Helping Seniors Move Past Depression and Isolation Into Meaningful Community

After a healthy and vibrant life, things had changed. Looking back at that dark period, Jim now says, he had lost his will to live.

Jim owned his own company for 40 years, holds a Ph.D, and volunteered as a social worker for a time. But when he retired, his family moved into another state, many of his old friends had moved or passed away, and he found himself sinking into depression, heavy alcohol use, and drug abuse.

After a lifetime of vibrant community, seniors can feel increasingly isolated as they age. For some, the transition can lead to depression – or worse. For seniors like Jim, Catholic Social Services can be a life-saving Godsend.

Staff helped provide Jim both the emotional and practical support he needed to get sober and back on track. Working one-on-one with counselors and support staff, he was connected to local resources, groups, and partners to help keep him accountable and sober. They worked with Jim to help create a budget, pay down debts, pay bills on time, and begin saving again.

Most importantly, they helped him find a new home near by a church with a healthy community, where he now attends daily Mass and has built new friendships. Jim’s improved health, sobriety, and renewed desire to live have helped him reconnect with his son and his family. He is now a very proud, loving father and grandfather. His most recent greatest accomplishment: teaching his 4 year old granddaughter how to read. Without Catholic Social Services, Jim says, he “might not have made it.”

Advocacy & Social Policy Initiatives

CCUSA's Advocacy and Social Policy team advocates for policies that uphold human dignity and promote integral human development. Informed by the experience of local Catholic Charities agencies, the team urges policy makers to encounter the needy and vulnerable in their communities and to create policies which assist and support them.

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