Over the past several months Catholic Charities has received a tremendous increase in requests for assistance due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and we know that there are even greater numbers of people in need of our help. In lieu of our traditional Voice of Catholic Charities column this month, we would like to use this space to provide a summary of our most-requested services during this unprecedented time, along with contact information. Information and referral: Catholic Charities’ Call Center helps callers with a wide variety of needs and connects them to programs within Catholic Charities or other community agencies. Call 312-655-7700 in Cook County and 847-782-4000 in Lake County. We can also be emailed at email@example.com. To-go meals: In place of our traditional Evening Supper Program that offers hot meals to anyone in need in communal settings, Catholic Charities is offering to-go meals at the following locations: St. Vincent Center, 721 N. LaSalle St., Chicago, Monday-Friday, 4 p.m.; Catholic Charities North/Northwest Regional Services Office 1717 Rand Road, Des Plaines, Tuesday and Thursday, 4 p.m.; St. Blase Parish 7438 W. 61st Place, Summit, Wednesday, 4 p.m. Meals are available to anyone in need and no preregistration is required. Meals for seniors: In lieu of congregate dining, seniors are able to pick up to-go meals in multiple locations in Lake and McHenry counties. Visit catholiccharities.net (COVID Services/Seniors) or call 847-782-4170 for specific locations. Meals-to-go are also being provided at all of the City of Chicago and suburban Cook County senior centers. Visit our website or call 312-655-7470 for information. Seniors may also qualify for home-delivered meals by calling their local Care Coordination Unit. Food pantries: Often in cooperation with neighborhood parishes, Catholic Charities operates nine food pantries and several newly created “pop-up” food pantries throughout the city of Chicago (Englewood, Back of the Yards, Near North, Uptown), suburban Cook County (Cicero, Des Plaines, Park Forest, Summit) and Lake County (Waukegan). Visit catholiccharities.net (COVID Services/Food Pantries) or call 312-655-7700 for addresses and service hours. Counseling support hotline: Staffed by master’s-level clinicians, this newly created hotline is for anyone who needs one-time or immediate help coping with grief, stress, anxiety or depression. Referral for on-going support available. Call 312-948-6951 Monday-Friday, 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m.; after hours, leave a message and a counselor will call back. Counseling: Catholic Charities provides a wide range of professional counseling services to children, youth, families and individuals experiencing grief, trauma, substance use disorder, domestic violence and behavioral and emotional issues. Call 312-655-7725, Monday-Friday, 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Callers will be assessed and directed to the most appropriate Catholic Charities program. Services are currently provided virtually or over the phone. A Call to Prayer: Established in partnership with the Archdiocese of Chicago, this newly created hotline is staffed by more than 75 English-, Spanish- and Polish-speaking volunteers and provides the comfort and support of a listening ear to pray with. Open daily 9 a.m.-9 p.m., or prayer requests can be emailed. Call 312-741-3388 or firstname.lastname@example.org; email@example.com; firstname.lastname@example.org. Financial, rent or utility assistance: A limited amount of one-time emergency assistance is available to those who qualify. In Chicago dial 311; in suburban Cook 877-426-6515; and in Lake County 847-782-4000. Due to the high volume of calls, people are encouraged to first view the on-line questionnaire at catholiccharities.net to determine eligibility. Non-medical, non-emergency help: Within the City of Chicago, people can call 311 and be connected with Catholic Charities Mobile Outreach Program that provides transportation to shelter for those experiencing homelessness, well-being checks for seniors, delivery of emergency food and assistance for victims of fires and other disasters. Volunteers and donations: Catholic Charities is always in need of and tremendously appreciative of all volunteers and donations. Current volunteer opportunities can be seen at catholiccharities.net (Get Involved), or by calling 312-655-7557; donations can be made at catholiccharities.net or by calling 312-948-6087.