Caritas Malta was founded in 1968 by the Caritas National Council to co-ordinate and develop social assistance and charitable activities. In 1979, the agency underwent a re-alignment of its services and implemented a new system to alleviate poverty and promote social justice through a wide-range of services that includes shelters for the homeless, care and support for the sick and people living with HIV/AIDS, counseling for people with credit issues, rehabilitation services for drug-abusers, programmes to combat social exclusion and social work for those with psychological, social and spiritual problems.
Caritas Malta works with local and international partners to support the poor and marginalized. At the grassroots level, hundreds of community outreach volunteers provide services to families in material need, offer a ‘HelpAge’ service to improve the quality life of the elderly through social clubs and home visits, provide assistance to the disabled and distribute the basic necessities to the homeless, such as food and clothing. In addition, Caritas Malta Self-Help Groups helps families with Huntington’s disease and a rehabilitation programme for alcoholics to assist people and their families with drinking problems.
Caritas Malta is also active in rehabilitation and prevention to combat the drug abuse epidemic plaguing Malta. They founded New Hope, a foundation that offers hope to people facing such problems through professional long-term rehabilitation and prevention education to promote the awareness among young people. Caritas Malta established a Harm Reduction Shelter in Zebbug to assist clients during their detoxification treatment and prepare them for rehabilitation. The Shelter also provides help to homeless people and prison inmates struggling with substance abuse.
In 2000 Caritas Malta set up a foundation to support and counsel victims of loan sharks by listening and offering legal and financial consultation to find solutions to resolve their debt problems and get their lives back on track.
Caritas Malta headquarters in Floriana employs a total of 80 staff and approximately 700 volunteers.
Caritas Malta is a member of the Caritas Internationalis confederation and Caritas Europa, the worldwide Caritas network to promote dignity, justice, solidarity and stewardship, and provides emergency aid wherever needed in the world.
Archbishop Paul Cremona