This page is also available in: French, Spanish

An art project for the homeless in Germany. Credits: Klemens Bögner, Caritas Germany

An art project for the homeless in Germany. Credits: Klemens Bögner, Caritas Germany

European Caritas members set up various projects to help the poor. Some provided specific rehabilitation initiatives for particular sectors of the population such as street children, the mentally ill or homeless women. Others offered advice, a meeting place or a hot meal to anybody in need.

Caritas not only provided food, shelter and basic necessities to the most vulnerable. It also sought to empower people, value their skills and encourage them to take control of their lives. The common focus is dignity, putting people at the centre. Homeless people at Caritas in Stuttgart, Germany, transformed bottles into art, expressing their hidden talents and challenging the prejudices of mainstream society.

In Voralberg, Austria, Caritas gives teenagers who dropped out of the regular school system a second chance. Supported by professional instructors, the teenagers produce wood products and renovate furniture until they can be guided towards vocational training or employment elsewhere.