CCUSA announces 2023 Volunteer of the Year

April 20, 2023

Alexandria, Va. – Catholic Charities USA (CCUSA) has selected Trang Coulon, a dedicated volunteer with Catholic Charities of Eastern Oklahoma, as the 2023 CCUSA Volunteer of the Year.

Coulon serves in a lead role in The Market at Catholic Charities, a ministry that invites neighbors in need to select their own food in a no-cost market. She ensures The Market runs smoothly, training new volunteers, assisting clients and inspiring everyone she encounters. A volunteer since 2014, Coulon devoted close to 500 hours of service to the agency in 2022 alone.

Over time, Coulon observed that many of the individuals visiting The Market needed additional basic necessities beyond what was available. She submitted a proposal encouraging the agency to establish an emergency assistance closet for those who are homeless. The Matthew:25 Closet, which Coulon now runs with her husband and children, has become a vital resource offering socks, hats, gloves, coats, small toiletries, rosaries and information about where people in crisis can go to get additional help.

“Our mission at Catholic Charities is carried out by dedicated volunteers who seek Christ in the poor,” said Deacon Kevin Sartorius, CEO of Catholic Charities of Eastern Oklahoma. “This is so evident in the humble service provided by Trang. She shows dignity to her coworkers and to everyone who graces our door. It is a blessing that we are able to work alongside her.”

The CCUSA Volunteer of the Year Award, given annually since 1998, is granted to an individual who embodies the mission of CCUSA to provide critical services to those in need, advocate for justice in social structures and call the entire Church and other people of good will to do the same. Catholic Charities agencies across the U.S. nominate candidates for the award from nearly 300,000 volunteers.

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