On September 10, 2014, Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Raleigh announced the appointment of Ms. Consuelo Kwee to a newly established position, Director of Immigration and Disaster Services. In this position, Ms. Kwee will be responsible for Catholic Charities services in three areas: legal immigration services, assistance to child immigrants seeking to be reunited with family members, and disaster preparation and recovery services.
The new position was established to address clear needs in our community. While Catholic Charities has always been able to provide immigration and disaster services, “This indicates our intention to respond with more resources and capacity to meet these growing needs,” according to Gary Skinner, Executive Director of Catholic Charities.
Ms. Kwee has, for the past 18 years, been Director of Centro para Familias Hispanas (Catholic Charities Hispanic Family / Community Center in Raleigh) and helped to grow and expand the Center from a half-time staff person working out of a filing closet to what it is today. This past fiscal year the Center provided services impacting 3,500 families – nearly 17,000 people.
Mr. Skinner, stated about Ms. Kwee, “I am very excited for Consuelo and Catholic Charities as she assumes this new role. Consuelo is uniquely qualified to take on this role as she was formerly a Certified Bureau of Immigration Affairs representative and did immigration services work as a third of her job for several years. She began with Catholic Charities in 1996 after Hurricane Fran to coordinate our disaster relief services to the Hispanic community. She was also intimately involved in our disaster relief services after the Raleigh tornadoes of 2011.
“She has the experience in the community to foster and establish the relationships needed to effectively provide these services. In her work at the Center, Consuelo has built lasting partnerships with Migrations and Refugee Services of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, Wake County SmartStart, the Mexican Consulate, American Red Cross, Wake County Public Schools, and many more organizations.”
Ms. Kwee said, “I want to thank Bishop Burbidge and Gary for the opportunity and confidence they have shown in me by offering me this position. I also greatly appreciate the support of the staff at Centro para Familias Hispanas and regional director Rick Miller-Haraway for his encouragement in the new path I will take.”
“I am very pleased that Catholic Charities is able to devote additional resources in support of these two key initiatives of immigration assistance and disaster services, both of which are designed to help those in most need,” said Bishop Burbidge. “Both of these initiatives are very much in keeping with Catholic Charities’ mission of performing the Corporal Works of Mercy. I assure Consuelo of my prayerful support as she begins her new responsibilities.”