Congregation-based Respite Care Teams of volunteers offer in-home services to frail, older, isolated adults and their families or informal caregivers.

Services include an array of non-medical services including: rest and relief for caregivers, friendly visits and telephone reassurance, transportation for errands and outings, assistance with mail correspondence, sorting, organizing, and bill paying.

Training and ongoing support for team members are provided through a unique collaboration of Catholic Charities and Oakwood Lutheran Senior Ministries. All team members are screened through background checks, and thoroughly trained in topics and techniques such as: confidentiality, limits of care, handling an emergency, active listening skills, safe transfer techniques, infection control and the principles of the team process. The team members abide by the ethics of respectful and compassionate care, confidentiality, and services offered without discrimination.

Respite Care Team Ministry Benefits

To Those Being Served:

Enhances capacity to maintain independence and lifestyle.

Offers rest and relief for caregivers.

Provides confidential assistance from members of your congregation.

Increases sense of community.

To the Congregation:

Provides opportunities for members to assist with pastoral care.

Offers a team approach which allows several members to share responsibility.

Enhances the congregation's ability to provide direct assistance to members and neighbors.

Increases sense of community.

To the Team Member:

Provides an opportunity for personal and spiritual growth.

Expands the awareness of congregational and community needs.

Provides a forum for problem solving.

Offers valuable training opportunities.

2016 Service Results

100% of clients increased their socialization.

95% of clients reported feeling more secure.

100% of clients reported an improved quality of life.

100% of households that needed or wanted other community resources and services received appropriate information.


Catholic Charities assists with team formation, training, supervision at monthly team meetings, continuing education, community resources, and consultation. If you are interested in receiving services, or would like more information about developing a team for your congregation, please contact:

Lynda Koivunen, MSSW
Assistant Director Aging Services

Catholic Charities
702 S. High Point Road, Ste. 103
Madison, WI 53719
P: (608) 826-8003
F: (608) 826-8027