Changing Lives… Building Communities

Leonard's Story

“The simple act of caring is heroic.”

“The simple act of caring is heroic.” This saying rang true in the spring of 2017 when Leonard Palumbo, a member of the Catholic Charities Bayside Senior Center, collapsed in his apartment in Whitestone, Queens. Noticing his absence from the center, members were alarmed and rushed to his apartment. They found him unresponsive.  Leo was diagnosed with several life-threatening infections. He was gravely ill for a month, and as he recovered, the Center members took care of his apartment and made sure his bills were paid—the members stood by his side during his entire recovery. Leo fully recuperated and returned to the Catholic Charities Bayside Senior Center in late that summer ready to give back to the community. He called his hospitalization a “wakeup call” that made him realize the importance of helping “others and to making people smile.” Today, Leo plays a pivotal role at the center greeting all seniors and assisting in organizing their schedules.  

Each day, thousands of New Yorkers must decide between paying rent and putting food on the table. For 120 years, Catholic Charities Brooklyn and Queens has been providing solutions for New Yorkers in urgent need. Every day, Catholic Charities feeds the hungry through food pantry networks; serves the lonely and elderly with volunteer services and senior centers; and provides more than four thousand units of affordable housing for low-income seniors, families, and veterans with a deep commitment to alleviating poverty, Catholic Charities is changing lives and building communities through our 160 programs and  services. But we can’t do it alone. 

It takes all of us working together. With your support, Catholic Charities Brooklyn and Queens will be able to help for the next 120 years.

To help your neighbors in need, Be the Solution: volunteer, donate or connect with Catholic Charities Brooklyn and Queens.