Posts Tagged ‘hunger’

New York Times Reports Increased Demand for Food Banks as Donations Decline

Friday, January 24th, 2014

By Alice Kenny

Exacerbating cuts made last November in food stamp programs that feed the hungry, Congress is now eying significant additional reductions, reports The New York Times on Wednesday, January 22.

“Food banks across the country,” reports The New York Times, “are increasing efforts to prepare for the increased demand even as donations decline.”*

It is crucial now more than ever to join with us in Feeding Our Neighbors, our united effort to fight hunger.

Now in its third year, Catholic Charities will be joined by UJA/Federation to make Feeding Our Neighbors 2014 an interfaith campaign on behalf of New York’s hungry.

Starting January 26th, we’ll be leveraging our collective reach and already expansive networks for even greater impact — with the goal of collecting and distributing a combined one million meals to feed the hungry throughout New York.

Too many children and families struggle every day with hunger.

Feeding Our Neighbors, An Interfaith Response unites Catholic Charities and UJA-Federation of New York, two of the largest faith-based, not-for-profit organizations, to combine efforts to help fight hunger and replenish dwindling supplies.

You can be part of this united effort.  Help us collect and distribute food packages across pantries and shelters throughout the New York area.

Because ultimately, we do the most when we do it together.

Please join us!

Click here to donate – and write “Feeding Our Neighbors” in the comments field.

Reading this on your smart phone?  Text CCHOPE to 85944 to make a one-time $10 donation.   (Standard text rates apply.)

*Read the full story in The New York Times.

 

Invisible Child

Thursday, December 12th, 2013

“She wakes to the sound of breathing,” New York Times reporter Andrea Elliott writes in this compelling new series that shines a light on the growing number of homeless children in New York City.

“The smaller children lie tangled beside her, their chests rising and falling under winter coats and wool blankets. A few feet away, their mother and father sleep near the mop bucket they use as a toilet. Two other children share a mattress by the rotting wall where the mice live, opposite the baby, whose crib is warmed by a hair dryer perched on a milk crate.”

Ms. Elliott’s story follows the life of Dasani, an eleven-year-old who lives in the shadows of New York City’s high rises.  Her life appears more reminiscent of a 19th-century Dickens novel than of New York’s better-known twenty-first century stories of success.

The reality is that hunger and homelessness is growing in New York.

As Ms. Elliott reports:

  • Dasani belongs to a vast and invisible tribe of more than 22,000 homeless children in New York, the highest number since the Great Depression.
  • The ranks of the poor have risen, with almost half of New Yorkers living near or below the poverty line.
  • One in five American children is now living in poverty.
  • Nearly one-third of New York’s homeless children are supported by a working adult.
  • Even with both parents working full-time jobs, on minimum wage they would have combined salaries of only 2,300 per month.

Dasani and her fellow modern-day Oliver Twists have come to be known, among the city’s homeless advocates, as “the lost generation.”

At Catholic Charities we find and help children and families in need.

Thanks to Catholic Charities and our affiliated agencies, this year:

  • 6,600,000  children and their families received nutritious meals in parish & community food programs
  • 9,051   children and their families were provided with emergency overnight shelter
  • 7,254   children are growing and learning in day-care
  • 6,066   children and teens were placed in safe foster care
  • 4,628   youth are participating in sound after-school programs
  • 382      children were adopted by loving families

Do you or does someone you know need help?

Please call the Catholic Charities Help line at: 888-774-7900

For more information about a particular service, click below:

Day Care Summer Camps
Foster Care Community Centers
Adoption Preventive Services
After School / Out of School Time Activities

Can you help?  Join us now during this Christmas season and throughout the year.

 

 

Time Magazine Names Pope Francis “Person of the Year”

Wednesday, December 11th, 2013

L’Osservatore Romano

Calling Pope Francis “The People’s Pope,” Time magazine today named Pope Francis its Person of the Year.

“For pulling the papacy out of the palace and into the streets, for committing the world’s largest church to confronting its deepest needs, and for balancing judgment with mercy, Pope Francis is Time’s 2013 Person of the Year,” Time said in its announcement.

