Casa de Misericordia

About Casa de Misericordia

Casa de Misericordia is a shelter for victims of domestic violence and offers survivors a chance to reclaim their lives through comprehensive, holistic services and consistent long-term support. This shelter provides secure, temporary residential services to victims of domestic violence. Survivors can be oriented, educated on domestic violence, and offered emotional support. Casa de Misericordia also links victims to appropriate agencies based on their needs and goals.

In 1997, Sr. Rosemary Welsh and staff of healthcare providers from Mercy Clinic recognized an alarming number of women in violent situations. This called for urgent action and coincided with a request from the community to open a domestic violence shelter.

In January 1998, the opportunity was made possible by awarding Catherine's grant from the Sisters of Mercy. Through this grant, additional in-kind donations, and many individuals and families, Casa de Misericordia opened its doors on July 7, 1998.

The mission and vision of Casa de Misericordia are to provide survivors of domestic violence, especially those who are pregnant and with children, a sheltered environment where they can access the very best services in education, legal advocacy, counseling, medical referrals, and spiritual guidance; to hold the batterers accountable for their actions; and to provide the community with a vital and effective mechanism for changing the way it perceives and responds to the needs of victims of domestic violence and their families.

If you think you are a victim of domestic violence and want information, call 956-712-9591 or toll-free at 1-877-782-2722.

Casa staff will assist you with a safety plan and answer questions regarding your situation. All information obtained is confidential. Appropriate referrals will be made to community agencies depending on your needs or the needs of other victims.

Your safety is of utmost importance. Sometimes, the abuse has escalated to the point where you may have to leave your home. Plan, think of relatives, friends, etc., who can assist you. If it is in your best interest to leave your home, do not forget legal documents, change of clothes, money, medication, children's diapers, formula, and your favorite toy.

Casa de Misericordia provides services to victims of domestic violence without regard to race, national origin, age, physical handicap, religion, or gender identity.

The Lamar Bruni Vergara Education Center, an extension of Casa de Misericordia, is a multi-purpose facility providing victims of domestic abuse and the general Laredo community with education, activities, and opportunities for support and transition to self-sufficiency.

The Lamar Bruni Vergara Education Center helps set women and their families free by teaching them life skills that empower them to seek new employment opportunities. The Center provides counseling, education, and moral support to women who need these services due to a life in an abusive situation or other life challenges that have prevented them from traditionally seeking education.

The coursework includes various levels of computer skills, sewing, cosmetology, culinary arts, and English.

Contact Lamar Bruni Vergara Education Center

For more information about the center or to inquire about events, please contact email Sr. Rosemary Welsh, RSM, RN, or call 956-712-9591.

Casa is governed by a 30-member board drawn from Laredo, including former Casa residents, educators, nurses, lawyers, and law enforcement officials.

In addition, a 15-member advisory board comprised of former Casa residents advises the Education Center administrators about what classes to offer and what skills are needed by women who have been victims of domestic abuse.

The Education Center is often loaned to community agencies with like-minded missions to develop a collaborative spirit among local social service groups.