Creating New Cycles

The Problem – Cycle of Generational Poverty

Most individuals and families served by Catholic Urban Programs have experienced the impacts of poverty in some way throughout their lives. One example of this is multiple generations of the same family having been served by CUP’s Griffin Center after school and summer programming offered at East St. Louis public housing sites. Children, like those we serve at our Holy Angels Shelter, are more likely to become homeless as adults because of their childhood experience of homelessness. People experiencing generational poverty often lack resources, tools, knowledge, and role models for building greater capacity for themselves and their children. Our social service programs work in collaboration to help meet the needs of our community’s most vulnerable while providing them with the necessary resources to “create new cycles.”

Our Vision

To break the cycle of poverty and rekindle hope in those we serve.

Our Mission

Guided by the principles of Catholic social teaching, we advance human dignity, remediate the effects of poverty, and empower people to become self-sufficient through crisis intervention, housing security, and out-of-school time programs.

Our Programs

  • HUB Foods
  • Homeless Prevention
  • Emergency Shelter and
    Housing Support Services
  • Griffin Center After School and
    Summer Programs

Our Activities

  • Case management
  • Future-focused goal setting
  • Mental health support
  • Social-emotional and
    trauma-informed programming for youth
  • Life-skills empowerment
    workshops and classes
  • Basic needs services

Intended Changes

  • Grow our clients’ knowledge and skills to become self-sufficient
  • Reduce barriers that keep our clients in the cycle of poverty
  • Improve the structures and address the root causes of poverty
  • Foster positive relationships that are accountable
  • Transform the way we think about the work at hand, from meeting basic needs to creating transformative cultures of care