Some of you may already know that Catholic Charities of Spokane has its fingers in a little bit of everything. It’s not just an administrative building down there by the hospitals. It’s a crucial part of Spokane’s history, and it’s future. It began in 1912 as the Catholic Social Betterment League and changed its name in the 40s as more parishes became involved. Today, just like the Catholic Diocese of Spokane, the agency serves 13 counties in Eastern Washington. Catholic Charities provides low-income senior housing to our older community (and our low-income disabled community), provides food and shelter to Spokane’s homeless community, helps young, single mothers, provides childcare and helps poor men, women and families transition to a better life. You’ve probably driven by some of their senior housing units a dozen times:
- O’Malley Apartments (99 units)
- Fahy Gardens and Fahy West Apartments (a total of 86 units)
- Cathedral Plaza (150 units)
- Delaney Apartments (84 units) (Oh, and did you know there’s an old jail cell in the basement?!)
Tracy Simmons is an award-winning journalist specializing in religion reporting and digital entrepreneurship. In her approximate 20 years on the religion beat, Simmons has tucked a notepad in her pocket and found some of her favorite stories aboard cargo ships in New Jersey, on a police chase in Albuquerque, in dusty Texas church bell towers, on the streets of New York and in tent cities in Haiti. Simmons has worked as a multimedia journalist for newspapers across New Mexico, Texas, Connecticut and Washington. She is the executive director of SpokaneFāVS.com, a digital journalism start-up covering religion news and commentary in Spokane, Washington. She also writes for The Spokesman-Review and national publications. She is a Scholarly Assistant Professor of Journalism at Washington State University.