Supporting the Physically & Emotionally Challenged

The senior adjusting to recent blindness, the developmentally disabled child, and the emotionally challenged adult need the intensive care and support provided by Catholic Charities to live with dignity and in safety. Through a network of specialized services, Catholic Charities cares compassionately for the most vulnerable New Yorkers – non-Catholics and Catholics alike. Learn how our agencies help the most vulnerable: those with developmental disabilities, abused and neglected children, adults with mental illness, teenagers and adults dealing with alcohol and substance abuse.


  • 1,843 pre-school children helped through early intervention and special  education classes
  • 825 individuals cared for in safe and secure residences
  • 1,011 individuals with mental illnesses supported in their own apartments
  • 271 individuals receiving therapy to deal with their challenges
  • 11,752 teenagers and adults treated for substance abuse
  • 7,988  visually and hearing impaired individuals participating in adaptive training

For more information about a particular program and/or service, navigate the tabs below:

  • Alcohol & Substance Abuse

    Catholic Charities provides alcohol and substance abuse treatment and support for those seeking recovery and for the families who love them.

    We understand that addiction is complex and has devastating impacts on communities.  Catholic Charities programs are designed to help individuals and their families through the recovery process.  Our programs range from outpatient clinics and support groups to inpatient recovery programs.

    Find a Catholic Charities agency that offers addiction services. 

  • Supportive Housing for People with Mental Illness

    Serious, persistent mental illness often makes it hard to find and keep a home. Yet a safe, supportive home is fundamental for treatment and recovery.

    Catholic Charities offers a range of housing options for people struggling with mental illness.  Our supportive, affordable housing is integrated into the community.  We offer small community residences with closely supervised group living arrangements for people with severe mental illness.  We also offer apartments and single rooms with readily available support staff for higher functioning individuals.

    Find a Catholic Charities agency for supportive housing for persons with mental illness. 

  • Residences for Special Needs

    Catholic Charities agencies provide professional care with compassion and dignity to individuals whose needs are too complex to be met at home. Our residences offer a range of support and services for children with HIV or other serious illnesses.  They care for adults with developmental disabilities.  And they serve those with multiple needs including deafness and mental illness to promote healthy, dignified lives.

    Eligibility for many of these programs is determined by City and State regulations.

    Find a Catholic Charities agency that offers residences for those with special needs. 

  • Early Intervention & Special Education

    Learning that a child has a developmental disability can overwhelm and devastate a family.  But prompt action during this difficult time -- including early diagnosis and intervention -- can change a child’s future.

    Catholic Charities steps in by offering a range of services. 

    Services for children from birth to age three diagnosed with developmental delays include: 

    • Screening and evaluation
    • Psychological testing and medical consultation
    • Special education 
    • Family counseling 
    • Speech, physical and occupational therapies
    • Service coordination to make sure these multiple intervention programs work together 

    Special education pre-school services for three-to-five-year-old children diagnosed with developmental delays:

    • Prepare children for entry into the regular school system
    • Tailor curriculum to meet children’s individual needs
    • Emphasize play and developmentally appropriate activities
    • Improve children’s socialization, language, movement and self-help skills.
    • Support parents to help manage the impact of their child’s disability on their family.

    Eligibility for these programs is determined by City and State regulations.

    Find a Catholic Charities agency that offers early intervention and special education programs

  • Respite for Caregivers

    At Catholic Charities we understand that caring for an adult or child with developmental disabilities can be exhausting, isolating and overwhelming. We also know caregivers do best when given support.

    Our respite services offer short-term breaks.  Qualified professionals care for family members with special needs for a few days so caregivers can rest and recuperate.

    We also offer ongoing support when disabled family members return home.

    Find a Catholic Charities agency that offers caregiver respite.

  • Adaptive Services for People with Hearing & Visual Impairments

    Services for the Blind and Visually Impaired

    Catholic Charities’ specialized programs remove barriers, create solutions and expand possibilities so people with vision loss can achieve their full potential.

    Our wide range of services includes: 

    • Travel/orientation and mobility instruction 
    • Personal daily/independent living skills 
    • Education and English as a Second Language programs
    • Computer training/assistive technology
    • Employment training and placement
    • Low-vision services and devices 
    • Information, referrals and other supports 

    Contact these sites for help:

    Catholic Guild for the Blind
    (New York City area)
    1011 First Ave.
    New York, NY  10022

    Catholic Guild for the Blind
    (Mid-Hudson Valley)
    218 Church St.
    Poughkeepsie, NY  12601

    Lavelle School for the Blind
    3830 Paulding Ave.
    Bronx, NY  10469

    Xavier Society for the Blind
    154 East 23 St.
    New York, NY  10010

    Services for the Deaf and Hearing Impaired

    Catholic Charities also offers specialized programs for those who are deaf or hearing impaired. Our programs include educational and social services for children and adults.  In addition, we offer religious education and preparation to receive holy sacraments.

    Contact this site for help:

    St. Joseph’s School for the Deaf
    1000 Hutchinson River Parkway
    Bronx, NY 10465

    Find a Catholic Charities Agency that can help you with services for hearing and visual impairments.

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