The Chaldean people of today are descendants of the ancient Babylonian civilization. These Ancient Babylonians were the first civilization to: invent the wheel; discover how to make glass; discover astronomy; use a writing system; invent the yearly calendar, composed of 360 days and 12 months; and use weights and measures, which were standardized in Babylon around 2,500 B.C. Chaldeans speak a dialect of Aramaic, the oldest continuously spoken language in the world.
Like many ethnic groups, Chaldeans began immigrating to the Metropolitan Detroit area in the 1910s and 1920s in search of better economic, religious and political freedom and opportunities. Metro Detroit has the world’s largest population outside of Iraq, with an estimated 150,000 people. An estimated 200,000 more Chaldeans reside throughout the United States, particularly in Arizona, California, Illinois and other states. The population enjoys steady growth thanks to a constant influx of Christian refugees who have fled Iraq in the face of religious persecution.
The CHALDEAN AMERICAN LADIES of CHARITY was formed in 1961, when 20 women sought to support families and individuals in need. The founders’ legacy of helping others and restoring families provided the foundation of CALC’s mission today: to deliver innovative care, support and education to the poor, homeless and hungry while building their skills to succeed and assimilate into this country.
CALC has grown from an all volunteer agency into a large organization providing a vast array of services and programs through a qualified staff, board, members and volunteers. In 2016, the Board adopted the expanded name of UNITED COMMUNITY FAMILY SERVICES to better deliver the message of an organization supporting the community and families in the tri-county area. UCFS moved into its own facility in 2014 and worked to renovate the site to provide administrative of offices, training space and a large Basic Needs Center and Food Panty to support the needs of its clients.
UCFS continues to move forward supporting refugee and immigrant families, the poor and homeless as it provides critical services to ensure self-sufficiency, healthy life styles and continued growth of the vulnerable and underserved.
United Community Family Services (UCFS) / Chaldean American Ladies of Charity (CALC) has a very bright future. The organization continues to grow providing more services to our community and families, and increasing community support of our mission and efforts. For over 59 years, UCFS/CALC has been a recognized leader in the community for providing quality service – a testament to its reputation and work in the community.