Catholic Relief Services

Rating: 4.42 stars   59 reviews

Issues: Disaster Aid, Religion

Location: 228 West Lexington Street Baltimore MD 21201 USA

Mission:

Catholic Relief Services carries out the commitment of the Bishops of the United States to assist the poor and vulnerable overseas. We are motivated by the Gospel of Jesus Christ to cherish, preserve and uphold the sacredness and dignity of all human life, foster charity and justice, and embody Catholic social and moral teaching as we act to:

  • Promote human development by responding to major emergencies, fighting disease and poverty, and nurturing peaceful and just societies; and,
  • Serve Catholics in the United States as they live their faith in solidarity with their brothers and sisters around the world.

As part of the universal mission of the Catholic Church, we work with local, national and international Catholic institutions and structures, as well as other organizations, to assist people on the basis of need, not creed, race or nationality.


Direct beneficiaries per year: more than 100 million people
Geographic areas served: International
Programs: Catholic Relief Services is the official international humanitarian agency of the Catholic community in the United States. With more than 70 years of experience, we alleviate suffering and provide assistance to people in need in 91 countries, without regard to race, religion or nationality.
2014 Top-Rated Nonprofit
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More Info

EIN 13-5563422
888-277-7575
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Community Reviews

Rating: 5 stars  

1 person found this review helpful

CRS uses donations efficiently, and works with people "based on need, not creed". You don't have to be Catholic to support them or to receive helpf from them. Aid is non-sectarian and based on their belief that every human being deserves to live with dignity.

It is well known that they respond to emergency situations with short term emergency relief when needed ( the tsunami, Haitian earthquake), but just as importantly also on long term solutions - micro financing, education, peace-building, securing clean water supplies, HIV education and medication, helping farmers be more productive and self-sufficient. Their goal is not a culture of dependence on aid, but a planting the seeds for a live changing, culture changing improvements.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

working with the Patches of Hope program in Cambodia that provided work sewing quilts to women with HIV, and also hospice care when they became to sick to work.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

encourage them to be more visible - get there name out there so people think of them first when they wish to donate to a crisis or an ongoing development issue

How likely is it that you would recommend that a friend donate to this group?

Definitely

How likely are you to donate to this group again?

Definitely

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Review from Guidestar
Role: General Member of the Public
Rating: 5 stars  

service and accompaniment with those living at the margins and in emergency situations, regardless of nationality or creed. Employs local people to lead and partner on local problems to find sustainable solutions. Upholds the dignity of each human being and is a great representative of any U.S. Catholic or other engaged citizen of the world.

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1 previous review
Rating: 5 stars  

1 person found this review helpful

I've seen the work Catholic Relief Services does firsthand in Ghana, Africa, and have heard presentations stateside about the work they've done in Pakistan, Haiti, and Southeast Asia. I have made a purposeful effort to get to know the staff in my region and some from the national office. They all show a dedication to humanity and emphasize sound principles in assisting those in need. They emphasize development rather than simply charity, and empowerment of local people. They hire local people primarily and have only a small number of domestic staff in the United States. I respect so much that they serve those in needs from their religious principals, but they do not require or recruit those they serve to join or participate any particular religion or religious activity. They build partnerships with local members of the community and educate American donors in an effort toward global solidarity. They are my primary charitable organization because I believe they use their money so wisely and I admire their principles, their work, and their staff.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

In an immersion trip to Ghana, West Africa. I visited the free clinic they support and the saw the agriculture, health, and education headquarters in Tamale.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

make it better known!

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Review from Guidestar
Rating: 5 stars  

Catholic Relief Services saves thousands of lives and brings fresh water to those without!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Personal messages from those who were helped by them.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

None

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Review from Guidestar
Rating: 5 stars  

I have confidence that any money I donate to CRS goes to people who truly need it. I am a fan of the way the organization is set up with feet on the ground and established long-term relationships throughout the world so that money and time are not wasted when a crisis hits.

I also appreciate the way CRS communicates via Facebook, Twitter and E-mail. This communication keeps me up to date in a cost-effective and timely manner.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

seeing others in need helped by those who know what to do.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Nothing

Was your donation impactful?

