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Our Mission

Catholic Volunteer Network fosters and promotes full-time domestic and international faith-based volunteer service opportunities for people of all ages, backgrounds, and skills. As the leading membership organization of Christian volunteer and mission programs, we support and enhance the work of our members through volunteer recruitment, training and resources, networking opportunities, and advocacy.

Our Vision

Through service rooted in faith, all will know the opportunity to impact the world and be transformed.

Our Core Values

We work from Gospel-based principles.
We promote social justice for all, standing in solidarity with the poor.
We advocate on behalf of faith-based volunteerism.
We strive to be inclusive and collaborative.
We commit to excellence in the quality of our services.
We steward our fiscal resources with care and gratitude.

Our Commitment to Diversity and Racial Justice

Catholic Volunteer Network respects and upholds the dignity of all persons regardless of the identities they hold. As we expand our conversations and programming with our members about present day structural injustices and their ties to oppressive histories, CVN dedicates itself to pairing those discussions with action to stop our own participation in the systems of oppression.

We believe that creating a just and diverse environment is more than an ideal. These are our core commitments that we invite our members to share:

  • We strive to create space for all persons to serve within the CVN community – regardless of differences.
  • We welcome persons of every race, religion, culture, age, gender identity, sexual orientation, physical or emotional ability, immigration status, economic situation, and family composition.
  • We celebrate all persons regardless of where they may be on their spiritual journey. We value persons of all faith traditions, those with no faith tradition, as well as those who are questioning and exploring.
  • We are guided by the light of goodwill, humility, and hospitality as we work to extend volunteer opportunities to all persons in all places.
  • Our Christian roots form the foundation of our core commitments. We work to be a community that follows Jesus’ example. We stand in agreement with Catholic Social Teaching, which upholds the life, dignity, and equality of all human beings.

People

Staff

Katie Delaney New Staff Photo 9.6.18

Katie Delaney

Program Manager, From Service to Sisterhood
301.270.0900 x 20 / Email

Katie is excited to join Catholic Volunteer Network as Program Manager, From Service to Sisterhood. After graduating from Franklin and Marshall College in 2012, she spent two years as a Lasallian Volunteer in Racine, Wisconsin. Katie went on to receive a M.A. in Leadership from Saint Mary’s College of California, and then traveled to Santiago, Chile, where she served as a Good Shepherd Volunteer from 2016-2017.

Talk to Katie about...resources for vocational discernment, the From Service to Sisterhood initative, and funding opportunities for congregations of women religious.

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Sarah Hammel

Membership Coordinator
301.270.0900 x 11 / Email

Sarah, a Michigan native, graduated from Dominican University(IL) where she majored in Corporate Communications and minored in Social Justice Civic Engagement. After graduation Sarah spent a year serving with Dominican Volunteers USA as a Case Manager at Catholic Charities Refugee Resettlement in Atlanta from 2014-2015.

Talk to Sarah about…benefits and resources for member programs, inquiries from prospective members, the annual RESPONSE directory, and the CVN National Conference.

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Mike McCormick

Outreach Coordinator
301.270.0900 x 19 / Email

Mike, a native of New York, graduated from Elon University in North Carolina with a focus on communications and creative writing. In 2014, he spent a year with the Augustinian Volunteers, serving at HELP of Ojai, a social services nonprofit in Ojai Valley, CA. Mike joined the CVN team in the fall of 2016 in the new role of Resources Coordinator.

Talk to Mike about… campus partnerships and programs, and resources for current and former volunteers.

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Katie Mulembe

Director of Operations
301.270.0900 x 14 / Email

After graduating from the University of Dayton, Katie journeyed to Zambia, Africa, where she served as a missioner with the Franciscan Mission Service for 3 years. During that time she developed programming for children impacted by HIV/AIDS. Soon after completing her mission work in 2007, Katie was drawn to the mission of Catholic Volunteer Network and joined the team. She now serves as the Director of Operations.

Talk to Katie about…national partnerships, media outreach, CVN's diversity and anti-racism work, social media collaboration, and the CVN website.

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Erin Roberts

Development & Communications Manager
301.270.0900 x 10 / Email

Erin graduated from Yale University, earned an MA at Syracuse, and then spent over 10 years in New York City helping non-profit organizations raise money and tell their stories. After going back to school for an MFA at University of Southern Maine and moving to the DC area, she learned about Catholic Volunteer Network’s work and mission and immediately wanted to be part of the team. She joined CVN in early 2019 in the role of Development & Communications Manager.

