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Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Laredo

 

Catholic Charities Logo: 

The logo represents the following:

The Church outline signifies: 

  1. The importance of our church in our community, but also sanctuary our church offers.
  2. The church silhouette also represents two inverted C’s, which are representative of the C’s for Catholic Charities.

The Cross signifies the presence of our LORD in everything we do for we serve our LORD by serving others.

History and Mission

Catholic Charities-Diocese of Laredo (CCDOL) is a non-profit organization under the auspices of the Diocese of Laredo. As a multi-program human services agency, CCDOL is a community-based organization that has been serving the people of the  Diocese of Laredo, located on the Mexican-American border, serving the areas Dimmit, Jim Hogg, La Salle, Maverick, Webb, Zapata, and Zavala counties since the 1970's.

CCDOL was originally established as Laredo Family Counseling Services, with the objective of providing counseling for emotional and/ or psychological problems affecting Laredo families. Since that time, CCDOL has grown to become a leader in providing various direct services to individuals and families who live in economically distressed areas.

The mission statement:  Catholic Charities-Diocese of Laredo is committed to serving the emergency needs of the indigent and believe that all people have the right to live in an environment that is free of abuse, violence, fear and oppression. 

Vision Statement:  Find solutions to reduce poverty in our community 

 Catholic Charities-Diocese of Laredo strives to strengthen and empower families through its diverse programs and social services. Services reflect the needs of the area's population and the demographic make-up of the South Texas border. Its wide range of programs and resources enables CCDOL to meet the unique needs of the community and its people.

All program services are provided without regard to religion, race, income, disability, or sexual orientation.

Services and Programs

Emergency Assistance

Working to reduce poverty by assisting families with utility & rental assistance, ensuring that they do not lose their homes due to hardships, such as loss of a job, loss of a spouse or reduction in work hours.  Hardships often prevent them from paying their rent and/or living with basic utility needs such as electricity, water & gas. Through this program, we ensure homelessness prevention, by helping families remain in their homes.  We have served hundreds of families, but received thousands of inquiries for assistance. 

More specifically, CCDOL provides support to individuals and families through the following programs and events:

  • Assistance with rent payments
  • Homelessness assistance
  • Assistance with utility payments
  • Food distribution and clothes distribution
  • Referrals to other community resources

Medical Mission 

In 2009, the Medical Missionaries of Divine Mercy (MMDM), at the request of Bishop James A. Tamayo, DD, partnered with the Diocese of Laredo and launched the medical mission to serve the indigent healthcare needs in our community. The MMDM is a group of medical doctors, dentist, optometrists, nurses, priests, deacons and volunteers from St. Laurence Catholic Church in the Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston.  Every year, over 1,200 poor and disadvantaged people are provided with free medical, dental exams/ extractions, vision and hearing screening, chiropractic and physical therapy, as well as medical supplies such as wheelchairs. In addition, for those who wish, spiritual nourishment in the form of Healing Services are provided in several parishes.  The Annual Medical Mission is held the first week of November at San Luis Rey Parish, 3502 Sanders Ave. and is an excellent opportunity for those needing attention to be served by professional persons in the health field.

It is estimated that approximately 1,200 people is served every year.  The services provided are:

  • General Medical Check Ups
  • Dental care including check-ups, x-rays, cleaning, extractions
  • Vision Care that includes eye exams and distribution of glasses
  • Prescription medications given under a physician’s supervision
  • Medical equipment including physical therapy equipment
  • Celebration of daily Mass, confessions and spiritual services

For more information on the Medical Mission, please visit the following two links:

Facilities and Equipment 

Missionary Testimonial Video

Home Repairs Mission 

We also collaborate with St. Ann's Catholic Parish of Coppell, TX - Diocese of Dallas and host a Youth Mission to repair homes during the summer to promote a better quality of life for our community members. Thousands of families have been able to enjoy a meal, celebrate the holidays, stay warm and/or cool during the winter and summer days…due our community’s generosity.

Disaster Relief

Disasters strike unexpectedly and affect hundreds in our community who are often left without basic needs, such as electricity, water, food, shelter and clothing.  Catholic Charities is present to assess and evaluate the nature of the disaster and to provide the necessary aid, whether it be temporary or permanent shelter, food, clothing and supplies. 

Humanitarian Relief Services

We assist immigrant families & individuals released from immigration detention centers or who find themselves in our community and are in need of assistance. Services offered: transportation, clothes distribution & travel care packages, which include water, snacks, a throw blanket and a personal hygiene package. Approximately 3000 families and individuals have received services through our Humanitarian efforts.

Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA Program)

CCDOL serves every year as a site for the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) Program. VITA is a free income tax service that has been implemented since 2014 to help those living at or below the poverty level and receive the maximum tax refund allowable. Annually, CCDOL completes over 350 tax returns, which have resulted in over $750,000.00 in taxes refunded to its clients on a yearly basis. 

Food Drives—Toy Drives—Blanket Drives & MISSIONS

Throughout the year, especially during the Holidays, Catholic Charities distributes hundreds of food baskets, turkey dinners, Christmas gifts, blankets, fans and/or heaters to the needy in our community. CCDOL provides food bags and turkeys in observance of Thanksgiving Day to over 275 families on a yearly basis.  Participants at the CCDOL Senior Center also receive over 50 Thanksgiving food bags every year.

CCDOL celebrates Christmas in El Cenizo, TX, (a rural community along the banks of the Rio Grande), for families of that community. Approximately 100 families receive food baskets, turkeys & blankets and approximately 400 children receive toys, goodies and a hygiene packet. In addition, over 50 elderly individuals receive blankets, food baskets and turkeys as well.  Children have an opportunity to participate in an array of activities, such as decorating Christmas crafts and coloring.  

During December of every year, CCDOL celebrates Christmas Give-away event for families in Diocesan community.  Approximately 175 families receive food bags, 20 pounds of frozen chicken and two gallons of Hominy.  Approximately 350 children also receive toys during this Christmas event.

Immigration Services

This program has assisted members of the community since 1984 with responsibilities of becoming an immigrant or U S citizen. Our immigration department is a long standing and credible program that strives in keeping families unified by providing low cost immigration preparation & processing services.

We educate the community and create awareness with weekly public information given live on local news. In addition, radio announcements and “know your rights workshops” are provided throughout the year. The information provided to the community includes not only the available services but also to 1). Identify scammers 2). Detect fraudulent services 3). How to respond to Immigration Authorities and 4). Civil rights in the U.S. 

Immigration Services & Outreach Activities provided are:

  • Naturalization
  • Adjustment of Status
  • Employment Authorization
  • Visa Petitions
  • DACA
  • Consultations
  • Know Your Rights Workshops
  • Naturalization Workshops

Consultations are available Tuesday and Thursdays from 9am to 11am to 1pm to 3pm.   Consultation Fee is $50.00. 

Senior Center Program

The Senior Center serves as a second home to many of its participants and ensures that activities are designed to keep seniors mentally active, spiritually motivated and physically fit.

The daily average attendance at the center is 50 seniors.   Annually, the program serves approximately 12,250 hot meals, ensuring seniors received daily nourishment. 

Participants benefit from health, fitness, and wellness programs; volunteer opportunities; social and recreational activities; and educational and arts programs. In partnership with a local agency, the center provides the seniors with transportation to and from the center, to the pharmacy, grocery store and other local establishments, where seniors are able to purchase household necessities. The Senior Center offers a safe place for the elderly to engage with others, and where they receive emotional, mental, and spiritual support, especially after the loss of a spouse or child. The majority of the senior participants are find themselves alone after losing their spouse.

Senior Center is located at 1701 Main Street.  Phone # 956 722-3629.

Catholic Charities – Diocese of Laredo serves everyone regardless of religion or faith.

Contact Information

1919 Cedar Ave.
(corner of Cedar Avenue / Fremont St.)
Laredo, Texas 78040

(956) 722-2443
Fax: (956) 725-2238

Monday through Friday
8:00 am - 12:00 pm
1:00 pm - 5:00 pm


Benjamin De La Garza
Executive Director

Raul Moreno
Accounting Clerk
moreno@ccdol.org

Rick Valdez
Social & Human Services Assistant
rvaldez@ccdol.org

Edith Cedillo
Immigration Program Manager
ecedillo@ccdol.org

Teresa De La Garza
Immigration Specialist 
tdelagarza@ccdol.org

Vanessa Guerrero
Immigration Assistant
vguerrero@ccdol.org

Edgar Martinez
Immigration Clerk
emartinez@ccdol.org

Crystal Rodriguez
Receptionist
crodriguez@ccdol.org

Joe Barron
Senior Center Program Manager
jbarron@ccdol.org

Margie Ledesma
Senior Center Assistant
mledesma@ccdol.org

Elsa Lucio
Senior Center Assistant
elucio@ccdol.org

Arturo Fuentes
Maintenance
afuentes@ccdol.org