The honor comes just one day after Pope Francis called for a global “wave of prayer” to combat the growing epidemic of hunger.  The Vatican-based federation of Catholic charities, Caritas Internacionalis, organized this global campaign of prayer and action.

Catholic Charities Executive Director Msgr. Kevin Sullivan joined with Pope Francis yesterday to pray for the millions of people who face hunger throughout the world, urging others to do so as well.  

Day in and day out, Catholic Charities helps solve the problems of those in need. The hungry, the homeless, the neglected child –  non-Catholics and Catholics alike – receive help and hope promptly, locally, always with compassion and dignity.

Please join us in celebrating this honor for Pope Francis.

Join us, also, in heeding his call.

 

From the Shadows to the Light – Undocumented Family Rebuilds Their Life

Wednesday, October 23rd, 2013

By Teresa Santiago

When Hurricane Sandy began assaulting the Midland Beach area of Staten Island, Jesus Maria Aguilar, his wife Patricia and son Allan did not imagine the devastation that it would leave in its wake.

They lived in Midland Avenue right in the middle of a flood zone area but did not receive any warning or evacuation advisory leading up to the super storm. If warning signs were posted they did not understand because they were not in Spanish. “The day of the storm we were scared because we were feeling the strength and power of the storm. The wind and rain was like nothing we had ever experienced. By the time we decided to leave our apartment the water was already up to our thighs,” recalls Patricia.

The Maria Aguilar family went to stay with a friend on Tompkins Avenue. Less than an hour of being in their friend’s home they received a call from a neighbor informing them that their apartment building was on fire.

The family was not able to see the damage until days later after the flood waters had receded. They were told that the fire department tried to stop the fire but could not get near the building because the flood waters were too high. When the family was able to go back to their home they were totally devastated. “Nothing was left but ashes. We lost everything but the clothes on our backs and the few things we packed to weather the storm,” recalled Jesus.

“I ran into the freezing water towards the building thinking that there was something I could save,” said Patricia. “We work so hard for the few things we have. To see everything that we have worked for gone was incomprehensible. I was stunned.”

The fire occurred when 90 mile per hour winds and rain caused an electrical short in the power line in front of the Maria Aguilar’s apartment building.

For months the Maria Aguilar family lived with their nephew with no help or direction on where to go for help. Since they are undocumented they were not able to receive any federal government aid including FEMA.

“We were desperate. We had no money. I worked when I could find it. Because of my arthritis and diabetes acting up it made it very difficult to find work during this time. A neighbor told my nephew about El Centro del Inmigrante, (El Centro), about the services they provided and that it was all confidential. We immediately went and started our recovery process,” said Jesus.

At El Centro the family met with Catholic Charities disaster case manager Melba Rodriguez and received immediate help, gift cards for food and basic necessities as well as the down payment for their new apartment. What they urgently needed was a refrigerator and air conditioner. The family was using plastic coolers and ice to keep their perishable food cold and edible. In early September, Jesus received $1,300 in Home Depot gift cards to purchase his refrigerator and air conditioner.

El Centro is one of the community-based agencies subcontracted by Catholic Charities to provide a locally-based disaster case manager for each family that have unmet needs related to Hurricane Sandy. El Centro addresses the needs of newly arrived immigrant day laborers and their families. Through immigrant and labor advocacy, educational workshops, labor leadership training, and emergency intervention for hunger, homelessness, health and safety needs, El Centro provides opportunities for economic empowerment, community-building and organizing.

Catholic Charities has a proven track record of managing disaster cases beginning with the 911 terror attack in 2001 then Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee in late 2011. The NYS Division of Homeland Security Office of Emergency Management, (OEM), has an existing contract with Catholic Charities to manage the DCM program for the 34 counties that were impacted by the Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee and requested that Catholic Charities expand on this experience and manage the long term disaster case management program for survivors of Sandy.

