Catholic Charities has been serving Summit County for nearly 85 years.
Catholic Charities Summit County first began as a Catholic Youth Organization (CYO) nearly 85 years ago. A group of leaders at the Catholic Service League grew concerned for area youth during the Depression, and founded Akron CYO in 1936.
The program operated as a division of the Catholic Service League until 1967, when it was became a separate corporation. In 2005, CYO was renamed CYO and Community Services to better reflect the array of services offered to all populations, including the young, disabled, elderly and poor, from all faiths and ethnicities. In 2011, CYO and Community Services was renamed Catholic Charities Community Services of Summit County, and is known today as Catholic Charities Summit County.
For a more detailed history of Catholic Charities Summit County, read the timeline below:
Akron CYO is founded and begins building the program on the twin foundations of athletics and camping. Early CYO activities include leagues for baseball, softball, football, basketball and bowling; along with Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, marble tournaments, track meets, model airplane competitions, pistol and rifle shooting teams, and leadership training courses. The staff works with the Knights of Columbus to provide camping opportunities for needy young boys.
Camp Christopher relocates to its present location on Hametown Road in Bath, Ohio, on land purchased by Catholic Charities., The camp was previously operated by the Knights of Columbus since 1924, and later turned over to the Catholic Service League.
In conjunction with the Summit County Council for the Retarded, CYO organizes a day camp at Camp Christopher for people with mental disabilities.
CYO becomes an autonomous organization, making CYO and the Catholic Service League separate organizations.
CYO Sponsors its first Search for Christian Maturity retreat (Youth Ministry).
With a funding award by the Area Office on Aging, CYO initiates the first adult day care program (Adult Day Services) in the Akron area.
CYO of Summit County assumes responsibility for CYO programming in Medina, Wayne and Ashland Counties.
Summer Recreation Program for Physically Disabled Youth (SumFun) begins in conjunction with Summit County United Way, Catholic Charities and the City of Akron Recreation Department.
Recreational Respite starts to provide weekend programs for persons with disabilities and respite for their caregivers
In June, CYO changes its name to CYO & Community Services to better reflect the system of services offered.
CYO & Community Services relocates its offices to the former St. Peter’s School building, breathing new life into the facility and creating a new presence in the community.
CYO adds Neighborhood Services (Youth Enrichment) to its list of community services. The afterschool program begins by offering tutoring and recreation for 4th and 5th graders.
CYO Adult Day Services on Biruta Street reaches capacity of the facility. A second CYO Adult Day Services opens in Cuyahoga Falls and remains open until February 2003.
CYO begins a pilot mentoring program with Summit County Juvenile Court.
CYO accepts full responsibility for the diocesan Environmental Education program offered at Camp Christopher.
CYO begins the Home Service Project to serve disabled older adults in their homes through yard work and light home maintenance and remains operational until 2009.
Catholic Social Services on North Main Street merges with CYO and Community Services.
CYO and Community Services changes its name to Catholic Charities Community Services of Summit County to become more fully integrated with the diocese. Athletics and Youth Ministry move under Cleveland CYO.
Catholic Charities Summit County continues to operate Adult Day Services, Camp Christopher, Summit-based Disability Services programs (including Camp Christopher's SumFun, Community Respite, and Discovery Camp), and Emergency Assistance Services (including Community Hot Meals and Emergency Financial Assistance).
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