By ROB HERBST
The Catholic Week
ROBERTSDALE — Catholic Social Services of Baldwin County in Robertsdale serves about 2,500 people each year. Now CSS can better assist those in need with an enhanced facility.
Newly-expanded and renovated CSS of Baldwin County was unveiled Nov. 15 as Archbishop Thomas J. Rodi blessed the facility. The $600,000 renovation project includes new workspace for CSS’s To Be Options for Women, which provides assistance and education for new and expecting mothers. The facility’s Thrift Shop also has a new sorting/donation processing area.
“Baldwin County is growing, but also the needs of neighbor are growing,” Archbishop Thomas J. Rodi said. “There are many people in need and here is a Catholic Social Services center that helps people of all sorts of backgrounds, regardless of what religion or no religion that they may be, with food, with clothing, with help with rent and utilities bills, and help with counseling for individuals and families.
“To have a larger facility, a better facility is going to help us serve neighbor.”
It is estimated more than 90 percent of those who are helped are not Catholic.
“Baldwin County is growing, so we need to keep up with the county,” said CSS of Baldwin County Director Phyllis Beam.
“This is unbelievable. To see the fruition of all of our work is special.
“We’ll have more room, more items so we can help people with furniture and clothing. We’re able to accept more items because we have more room. The money increases our revenue so we can help more people.”
Before moving into new facilities, volunteers often worked in portable buildings outside the main facility.
“I’m so glad to have the volunteers included in the building,” Beam said. “Now they are part of the building and have more of a sense of being part of Catholic Social Services.”