Archive for June, 2012

Monsignor Kevin Sullivan speaks about Catholic Charities’ Obligation to the Poor

Friday, June 29th, 2012

On Friday, June 29, Monsignor Kevin Sullivan appeared on the weekly PBS program, “Need to Know.” The program focused on the theme of “Solving Poverty in America.”

In the American Voices segment of the program, which  Msgr. Sullivan reflects on the roots and the meaning of the Catholic Church’s obligation to serve the poor in our community — and how this is put into practice at Catholic Charities.

Watch American Voices: Monsignor Kevin Sullivan on PBS. See more from Need To Know.

“Our primary obligation as Catholic Charities is to see in the person in need the image and likeness of God,” said Msgr. Sullivan. “We help people not because they’re Catholic, but because it’s part of our faith. Jesus wasn’t neutral on people. He had a preference for those who were poor, those who were downtrodden, those who were outcast, those who were on the margins. And if I call myself a disciple of Jesus Christ, then I best follow that example.”

Watch Msgr. Sullivan’s entire segment above, and leave your thoughts in the comments.

Tune in to PBS “Need to Know” on Friday, June 29 at 8:30 pm to see Msgr. Kevin Sullivan’s American Voices segment and other perspectives on poverty in America.

 

New York Area Cooling Centers

Thursday, June 21st, 2012

Stay safe in the sweltering heat. Cooling centers are now open throughout the New York area.

New York City:
For a list of NYC cooling centers, visit gis.nyc.gov/oem/cc/index.htm

Dutchess County:

There are four cooling stations at Dutchess County Community Action Partnerships

54 Main St. in Beacon

44-45 E Market St. in Red Hook

84 Cannon St. in Poughkeepsie

3414 Route 22 in Dover Plains.

Orange County:

Cooling center updates will be made available on the Orange County Emergency Services Facebook page.

City of Middletown

The Cooling Center located at the Middletown Senior Center, 62-70 Main St., Middletown. The Center is scheduled to remain open through Friday, June 22 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Bottled water will be provided. For more information, contact Middletown City Hall at 346-4100.

City of Newburgh

The City of Newburgh’s Cooling Center is located at the Activity Center, 401 Washington St., Newburgh. The center will be open 8:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. through Thursday, June 21. For more information, call 565-4843.

Washingtonville

Grace Community Baptist Church located at 2839 Route 94, Washingtonville, is open as a Cooling Center through Thursday, June 21, until 6 p.m. Information is available by calling the church office at 496-4372.

At this time, all other municipalities are recommending that their residents access public buildings, including libraries, senior centers, activity centers, and town halls to seek relief from the heat. (List attached.)

Rockland County:
Central Nyack
Central Nyack Community Center
58 Waldron Avenue, Central Nyack
358-2500

Congers
Congers Community Center
6 Gilchrest Rd., Congers
268-9700

Nanuet:
Pascack Community Center
87 New Clarkstown Road, Nanuet
371-6650

New City
Street Community Center
31 Zukor Rd., New City
634-3039

Town of Haverstraw
Town Hall, Rosman Rd. Meeting Room (8:30 a.m.-5:00 p.m. Tues.-Fri.)
*Limited parking due to construction*
Contact: Mike Gamboli 429-2200

Town of Orangetown
Town Hall (9:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m. Tues.-Fri.)
Contact: Annemarie in Supervisor’s Office or Police Dispatch after hours- 359-5100

Town of Ramapo
Town Hall (9:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m. Tues.-Fri.) 357-5100
St. Lawrence Center (9:00 a.m.- 10:00 p.m. Tues.-Fri.)
All Ramapo Town Pools- Free

Town of Stony Point
Police Department- Route 210 Emergency response room (24 hours, 7 days a week)
Rho Building @ Patriot Hills Complex on Clubhouse Lane (6:30 a.m.- 9 p.m.)
Contact: Supervisor’s Office 786-2716, Ext. 111

Village of Suffern
Village Hall (9:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m. Tues.-Fri.)
Contact: Mayor LaCorte 357-2600
Village of Nyack
Village Hall (9:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m. Tues.-Fri.)
Contact: Mayor Kavesh 358-0229