YonceShelton

Yonce Shelton

Executive Director
301.270.0900 x 18 / Email

Yonce joins CVN after a decade helping individuals and communities integrate faith, service, and vocational discernment. He has supported volunteers and staff with two CVN member programs sponsored by the United Church of Christ, and helped develop their programming and recruitment efforts. In addition, he has provided pastoral leadership in two community churches and offered spiritual direction/pastoral counseling to young adults and leaders in ministry and nonprofit work. Yonce’s career began as an aide to U.S. Congressman Rick Boucher (Virginia). He was later the senior policy director for Sojourners. His master's degrees are in Theological Studies (Wesley Theological Seminary) and Pastoral Counseling (Loyola University in Maryland).

Talk to Yonce about...organizational vision and direction, strategic partnerships, CVN's Board of Directors and governance, and national advocacy.

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Teresa Smith

Accountant
301.270.0900 x 12 / Email

Teresa has been with Catholic Volunteer Network for over 12 years, serving as the accountant. She graduated from the University of Maryland, and currently resides in Silver Spring, MD.

Board

Episcopal Advisor

Bishop Oscar Azarcon Solis
Bishop of Salt Lake City

Chair

Mr. Thomas P. Casey
Boys Hope Girls Hope International
Bridgeton, MO

Vice-Chair

Ms. Monica Thom Konschnik
Catholic Apostolate Center
Hyattsville, MD

SECRETARY-TREASURER

Mr. Tom Branen
America's Service Commissions
Washington, DC

Members

Ms. Valarie Amica
Catholic Volunteers in Florida
Orlando, FL

Rev. Glenn Balzer
First Mennonite Church of Denver
Denver, CO

Ms. Phyllis Barker
Chicago, IL

Ms. Beverly Bond
Beverly Bond Strategic Resource Development
Nashville, TN

Mr. Colin Crowell
Twitter
Washington, DC

Ms. Kate Daly
Boston College
Chestnut Hill, MA

 

Mr. Tom King
Loyola Marymount University/Ignatian Service Corps
Los Angeles, CA

Mr. Alexander LaPoint
FrancisCorps
Syracuse, NY

Ms. Pat Moran
Change A Heart Franciscan Volunteer Program
Pittsburgh, PA

Ms. Marian Uba
Mercy Volunteer Corps
Gwynedd Valley, PA

Sr. Caroljean Willie
Sisters of Charity of Cincinnati
Cincinnati, OH

 

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History

Begun in the Catholic Archdiocese of Newark (New Jersey) in 1963, Catholic Volunteer Network was originally known as the Newark Liaison Foreign and Domestic Lay Apostolate. Fr. George Mader, a priest of the Archdiocese, petitioned then Archbishop Thomas Boland, for permission to begin a “Church Peace Corps” after his sister, Patricia, had served for a year as a volunteer in Farmville, North Carolina with the Mission Helpers of the Sacred Heart. He wanted to promote such lay volunteer service and to encourage others to support it.

The first issue of RESPONSE, a directory of faith-based volunteer opportunities, was published in 1965 (and continues to this day). In 1971, the organization, by then known as Newark International Liaison, was first listed in the Official Catholic Directory. Two years later, International Liaison became a “coalition” of various mission agencies, the purpose of which was to act as an instrument through which policies might be recommended and issues discussed.

In 1975, the organization, by then called the International Liaison for Lay Volunteer Ministry (ILLVM), moved to Washington, DC. That same year, Bishop Joseph Francis, SVD, auxiliary bishop of Newark, became the organization’s Episcopal Advisor, a role he carried out until his death in 1997. In 1978, ILLVM hosted its first annual conference. In 1982, the organization’s name was changed to the International Liaison of Lay Volunteers in Mission (ILLVIM). The Father George Mader Award was instituted in 1988, in honor of the founder, to recognize individuals or groups that have been exemplary in fostering lay volunteer service. Fr. Mader passed away in June 2018, click here to read our tribute to his life and legacy.

In its thirtieth anniversary year, 1993, the organization once again changed its name to Catholic Network of Volunteer Service, a name that remained in place until 2010, when the current organizational name, Catholic Volunteer Network, was adopted. In 1998, Catholic Volunteer Network was awarded a federal grant to administer AmeriCorps Education Awards for volunteers in its member programs. By 2000, membership in Catholic Volunteer Network was comprised of 200 lay volunteer programs, of which about 80% were Catholic and the remainder from various other Christian traditions.

By 2003, Catholic Volunteer Network recorded more than 10,000 volunteers in its annual membership survey. That same year, Catholic Volunteer Network celebrated its fortieth anniversary and moved its national office to Takoma Park, Maryland, where it remains at present.

In November 2013, Catholic Volunteer Network commemorated its fiftieth anniversary at the Annual Conference held in Washington, D.C. A special component of the conference was a day long symposium on the impact of faith-based service on CVN alumni, to coincide with the release of a research study conducted by CARA entitled "Volunteer Introspective." Partners, supporters, program staff, and longtime friends gathered in Washington, D.C. for this celebration. Also at this conference, CVN's annual survey report recorded over 20,000 volunteers serving annually.