The program is designed to provide a locally-based disaster case manager for each family in the 13 impacted New York counties that have unmet needs related to Hurricane Sandy. By funding networks of community-based agencies, NYS hopes to provide easy access to support residents seeking help and to avoid duplication of services.

Catholic Charities has subcontracted with 20 locally-based not-for-profit organizations with demonstrated expertise in the provision of case management services to serve impacted communities. El Centro is one of these community-based agencies funded.

Through this program Catholic Charities case manager Rodriguez has laid out a long term plan for the Maria Aguilar family that has assessed their immediate and long term situation. She has assisted them in receiving the aid that they need to get back on their feet. “The Maria Aguilar family has gone through an extremely difficult life altering situation, but they are resilient and hard working people,” said Ms. Rodriguez.

“We finally feel that there is a light at the end of the tunnel, we are feeling better emotionally, physically and finally feeling hopeful for a good future. We are extremely grateful for the help that Ms. Rodriguez, Catholic Charities and El Centro has given us. I don’t know what we would have done without the help” acknowledged Patricia.

“I thank God everyday that we are alive and that we suffered no injuries, material things can always be replaced. We came to this country from Acapulco, Mexico nine years ago with nothing and we have always worked hard. We will continue to build our lives. It is the only thing we can do,” concluded Jesus.

Youth Competition Garners 7,000 Meals for Hungry New Yorkers

Thursday, April 11th, 2013

 By Alice Kenny

Thanks to a contest that pitted youth against youth and parish against parish, Catholic Charities in partnership with the Office of Youth Ministry pulled together an additional 7,000 meals for hungry New Yorkers at Catholic Youth Day on April 6 at the College of Mt. St. Vincent in Riverdale.

Holy Rosary Parish of Portchester won first place by bringing in cartons packed with 460 pounds of food.  All told, the contest yielded close to 1300 pounds of food donations.

Holy Rosary’s win entitles them to a day with Fr. Joseph Espaillat, director of youth ministry for the Archdiocese of New York.  He will personally visit their parish or youth group and preach, lead a retreat, celebrate Mass, play kickball, and, if they like, throw a pizza party for parish youth.

Catholic Charities provided staff and support for the Office of Youth Ministry contest to help feed our hungry neighbors. The Youth Day event featured music and performances by different ministries in the Archdiocese of New York including Full Armor Band, Fr. Stan Fortuna, CFR and many more.

The contest was part of the Feeding Our Neighbors campaign to help pantries feed those who would otherwise go hungry.  Feeding Our Neighbors is an interfaith effort to fight hunger by replenishing dwindling supplies in emergency food programs that continue to be stretched thin.

During this time of great need, one in five New York State children grow up in poverty and more than one million New Yorkers do not have enough to eat. This campaign grows out of an awareness and concern that embraces New Yorkers of all religions who must turn to food pantries, soup kitchens and senior center meal programs, to sustain them and their families.

The food donations were delivered to St. Peter’s Parish food pantry in Yonkers, NY. Pound for pound and dollar for dollar, the donations represent an additional 1,040 meals for hungry children and families served by this pantry plus collections at masses that raised $1500 to support 6,000 more meals in the Archdiocese of New York.

Join us in feeding our neighbors.

Do your part to make sure no hungry neighbor is turned away.

Help Feed Your New York Neighbors

Friday, January 25th, 2013

By Alice Kenny

Do your part to make sure no hungry neighbor is turned away. www.CatholicCharitiesNY.org/FeedingOurNeighbors

  • $11.16 helps feed a child for one day.
  • $45 helps feed a family of four for one day.

From January 27th-February 3rd, you can help answer the call to feed the hungry through Catholic Charities annual Feeding Our Neighbors campaign to replenish New York’s stretched food pantries and soup kitchens.  Your contribution can do so much.

Interfaith Hunger Summit Calls New Yorkers to Action to Fight Hunger

Friday, December 28th, 2012

By Alice Kenny

In New York City, one in five adults and one in four children don’t get enough food. On December 20th, the New York City Interfaith Hunger Summit brought together faith leaders, congregants and concerned New Yorkers from a diverse cross-section to discuss ways to take action to lessen hunger and poverty in our community.

