The St. Joseph Worker Program (SJW), sponsored by the Congregation of St. Joseph, has announced the first class of St. Joseph Workers for their new year-long volunteer program in New Orleans, Louisiana. Four young women, who have a blog, joined recently-named program director Jackie Schmitz, C.S.J. on July 31, 2009. Their volunteer year will end June 30, 2010.
SJW is a year-long volunteer program for single women between 21 and 35 who are committed to social change. This program is based on the St. Joseph Worker program the Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet began seven years ago in St. Paul, Minnesota that has since grown to two houses in the Twin Cities as well as an alumni house.
The program trains and supports women to be agents of change as they provide direct services to the communities they serve. The core of the program includes development in leadership, community, justice, and spirituality, which participants work toward through training programs, retreat days, living together in community, ministry experiences, and interaction among themselves, the sisters and associates of the Congregation, and others they meet.