration with the Catholic Charities Refugee Resettlement program and plans to help resettle two families by the end of this year.

It needs to raise $1,600 per family to be able to supply services, including a welcome pack, subsidized rent for 90 days, an apartment in Rodgers Park, financial help and assistance in finding a job.

The church has raised $1,556 so far and has furniture in storage for the potential apartment.

“The goal is to ease [them] in,” Dalia Rocotello, a member of the Refugee Sponsorship Committee said.

To be clear, my plan would naturally limit the number of refugees entering the US by the amount of private charity available for their care until they are truly on their feet.

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