Village of Spring Valley
Kurtz Civic Center (9:00 a.m.-7:00 p.m. Tues.-Fri.)
Contact: Mayor Jasmin 352-1100

Village of Haverstraw
Village Community Center, 50 W. Broad St. (9:00 a.m.-7:00 p.m. Tues.-Fri.)
Contact: Mayor Kohut 429-0300

Village of Piermont
Village Hall/ Police Station- (Village Hall 8 a.m.- 4 p.m., Police 24 hours, 7 days a week)
Contact: Sylvia Carbonell 359-1258 Ext. 301

Village of West Haverstraw
Village Hall 130 Samsondale Ave. (9 a.m.-9 p.m.)Contact: Mayor Ramundo 947-2800

Village of South Nyack
Village Hall 282 South Broadway (9 a.m.-5p.m.)Contact: Sara Seiler 358-0287

Westchester, NY:

When Westchester County Department of Health issues a Heat Advisory, many Senior Centers will serve as a Cooling Center for seniors residing in Westchester. Please call sites to confirm hours of operation

Yonkers, N.Y.:
The centers below provide meals to older adults as well as transportation. Please call the Yonkers Office for the Aging at (914) 377-6822.

St. John’s Park Care Pavilion
Old Yonkers General Hospital
2 Park Avenue
Monday – Friday
8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

Bronx River Road Community Center/ Scotti Center
680 Bronx River Road
Monday – Friday
10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.

Congregation Sons of Israel
155 Elliot Avenue
Monday – Friday
10:00 a.m. – 1:30 p.m.

Nepperhan Community Center
342 Warburton Avenue
Tuesday and Thursday
10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.

Newark, N.J.:
Bethany Senior Center
275 W. Market Street
Newark, New Jersey 07103
Monday  Friday 8:30am to 4:30pm
(973) 733-5739

Ironbound Senior Center
138 Clifford Street
Newark, New Jersey 07105
Monday  Friday 8:30am to 4:30pm
(973) 424-4101

Stephen Crane Elderly Complex (N)
900 Franklin Avenue
Newark, New Jersey 07107
Monday  Friday 8:00am  5:00pm
(973) 430-2662

South Ward Senior Center (M/N)
731 Clinton Avenue
Newark, New Jersey 07108
Monday  Friday 8:00am to 4:00pm
(973) 424-4102

Unified Vailsburg Services Org. (N)
462 Sanford Avenue
Newark, New Jersey 07106
Monday  Friday 9:00am to 2:00pm
(973) 351-2159

Newark Department of Child and Family Well-Being
110 William Street
Room LL101
Newark, NJ 07102
Monday  Friday 8:30am to 4:30pm
(973) 733-7592

 

Announcing New Services for the International Community in New York

Wednesday, June 20th, 2012

When the New York Times reported that a nonprofit that had served New York’s immigrant and refugee community for 50 years would have to close its doors, Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of New York stepped in to ensure that the critical services provided by the organization could still continue.

This month, Catholic Charities recreated the services that had been provided by the International Center, previously located in Chelsea, to complement existing Catholic Charities services for immigrants and refugees.

The new services, which range from job readiness and skills training, to English language classes, to educational enrichment programs, are currently being led at the Catholic Charities headquarters by four former International Center employees, now part of the Catholic Charities staff: Mira Erickson, Shawn Mullin, Anna Petelka and Elaine Roberts.

One of the most prized services is the “conversation partners” program, where volunteers are matched with students to serve as English language tutors, and as a source of encouragement to continue learning and pursuing their goals.

According to staff, this program “provides an atmosphere of trust and support that … is often not as easy to create in a classroom setting. As in any successful language learning situation, it is a partnership of equals: while the newcomer works on acquiring the language, the volunteer works on developing strategies of engaging in a subtle process of mobilizing, inspiring, monitoring, and guiding.”

Volunteers are a large part of what have made these services to the international community so successful for the past 50 years. Many who received services have gone on to become volunteers, teaching and mentoring future students.

 

Subscribe to receive news from Catholic Charities to follow new developments within Catholic Charities Immigration and Refugee Services.