Definitely

How likely is it that you would recommend that a friend donate to this group?

Definitely

How likely are you to donate to this group again?

Definitely

What specific problem, purpose, priority, or project prompted your gift?

None - wanted to choose one charity where my money would be put to good use.

What would you tell others about this organization?

It is trustworthy, efficient and effective.

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010

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Review from Guidestar
Rating: 5 stars  

CRS is a hands on relief organization that is always one of the first,if not the first relief organization on the ground helping those who need critcal supplies like food,water and shelter.They also are an organization that stays in country long after the publicity fades to continue helping victims rebuild their lives.money donated to CRS isn't tied up in overhead but is used to truly help those in need.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

being a contributor.i thoroughly checked how CRS used financial donations and was well satisfied how greater than 90 pennies per $ are used in aiding the needy.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

i would not change this organisation,instead i would try to change other organizations to immitate CRS.

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Review from Guidestar
Rating: 5 stars  

From the time I was a little girl I have known of the work of CRS. I have always been impressed with the efficiency of the organization and their responsiveness to donors. When I hear about a disaster somewhere in the world I think of CRS. I know that CRS stays for the long haul, that they don't just come for the "photo opportunity," but remain long after others are gone. Not only are they interested in disaster relief, but also in development and rebuilding.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Their responsivieness to donors.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Help them to spread the word far and wide about CRS

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Review from Guidestar
Rating: 5 stars  

I am very pleased with the way Catholic Relief Services reaches out all over the world to help the less fortunate regardless of the need and regardless of the person in need. They sponsor a lot of diverse programs that do more than just feed the hungry and care for the sick...they EMPOWER people and INSPIRE them. Since I am still a graduate student, I may not be able to donate as much as I would like to this organization, but it is a comfort to know that a good percentage of what I donate goes to those who need it most. I have recommended this organization to my friends and family and will certainly continue to do so. Keep up the good work and God bless you for all that you do!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Catholic Relief Services keeps me informed about how my donations are used as well as the successes in ongoing projects. I feel that my donations are put to good use and am very pleased with the manner in which this organization serves the less fortunate.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

My only suggestion is that this organization take advantage of networking sites such as twitter and facebook. I would also send more emails as opposed to snail mail.

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Review from Guidestar
Rating: 4 stars  

When disasters happen, or when our office staff are feeling generous, we always look to see what CRS is doing and where. Then we make our collection and send it, sometimes earmarked for a particular cause.
We can trust CRS to put the monies where asked, or where most needed, and we can trust them.
We are a multi-national and multi-racial staff, lucky to have what we do in a changing world, and willing to share it regularly with others.
We donated during hurricanes and tsunamis, earthquakes and floods. But it's regular donations "just because" that make our hears sing the loudest.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

the reports on FaceBook and research done online.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

have them keep on using social networking to get the word out about their efforts. Other needed changes are unknown

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Review from Guidestar
Rating: 5 stars  

Whenever there is a large scale crisis, I know that my donation to CRS will povide the most bang for the buck for the victims. CRS usually has a team in the ground wherever the greatest need is and they get right to work.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

About a month ago I heard a story on NPR about how CRS was distributing simple rock crushers in Haiti to facilitate the rubble cleanup and give people a way to help. I did a little cheer in my kitchen for CRS. That's how they operate. Just plain old common sense and a lot of hard work.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

No changes.

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Review from Guidestar
Rating: 5 stars  

11 people found this review helpful

For a number of years now, my wife and I have had $25.00 deducted from our checking account each month to go to CRS. We also give larger amounts to special church collections and directly to CRS; e.g., for earthquake relief and the like. While we are far from being large donors, we are consistent ones because CRS gives the overwhelming amount of funds that it collects to the intended beneficaries and that is a very important fact to us.

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

the fact that it gives by far most of the funds it collects to the intended beneficaries which means that its overhead costs are extremely low as compared to other charities and I, therefore, get the most bang out of my donated buck so to speak!

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every month

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010-5-01

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Review from Guidestar