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The Catholic Campaign for Human Development (CCHD) is the U.S. Catholic bishops’ domestic anti-poverty and social justice program. It is designed to help local people organize a response to conditions that cause poverty in their own neighborhoods. In this respect, it is the embodiment of the principle of subsidiarity — allowing local challenges to be solved by local people — complemented by our solidarity in giving to help people to help themselves. It was founded by the National Conference of Catholic Bishops in 1970 to:

  • Empower — CCHD is the nation's largest private funder of projects that empower the poor and seek to eliminate poverty and injustice. CCHD also educates the non-poor about root causes of poverty and Catholic social teaching.
  • Raise Funds — The annual CCHD collection is held in parishes the Sunday before Thanksgiving. These funds are used to make grants for self-help projects. The diocesan office administers small grants while the national CCHD office allocates larger grants. Organizations seeking a local CCHD grant may apply online.

Twenty-five percent of the annual CCHD collection in Arkansas stays in Arkansas to fund small, local projects and 75 percent is sent to the national CCHD office to be used for the national grants.

During its history, CCHD has provided thousands of grants, many in Arkansas, to self-help projects developed by grassroots groups of poor persons. The projects’ successes and the relationships developed have significantly changed the lives of the poor in our country. CCHD is supported solely by private donations. The program owes its success to the Catholic parishioners who contribute to the annual parish appeal.

In 2015, nearly $85,000 was collected through the CCHD collection in the Diocese of Little Rock. The 25 percent that remained in Arkansas was used to award local grants ranging from $500 to $2,000. To learn more, see which groups received local CCHD grants in 2015.