Deloitte Volunteers Make a Big IMPACT at Catholic Charities

Wednesday, June 20th, 2012

Deloitte IMPACT Day 2012 volunteers with artwork created for Beacon of Hope House.

On Friday June 8, Deloitte employees volunteered for a variety of Catholic Charities programs and agencies as part of Deloitte 2012 IMPACT Day — an annual organization-wide event where Deloitte employees celebrate the beginning of their new fiscal year by giving back to the community and the nonprofit organizations that are dedicated to service all year long.

At the Catholic Charities Washington Heights Ecumenical Food Pantry, volunteers distributed fresh produce along with new vegetable steamers to individuals from the Washington Heights/Inwood communities. The focus of this project was not only to feed the hungry, but also to provide the necessary tools for food pantry clients to prepare healthy meals for their families.

During a morning address to volunteers, Jeanne McGettigan, Catholic Charities Community Services Director of Emergency Food Services, explained the importance of healthy eating for families living in a neighborhood with a proliferation of  cheap, deep-fried food and a scarcity of fresh produce markets.

“While we work in providing food to the community, we consider ourselves public health workers,” McGettigan said.

McGettigan discussed how statistics consistently reveal that harmful health issues stemming from deficient nutrition plague low-income areas, making this project particularly important to the community.

Deloitte volunteers spent the morning preparing vegetables and learning how  many New Yorkers have come to depend on the pantry in these difficult economic times. As volunteers quickly washed and chopped broccoli, carrots, red peppers and fresh greens, a line of clients formed outside the pantry.

By lunch time, the room was transformed into a health-themed showroom. On one side of the room, bilingual volunteers individually showed clients how to use their new steamers. On the other side, a row of freshly steamed vegetables awaited clients as volunteers served them plates with various homemade dipping sauces to sample.

“The idea of giving back is always good, but our work is especially meaningful today, since we are helping people prepare healthy food and contributing to good nutrition,” said Deloitte volunteer Yohan Bobcombe.

In addition to volunteering at the Washington Heights Ecumenical Food Pantry, Deloitte volunteers also gave back at the following locations:

At Grace Institute, a Catholic Charities affiliated agency that provides tuition-free, practical job training for underserved New York area women, Deloitte IMPACT Day volunteers helped students prepare for upcoming job interviews by giving mock job interviews and assisting students with interviewing skills. View pictures of Deloitte IMPACT Day volunteers working with Grace Institute students.

At the Lt. Joseph P. Kennedy Center, Catholic Charities’ thriving community center located in the heart of Harlem, volunteers helped the center prepare for an upcoming open house by refreshing the building and helping it look clean and new.  The IMPACT Day team painted hallways and the exterior of the building, and also painted the outside of the “white building”, which used to serve as a coventry for women religious. View pictures of Deloitte IMPACT Day and see how volunteers dramatically refreshed the appearance of our Kennedy Center.

Another Deloitte IMPACT Day team created beautiful artwork to help improve the emotional well being and quality of life for clients of Beacon of Hope House, which operates residences and a day program for the mentally challenged in Staten Island and the Bronx. Volunteers helped paint multiple canvas paintings to be displayed in four Beacon of Hope House locations. View pictures of Deloitte IMPACT Day volunteers and the art they created for Beacon of Hope House.

Facts About World Refugee Day

Wednesday, June 20th, 2012

“No one wants to become a refugee. No one should have to endure this humiliating and arduous ordeal. Yet, millions do. Even one refugee forced to flee, one refugee forced to return to danger is one too many.” – UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on World Refugee Day, when it was first officially marked on June 20, 2001.

