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COVID-19 Services/Response:

Our thanks to the remarkable staff, partners, donors, and volunteers who are helping us meet the needs of those least able to navigate these unprecedented circumstances. We are in your debt.

Service Update:

  • For urgent needs, please call 312-655-7700
  • Meals to go are available at Congregate Meal sites and Senior Centers. Catholic Charities has suspended all senior group activities and adult day care amidst the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Our home care services continue, and are following a more sophisticated protocol as there are seniors who have no one to drop off groceries and provide basic hygiene assistance.
  • Food pantries and evening meal programs will continue to provide food depending on supplies and safe distribution protocols. Please check under Our Services/Emergency Services for locations and phone numbers.
  • Counseling, case management, and other services that can be provided remotely are being delivered accordingly. Please call your case worker or program contact if you need assistance.

How You Can Help:
Due to COVID-19 exposure risks, we are unable to take donations of clothing or food from individuals or groups at this time.  

  • Please consider a contribution. The need for financial assistance and program support for those who were only just making ends meet will grow significantly with lost wages and other impact from the pandemic.
  • Masks, hand sanitizer, paper towels, or bleach wipes are needed and can be dropped at any Catholic Charities location. 
  • When shopping on Amazon, please use Amazon Smile and choose Catholic Charities so we might benefit from your purchase. 
  • Volunteers needed to pack food at pantries.  If you are not in a high risk category and are willing to help, please email Andrew McKernin at Protective gear provided. Health protocols enforced. 
  • Thank the human service workers, first responders, and grocery/gas station/coffee vendors in your life and when you see them in action.

For more information on COVID19, visit the CDC website.

About Us

Mission Statement

The mission of Catholic Charities Legal Assistance (known as “CCLA”) is to provide access to compassionate and competent legal assistance to the economically disadvantaged in the Chicago area without regard to religious affiliation.

Mission Fulfillment

CCLA endeavors to fulfill its mission by providing various legal services to clients who live on a low income and cannot afford an attorney. As a part of Catholic Charities, CCLA is able to refer clients for assistance to other Catholic Charities social services programs and to provide legal assistance to existing clients of Catholic Charities.



Hilda Bahena, Catholic Charities Legal Assistance Department Director (LADD).   As the Department Director, Hilda is responsible for the day to day operations of the department, comprised of the Legal Services Program and the Volunteer and Pro Bono Program. The LADD ensures the delivery of legal advice, direct representation and referral services to the department’s clients on a wide range of legal issues.  In addition, Hilda is responsible for strategic planning, including providing leadership and direction in establishing both short and long term goals that are consistent with those of the legal aid community and Catholic Charities.   

Hilda joined CCLA after first working as a legal aid attorney in the states of California and Illinois for more than twelve years.  Hilda’s public interest experience spans a wide range of subject areas, including landlord/tenant, consumer, and immigration law.  She has developed a specific expertise in family law and legal issues related to domestic violence survivors and immigrant communities.  In addition, throughout her career, Hilda has developed trainings, forged collaboration among service providers, conducted extensive community outreach, and created programs to expand services.  Hilda is bilingual in Spanish.

Hilda received her Bachelors of Science from the University of Illinois College of Liberal Arts & Sciences and her Juris Doctorate from the University of Illinois College of Law. 

Legal Assistance:

Ways to Change Lives


Phone: (312) 655-7525
721 N. LaSalle, Chicago, IL 60654