Unity Award

Every year, in honor of what is now our Unity Event, we honor an individual or organization who has exemplified the spirit of bringing people together and making the Gospel present - as St. Josaphat gave his life in this effort - with the St. Josaphat Unity Award. The Award, which includes a $10,000 cash prize, is presented at the Unity Event Kickoff Mass.

Guidelines for Nomination
The guidelines for nominations for the Unity Award are that the individual or organization is within the Chicagoland area, is either a Catholic or Catholic-related undertaking, and usually serving part of the under-served members of the community. We invite you to submit your recommendations to the Unity Award Committee.


Congratulations to our 2021 Unity Award Recipient:


We are pleased to announce that the recipient of this year’s Unity Award is the Little Heroes League.
Inspired by the journey of their granddaughter Livi, Kim and Will Ulaszek founded Little Heroes League to enable infants born with multiple health challenges to thrive and live their best lives. Undergoing serious medical treatment in the first year of life is difficult enough for critically ill babies and their parents. Learning to navigate complex insurance systems, then arranging surgeries, doctor visits, therapies and more can be overwhelming.
The Little Heroes League provides early-life coordinated care for babies born with medically complex special needs. Dedicated nurses and social workers serve as the point person to organize care for each child and to help their families. Acting as an advocate for each baby, they coordinate multiple pediatric specialists and procedures and anticipate what each child needs. They are also adept at navigating the health care system, which can be a daunting task for parents of children with complex health needs. They are the central contact and source of comfort for these families, whom they will also support by identifying social service and health care agencies closer to home, and conducting home visits. The end result is the safest and most effective treatment for these children, maximizing their time at home.
The early months in life are when pain reduction can hold tremendous advantages for a baby’s rapidly growing brain, and when proper interventions such as restoring hearing or vision can impact social, emotional and language development that lasts for a lifetime. Little Heroes League is committed to capturing these opportunities by providing highly coordinated care for these babies.
You can read more about this worthwhile charity at https://www.littleheroesleague.org/ Please join us in celebrating the Little Heroes League!
God Bless,
Fr. Francis

Past Unity Award Recipients include:

2021: Little Heroes League
2019: Kolbe House Jail Ministry
2018: Amate House

2017: Franciscans of the Eucharist Community at Our Lady of the Angels Mission

2016: Catholic Office for the Deaf

2015: Harmony, Hope and Healing

2014: Hope Program of St. Pius V Parish

2013: Lincoln Park Community Shelter

2012: Lakeview Pantry

2011: San Jose Obrero Mission

2010: The St. Vincent DePaul Center

2009: Mrs. Patricia Smuck for Her Ecumenical Work

2008: Maria Elena Jonas, Immigration Aid Center

2007: Matthew Lynch and the Chicago Jesuit Academy ($7,500)

2006: Little Sisters of the Poor ($5,000)

2005: Deacon Tom and Rita Lambert (Award only)

2004: Fr. Bruce Wellem (Award only)

2003: The Courage Program and Maureen Shields (Award only)