  • World Refugee Day, held each year on June 20, was first marked in 2001, commemorating the 50th anniversary of the 1951 Convention relating to the Status of Refugees. The annual event is recognized in more than 100 countries, involving government officials, aid workers, celebrities, civilians and the forcibly displaced. Learn more at the UN Refugee Agency.
  • The theme of World Refugee Day 2012 is Refugees have no choice. You do.” It is part of the United Nations “Dilemmas” campaign, which highlights the difficult decisions refugees must make for survival.
  • There are currently 264,574 refugees and 6,285 asylum seekers in the United States, according to UNHCR. Globally, there are 10.5 million “refugees of concern” at the beginning of 2011.
  • Angelina Jolie, appointed Special Envoy of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees António Guterres, has helped promote World Refugee Day
  • In New York, UNHCR will be commemorating World Refugee Day during an evening event at the UN Secretariat Building in Manhattan. The event will launch a photo and text exhibit on the UNHCR publication, “The State of the World’s Refugees.”Learn about World Refugee Day events taking place worldwide.
  • In Washington, D.C., Khaled Hosseini, Afghan-born author of The Kite Runner and A Thousand Splendid Suns, as well as UNHCR supporter and former refugee, will be involved in several events featuring international artists. Hosseini will introduce a live performance of “No Place Called Home,” written and performed by Kim Schultz. The play tells the story of an American woman who accidentally falls in love with an Iraqi man while interviewing refugees.
  • Looking for more World Refugee Day events throughout the country? Explore the full list of official World Refugee Day 2012 events in the United States.
  • Looking for World Refugee Day events elsewhere in New York State? There are events taking place today in Utica, Syracuse, and Albany.

Top content on refugee services at Catholic Charities:

  • JustLove on SiriusXM: On a special World Refugee Day broadcast, Monsignor Kevin Sullivan speaks with guests who work and volunteer in the field of refugee resettlement and employment.
  • A New, Safer Life. “Manaf Hashim did not know who was threatening to kill him in the note left on the front door of his Baghdad home or in a message left on his cellphone two days later. He suspected he was being targeted because his fiancée, Farah, was Sunni, and he was Shia. He knew only that it was best to heed such warnings…”
  • Burmese Couple Build Life in the Bronx. “Bae Reh and his wife, Moo Pro, were raised on a five-mile-long patch of land they were not permitted to leave, except to gather leaves to fortify the bamboo huts in which they slept. They are refugees from Myanmar whose parents fled to a camp in Thailand to escape a government that drafted citizens at random and forced them to commit atrocities against their own ethnic tribes.
  • On the Road with the Neediest Cases: On the Anniversary of Haiti’s Earthquake. “Jovins told me he feels lucky despite losing half his leg.  The massive earthquake that struck Haiti just over a year ago tore a beam from his home, pinned him down and crushed his leg...”
  • Saving a Refuge, With Help from Our Volunteers. Volunteers help restore St. Rita’s Center for Immigrant and Refugee Services.
  • Learn more about what Catholic Charities does to help refugees and immigrants in New York.

One Click Can Feed the Hungry: Vote for the “Community Garden of Love”

Monday, June 18th, 2012

You can help feed the hungry in less than 5 seconds (we timed it) — and for free. Just vote for the “Community Garden of Love” every day in the Gardens for Good grant contest on Facebook, and Catholic Charities could win $15,000 to help feed the hungry through an innovative program dedicated to improving the health and nutrition of the New York community.

Community Garden of Love“, operated by Catholic Charities Community Services of Rockland (CCCSR), is making it possible for the local community to take advantage of fresh, healthy produce. Thanks to the garden, individuals who use the CCCSR food pantry are now able to feed their families with more than just canned goods and non-perishables — they are able to receive fresh greens, fruits and vegetables for free, ensuring that their family’s nutritional needs are met, and that their children are healthy.

“While we work in providing food to the community, we consider ourselves public health workers,” said Jeanne McGettigan, Catholic Charities Community Services  Director of Emergency Food Services.

Vote for the Garden of Love today — with just one click, you can give our community the healthy food we all deserve.

Volunteer Spotlight: Eileen and Peter Grunert

Thursday, June 14th, 2012

Sister and brother Eileen and Peter Grunert are making a difference in New York City. Through the Catholic Charities Junior Board they created a new volunteer project for members and friends at the Catholic Charities Community Services Thrift Store, located in the South Bronx. Nearly every month, Eileen and Peter, along with Junior Board members and friends volunteer to sort, tag, price, and organize donations to be sold at the Thrift Store. The group is welcome with open arms and smiles, so appreciative of their assistance.

