We have great and excellent news that we want to share with you. Last May, the Board of Directors of the Conrad N. Hilton Foundation approved an application for support made by our Congregation for our Catholic Sisters Inter-Congregational Network for migrants and the economic empowerment of youth and families project.
The project is based on an initiative of the Conrad N. Hilton Foundation, which aims to position Catholic Sisters as global leaders in sustainable human development. Our project proposal focuses on the strategy of reinforcing and supporting the vitality, strength and sustainability of the congregations in order to respond effectively to the needs of the communities served by their ministries in Mexico and the United States.
The project’s mission is to develop effective and sustainable inter-congregational and inter-ministerial capacity to respond to the urgent and emerging needs of our impoverished communities in the United States and Mexico.
This project is inter-ministerial and inter-congregational. Different congregations and different ministries will be participating.
The two main activities of the project and on which all work will be focused are:
- To develop the operational skills of women religious working in ministries.
This activity will develop the operational skills of the communities in need and the ministries that serve them. The areas to be developed will be the purchase and distribution of goods and services, alignment and collaborative relationships, money and financial management, and the establishment of contracts and agreements for marketing activities.
These courses will be taught virtually so that all Sisters can access them from wherever they are. All Sisters can participate.
- Provide the necessary resources to vulnerable communities (indigenous, migrants, youth, families) to strengthen them.
This activity will support ministries (projects) working in the areas of health care, educational support, support to families and artisan collectives and agricultural activities with the necessary resources.
This support will be either financial or from student teams through the Service Learning component (SSL). This component will provide students with productive experiences with the objective of forming future leaders, professionals and engaged and informed citizens.
The Conrad N. Hilton Foundation granted us 1.8 million USD to cover this work over a three-year period, starting June 1, 2021 and ending May 30, 2024. It was agreed that the project would have a six-month planning phase (Jul – Dec 2021). The official start-up date is January 2022.
At the beginning of the project, there are 35 congregations collaborating directly and indirectly and 25 participating ministries. We also have two academic partners, the University of Monterrey and the University of the Incarnate Word, which will support the project activities.
The number of beneficiaries is expected to be approximately 150,000 people.
Participating ministries and congregations are located in the United States and Mexico.
We started with 25 ministries but we want more ministries and congregations to join over the next 3 years.
We are infinitely grateful to the members of the Hilton Foundation for their support and confidence in us, to all the participating congregations, to all the ministries, to our academic partners and to you, our donors. Your support will be key to the success of this project.