Regardless of a person’s religion, our faith and beliefs call us to serve the poor and help our neighbors. The Interfaith Hunger Summit was organized to promote concrete solutions and develop a “call to action” which asked “elected officials to create jobs and reduce poverty, strengthen the social safety net, and make healthier food more available and affordable in low-income neighborhoods.”

Along with other faith leaders, Monsignor Kevin Sullivan, Executive Director of Catholic Charities New York, spoke at the summit. He discussed the importance of enabling people to have the food they need in their own homes, as well as the necessity and lasting effects of children under the age of three getting sufficient food.

While the summit was a start, Monsignor Sullivan noted that the conversation needs to expand to the rest of the community to promote meaningful action, and that food, not hunger, should become part of the debate.

To contribute to the Archdiocesan-wide campaign to replenish food pantries, donate to or volunteer for Feeding Our Neighbors and help ensure no hungry neighbor gets turned away.

Rockland County Community Garden Provides Healthy Food for the Hungry

Sunday, May 13th, 2012

View more photos of the Blessing of the Soil and the Youth Art Show on Facebook. http://on.fb.me/Kuaosj

There is something special growing in Rockland County. Catholic Charities Community Services of Rockland (CCSR) is making it possible for the local community to take advantage of fresh, healthy produce grown on-site at the agency’s community garden, named the “Garden of Love.”

For the third year in a row, the growing season was kicked off with hunger awareness art exhibition and a “Blessing of the Soil” ceremony. The ceremony celebrated CCSR’s successful efforts to raise community awareness of hunger and the need to build an integrated, sustainable, and cost-effective response.

Monsignor J. Weber, vicar of Rockland County, was joined by Msgr. Kevin Sullivan, executive director of Catholic Charities, and Michael Kohut, mayor of Haverstraw. Head chefs from local restaurants, including Guarino’s, Ditto, Union Restaurant, La Hacienda de Manuel, Antoine’s, McGuire’s, and others presented cooking demonstrations focusing on healthy eating and the use of vegetables as ingredients and main courses.

The Youth Hunger Awareness Artwork Project displayed artwork by Rockland County youth focused on the theme of hunger. The public got the chance to learn about the preparation of vegetarian cuisine, meet the young artists and their instructors and learn about the growing problem of hunger in America.

Thank You for Feeding Our Neighbors

Friday, April 13th, 2012

Late last year, Cardinal Dolan identified a critical need in the New York Archdiocese: hungry families and dwindling food pantries. He asked us to meet the challenge of replenishing food pantries and soup kitchens to ensure that no hungry neighbor is turned away.

Between January 22nd and January 29th, this challenge was met. Thanks to the collaborative efforts of the Catholic schools, parishes and institutions of the New York Archdiocese, we raised more than 575,000 meals through the Feeding our Neighbors Campaign: A Catholic Response. Just as important, our message resonated — no hungry neighbor, non-Catholics and Catholics alike, should be turned away.

Parishes responded by filling the boxes provided, publicizing the campaign, and holding a second collection to help meet this basic human need. Catholic Youth Organization (CYO) teams throughout the Archdiocese pledged generous goals to support their home parishes in this endeavor. Archdiocesan Catholic schools joined in by holding special food drives, collecting thousands of pounds of food through the generous support of students and their families.

We extend special thanks, and congratulations, to organizations that went above and beyond in contributing to the Feeding Our Neighbors campaign. Holy Name of Jesus, Valhalla, was the highest-contributing parish, with more than 5,025 pounds of food collected. Regina Coeli School was the highest-contributing Catholic school, with more than 1,350 pounds of food collected.

Rusty Staub and the Mobile Food Pantry helped collect food donations at St. Patrick’s Cathedral and throughout the Archdiocese throughout the week-long campaign. Generous support and partnership was also provided by the Archdiocesan Catechetical Office and the Office of the Superintendent of Schools.

