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2022 Mission in Action Honoree:
Mission in Action Award Honoree Donnet Lawrence, Basilica Place Senior Community, Service Coordinator
Each year, Catholic Charities awards staff who have consistently embodied our Mission: Inspired by the Gospel mandates to love, serve and teach, Catholic Charities provides care and services to improve the lives of Marylanders in need.
Donnet strives for excellence—doing her best work always for the residents of Basilica Place. Without her commitment, compassion, and ability to act with dignity, it would be nearly impossible for our residents to access the benefits and resources that help them remain independent.
Years with Catholic Charities: 29
Read what her colleagues have written about her:
Donnet started her career with Catholic Charities in November of 1993 with Family Services.
In 2001, Donnet switched gears and joined the Senior Communities team as Service Coordinator of Basilica Place on Franklin Street, our largest and oldest apartment community where she continues to be an advocate and resource to our 200 residents who happen to be some of Baltimore’s most vulnerable older adults. Donnet strives for excellence – doing her best work always for the residents at Basilica Place.
The average age of the residents at Basilica Place is 73 with 21 residents over the age of 85. The average income is $14,000. Without Donnet’s commitment, compassion, and ability to act with dignity, it would be nearly impossible for our residents to navigate through the many avenues it takes to obtain the resources needed to remain independent and the benefits that they are entitled to.
Donnet encounters resident issues related to poverty, addiction, behavioral and mental health, and family dynamics (to name a few) in her daily work but always meets residents where they are to assist with what is needed. Donnet’s ability to create and maintain partnerships is integral in her work at Basilica Place.
Her relationships with multiple health care providers and pharmacies, Maryland Food Bank, MD Dept on Aging, Meals on Wheels, MVLS, and Baltimore Crisis Response among others, contribute to the success of Donnet and the residents. She oversees the Eating Together Program, Senior Companion Program, Senior Aide Program, Virtual Supermarket Program, The CCSC Walmart Shuttle Program, and the University of MD Senior Fitness Program. This past year has been an extremely difficult one for all employees at Basilica Place. They have been short-staffed resulting in employees wearing multiple hats and have had 35 move-outs with 54% of them a result of death.
During this trying time for all and among her own grief, Donnet’s passion and devotion to supporting others shine through. Each day she demonstrates our mission, commitments, and values to all she encounters at Basilica Place and the community.