Since 2013, we have been fortunate to have Catholic Charities working with us on our site two days a month .  The work began through a CCHD grant designated to provide extended family support services and case management services.   Sister Isaac felt it was a great way of connecting our guests to other resources in areas of employment, education, health, and financial literacy.  Patricia Gutierrez Tootoo, a caseworker with the Catholic Charities Cape Fear office at the Harrelson Center, has been coming in twice a month. Through her time with us, she has worked to connect visitors to community resources and services, and she researches employment opportunities, publishing a list we can share with guests all month.

 She has worked to bring community presenters from various agencies:

  • New Hanover County Division of Workforce Solutions spoke about the Food and Nutrition Services Employment & Training Program.
  • Phoenix Hometown Hires spoke about their employment services and financial literacy workshops.
  • Cape Fear Community College spoke about free Basic Skills classes such as GED, Adult High School, ESL, and Career Readiness.
  • Cape Fear Literacy Council spoke about their free adult literacy classes including GED and ESL
  • Smart Start of New Hanover County spoke about the Parents as Teacher Program and other services for families with young children.
  • Patient Navigator from Cape Fear Health Net provided information on access to healthcare.
  • Coastal Horizons spoke about their mental health programs and services.

In addition, she always makes herself available as an interviewer and/or interpreter on the days she’s with us.

Here’s what Patricia has to say about working at the Center: “What I like most of being at the outreach is the way we both work together to provide services to clients.  It’s a great way for two agencies to connect and bridge services. It’s about building relationships with you and your volunteers to better serve individuals and families in the Cape Fear area.  Thank you for having me there on the 2nd and 4th Wednesday of month!”.

And we are thankful to have her with us!