Because of the hard work of many, more than 40 parish and community-based food pantries and soup kitchens received food or grants:

STATEN ISLAND: St. Edward’s Food Pantry at Mt. Loretto, St. Ann Parish, St. Mary of the Assumption and Holy Family Food Pantry.

MANHATTAN: St. Mary’s Food Pantry, Church of St. Gregory the Great Food Pantry, Our Lady of Lourdes Pantry, Franciscan Sisters of the Renewal – Fr. Solanus Casey Food Pantry, Kennedy Center Food Pantry; Harlem, Washington Heights Ecumenical Food Pantry, St. Cecilia’s Food Pantry; East Harlem, Our Lady of Sorrows Food Pantry; Lower East Side, All Saints Food Pantry; Harlem and St. Mark’s Food Pantry; Harlem.

BRONX: St. Crispin’s, St. Raymond’s Food Pantry, St. Simon Stock Food Pantry, St. Anthony Parish Food Pantry, Franciscan Sisters of the Renewal Guadalupe Convent, Immaculate Conception Food Pantry, Our Lady of Grace Social Outreach Pantry and Highbridge Community Pantry/Muslim Women’s Institute.

WESTCHESTER: Holy Rosary; Port Chester, Holy Spirit Food Pantry; Cortlandt Manor, Food Bank of Westchester, Franciscan Friars of the Renewal; Yonkers, St. Mary’s Food Pantry; Mohegan Lake, St. Joseph’s; Yonkers, St. Peter’s Parish Food Pantry; Yonkers, Sacred Heart Church; Mount Vernon and Sacred Heart Food Pantry; Dobbs Ferry.

ROCKLAND: Catholic Community Services of Rockland and St. Peter’s Parish Food Pantry.

DUTCHESS: Hyde Park Community Pantry, St. Denis Parish Food Pantry; Hopewell Jct., St. Vincent de Paul Food Pantry and St. Mary Mother of the Church Parish Food Pantry; Fishkill.

SULLIVAN: St. George – St. Francis Parish Food Pantry; Jeffersonville and Federation of the Homeless.

We look forward to another successful Feeding Our Neighbors campaign in 2013. Thank you again for your support.

New York Archdiocese Joins Forces to Feed Our Neighbors

Friday, January 20th, 2012

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By Marianna Reilly

January 20, 2012 — From January 22 through January 29, organizations throughout the Archdiocese of New York will join forces to help address the hunger crisis in our community. The Feeding Our Neighbors campaign is a unified response to Cardinal-designate Timothy Dolan’s call to “feed the hungry in the name of Jesus,” ensuring that none of our neighbors are turned away when they look to the church for help. Learn more and join the campaign today.

Join the fight against hunger. Tell us what you will be contributing to our Archdiocesan-wide drive on Facebook.

Looking for ideas? Check out this guide to food donations:

The Archdiocese of New York network needs these nutritious foods:

Vegetables

  • Canned Vegetables
  • Tomato Sauce
  • Vegetable Soups
Fruits

  • Canned Fruits (in juice or light syrup)
  • Dried Fruits
  • 100% Fruit Juices
Proteins

  • Beans- canned or dry
  • Peanut Butter
  • Nuts
  • Canned Meat (chicken, beef, ham)
  • Canned Fish (tuna, salmon, sardines)
  • Canned Stews (chicken or beef)
Grains

  • Rice (white, brown, flavored)
  • Pasta/noodles
  • Dry Cereal and Hot Cereal (grits, oatmeal, farina)
  • Flour/Cornmeal/Baking Mixes
  • Whole Wheat Crackers
  • Couscous
Dairy

  • Dry Milk packets
  • Shelf stable milk
  • Soy/Almond/Rice Milk
Other Items

  • Nutritional Beverages (Boost, Ensure, Carnation Instant Breakfast)
  • Spices
  • Coffee/Tea
  • Personal Care Items

To ensure safety, we cannot use:

  • Rusty or Unlabeled Cans
  • Avoid glass containers and all perishable foods
  • Homemade Items
  • Noncommercial Canned Items
  • Noncommercial Packaged Items
  • Alcoholic Beverages & Mixes
  • Open or Used Items