Eileen is a graduate of the College of the  Holy Cross and currently works for PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP.  Her roots in volunteerism go back to church activities, candy-striper at a local hospital in high school, and then as a tutor in college. She eventually moved to NYC and became involved in the Catholic Charities Junior Board when it was first formed in 2008. Eileen was instrumental in the creation of the Midnight Run volunteer opportunity and eventually stepped down to start another Junior Board project….volunteering at the Thrift Store. Eileen credits her parents and her Jesuit education for inspiring her volunteerism. Between balancing work and volunteer activities, Eileen spends her “spare” time with family and friends, reads, and watches Big Bang Theory.

When asked – Why did you choose Catholic Charities as a means to volunteer? – Eileen said, “This organization is very special in that it not only promotes volunteerism, but also weaves in many other important aspects such as faith and meeting other young Catholics in the city.  I’ve made new friends and had wonderful experiences here to date.”

Peter Grunert joined the Junior Board after settling into life in NYC. He is a graduate of Loyola University, Maryland and employed by Citigroup. Similar to Eileen, Peter began volunteering in high school — participating in a service trip to the Dominican Republic — and furthered his commitment to service in college. His Jesuit education was a big impact in Peter’s life and continues to motivate him to give back to the community. Since first introduced to the Junior Board by sister Eileen, Peter was off to a running start, becoming active in multiple committees and activities. After visiting the Thrift Store, he knew that was where he could make the biggest impact.  In addition to volunteering with Catholic Charities, Peter is involved with other groups including Year Up New York and Back on my Feet. To keep things light, Peter enjoys running.

Peter hopes to continue to volunteer throughout your life…”My aim is to always contribute to the broader goals of justice and service, be it volunteering my time, fundraising, offering my support, or in some other meaningful way.”

To learn more and join Eileen and Peter in supporting the Thrift Store, email Staci Bruce, Director of Volunteer Services, at ccvolunteer@archny.org.

“New York City is My Track”: Meet Cynthia, 2012 ING NYC Marathon Runner for Team Catholic Charities NY

Thursday, June 14th, 2012

Cynthia Martinez after finishing the NYC Half Marathon. She will run the 2012 ING NYC Marathon for Team Catholic Charities New York. Support her on Crowdrise. http://www.crowdrise.com/catholiccharitiesnycmarathon/fundraiser/cynthiamartinez1

 

By Cynthia Martinez
Associate Director of Youth Ministry

Three years ago, I challenged myself and trained hard for my first half-marathon.  I remember being so afraid of what it meant to train for 13.1 miles.  I had only participated in one race which was a corporate 5K race back in 2002.  Though I consider myself pretty fit, training for pavement pounding week after week takes a lot of will power and discipline.  Nevertheless, I can proudly say that I am the owner of four medals, each one representing the different half-marathons I have completed in the past three years.

“New York City is my track” is the motto I have embraced.  Ever since I began running, Riverside Drive and the West Side Highway have become my training grounds.  One of the best experiences during my training was getting access to all of the sights in Central Park, Ft. Tryon and the Cloisters.  Who can even feel exhausted when there is so much beauty to explore?

I have to thank the “Runner’s High” I heard so much about, for getting me to where I am now.  Once I completed my first race, and the subsequent ones, I knew that one of my goals was to eventually run the full marathon.  The year that I ran my first half-marathon, I had also ran to fundraise for an organization that works to help young girls develop healthy lifestyle and self-respect, in order to reduce the numbers of eating disorders and teen pregnancy.

When I wasn’t accepted to the ING New York City Marathon through their lottery system, I knew that I would still do it for a charity.  I found out about Team Catholic Charities NY through a friend, and when I did the research, my heart leapt – I knew I had to try to get on this team.  As I learned in my previous experience in running for charity, when I am running for a good cause, I am fueled to train even harder, because I know people are counting on me.  As I train, it means so much more to me that my own physical endurance will in the end provide physical aid to those who need it most.

As the Associate Director of Catholic Youth Ministry for the Archdiocese of New York, it is an honor to run for Catholic Charities, who has a longstanding tradition of putting others FIRST and treating them with the dignity that they deserve.  I have personally worked with Catholic Charities, and for me it means that I am not only running for an organization – I am running for my family.

76th Annual CYO Club of Champions Tribute and Dinner Raises $700,000 to Support Children and Youth

Thursday, June 7th, 2012

Alfred F. Kelly (center), President and CEO of the New York/New Jersey Super Bowl Host Company, receives the CYO Club of Champions Gold Medal Award, in recognition of his tireless support of and participation in CYO as both coach and benefactor.

A full lineup of champions was honored at the 76th Catholic Youth Organization (CYO) Clubof Champions Tribute and Dinner on Wednesday, June 6, at The Waldorf=Astoria. 750 guests attended the gala event, which raised a record-breaking $700,000 to support children and youth in CYO programs throughout the Archdiocese of New York. (View event photos on Facebook)

The Gold Medal Award,  presented annually to an individual who has provided inspiration and leadership for the youth of New York City, was presented to Alfred F. Kelly, Jr., President and CEO of the 2014 New York/New Jersey Super Bowl Host Committee.  Mr. Kelly has been a longtime supporter of CYO, both as a benefactor and as a coach.

“When I do the math,” said Kelly, “with all the coaching, playing myself, and yes, scorekeeping, I’ve calculated that 42 percent of my life has been associated with CYO.”

Kelly also praised the work of CYO in the lives of youth today, saying:

“In a world where young people communicate in a modern-day form of Morse code, text messaging with numerous shortcuts, CYO provides an alternative,” said Mr. Kelly. “CYO, through its art shows, its summer camps, its ministry programs, cheerleading and sports programs, promotes verbal communication—imagine!—wellness, teamwork, friendship, sportsmanship and values. It is these qualities that form the bedrock of becoming a good person. It is these core elements of life, under the umbrella of our Catholic faith, that helps young people get ready for the migration to college, and ultimately adulthood.” Listen to Alfred F. Kelly’s full speech from the CYO Club of Champions Dinner.

Justin Tuck, All-Pro Defensive End of the New York Giants, received the John V. Mara Sportsman of the Year Award, given to individuals who have exhibited exceptional sportsmanship throughout their careers. Tuck, who with his wife, Lauran Williamson Tuck, have donated reading materials to support schools in the New York City and central Alabama communities, had this to say about giving back: “I hope that my legacy is about more than getting after Tom Brady a couple of times — but about affecting a change, helping young people take advantage of the education that is afforded to them. I hope I can look back and say that I gave these kids had the opportunities that I’ve been afforded in life.”

Alec J. McAuley, Director of CYO of the Archdiocese of New York, and Joseph E. Panepinto, Director of Staten Island Catholic Charities, received the Terence Cardinal Cooke Humanitarian Award for their outstanding commitment to youth.

Honorary Co-Chairs of the event included His Eminence, Timothy Michael Cardinal Dolan, NFL Commissioner Roger S. Goodell, Mrs. Margaret F. Grace and Mrs. Wellington T. Mara. 

The Dinner Co-Chairs were: Mr. and Mrs. William P. Harrington, Mr. and Mrs. Daniel T. Henry, Mr. and Mrs. John K. Mara and Mr. Roger Staubach.  All proceeds from the event will supported CYO programs that serve thousands of children and young people — non-Catholic and Catholic alike– throughout the Archdiocese of New York.

Monsignor Peter Finn, pastor of Blessed Sacrament Parish in Staten Island, delivered the invocation for the evening. Edward Cardinal Egan delivered closing remarks, thanking the honorees for their presence and their support. “I can think of nothing more beautiful than seeing to it that the next generation is well-formed and well instructed, close to the Lord and close to all that is good. And that’s what CYO is about.”

CYO, a division of Catholic Charities, reaches out to more than 28,000 children and youth in the Archdiocese of New York through hundreds of local sports programs, cultural activities, summer camps, community centers, Youth Ministry Programs and retreat centers. Through this broad array of recreational and spiritual growth and development opportunities, CYO promotes lives of promise, accomplishment and hope for young New Yorkers.