Posts Tagged ‘Rockland County’

Disabled Teens Take Their Turn Changing Lives

Friday, March 14th, 2014

By Alice Kenny

In a classroom decorated with primary-colored posters detailing how to tell time, multiply and “Follow Your Conscience,” teens with various disabilities from St. Dominic’s School packed boxes with donated food to support Catholic Charities “Feeding Our Neighbors” campaign.

“A lot of these children feel disconnected,” said St. Dominic’s Principal Paul Siragusa. “Helping feed the hungry makes them feel they have an impact on society that they never before could have dreamed of.”

And the 80 students, ages 5- 21, had a major impact. Together they took on the entire food drive, from making posters to studying foods’ nutritional values to soliciting donations to preparing food for distribution. All told, the students collected 500 pounds of food, enough to provide the hungry with 625 meals.

Some of the financially less fortunate children contributed as well, which, Mr. Siragusa said, “was worth more than an adults bringing in an entire bag.”

Located in Rockland County’s rolling hills, St. Dominic’s School provides targeted learning for children with special needs. Its intimate size, including two instructors for every eight students, is balanced by its large reputation. St. Dominic’s draws children from New York City, Westchester, Rockland and Orange counties whose needs are too great to be met by their local schools.

The school is part of Saint Dominic’s Home. This nonprofit Catholic social welfare agency affiliated with Catholic Charities is dedicated to meeting the educational, physical, social, emotional, medical, vocational and spiritual needs of 2,300 individuals who are developmentally disabled, socially disadvantaged and/or vocationally challenged.

Founded in 1878, Saint Dominic’s Home began as a safe haven for immigrant children who had been abandoned on the streets of New York City. Today, St. Dominc’s Home provides person-centered care for individuals with developmental disabilities in the Bronx, Orange and Rockland counties so they can live their lives with hope and dignity in a family-like setting. It prepares and supports foster parents so they can give children, who often have been neglected, abused, or abandoned, a brighter future and a loving home and family. It delivers a continuum of care to adults with mental illness and provides them the greatest level of independence. It grows the minds of disadvantaged preschoolers so they are motivated to excel. It gives children and youth with developmental disabilities and serious emotional disturbance living at home the opportunity to live in a more stable family environment.

And, through St. Dominic’s School, it enables children facing emotional and educational challenges to reach their potential.

The food drive, Mr. Siragusa said, has served as a springboard for a variety of activities. Students now participate in “Letters to the Heroes” where they write letters to soldiers thanking them for their service. They also take part in “Operation Goody Bag,” sending candy and homemade Valentine’s Day cards to first responders.

Despite their personal challenges, the students have learned, Mr. Siragusa said, that “there is always something they can do to help someone else.”

Learn more about St. Dominic’s School and Home.

Raising Five Tons of Fresh Vegetables for Hungry New Yorkers

Monday, May 20th, 2013

By Alice Kenny

Determined to raise 8,000 – 10,000 pounds of vegetables for the hungry, dozens of volunteers planted pepper, lettuce, broccoli, tomato and eggplant seedlings at the Catholic Community Services of Rockland “Garden of Love” on May 18. Vegetables from the garden are distributed to families through food pantries throughout the county.

The garden, preparing for its fourth season, has been expanded with the help of volunteers and those who donated materials including tools, soil and fences. Renewing its commitment to the community, organizers have recently renamed the initiative “Produce the Produce.”

Check out photos of your neighborhood volunteers and more Garden of Love updates in The Journal News.

Are you hungry and need help?

  • Contact us.  At Catholic Charities, no one is ever turned away.
  • If you live in Rockland County, please call 845 942-5791.

Help us help your neighbors in need.

Rockland Youth Would Make Mother Teresa Proud

Wednesday, April 10th, 2013

 By Alice Kenny

After witnessing tens of thousands of starving children and families, Mother Teresa, a Catholic activist and saint, decided to keep her advice simple to fight these overwhelming odds.

“If you can’t feed a hundred people,” she told followers, “then just feed one.”

Inspired by this advice, St. Catherine’s Parish in Rockland County decided to make feeding the hungry their Lenten Challenge.  Mobilized by the New York Archdiocesan Feeding Our Neighbors campaign to shore up food pantries’ dwindling supplies, the parish asked children that attend the church to donate shopping bags filled with food from February 13 through March 30 during Lent.

Students broke into teams that competed to bring in the most food donations.  All told, the students brought in nearly two tons– 3,799 pounds – of food.

They donated this bounty to the food pantry run by Rockland Catholic Community Services.

“I was thrilled when I saw the amount of food the youth were able to collect,” said Catholic Community Services of Rockland Executive Director Martha Robles.  “I told them – and I’m sure – that ‘Mother Teresa is so proud of you.’”

Calling all CYO basketball players, cheerleaders, runners — and families and friends to cheer them on.

Friday, March 8th, 2013

 By Alice Kenny

Check out these upcoming events:

Saturday 3/9 and Sunday 3/10 - First Round of Archdiocesan CYO Basketball Playoffs

Ulster County:  John A. Coleman Catholic High School.  Games begin at 10:00 am on 3/9/13.

Staten Island:  CYO-MIV Center.  Games start at 9:00 am on Saturday, 3/9/13 and 1:00 pm on Sunday, 3/10/13.

Bronx:  Our Lady of Mount Carmel School. 3/10/13. Game times TBA.

Orange County: 3/9/13. Game times TBA.

Saturday 3/1657th Archdiocesan CYO Cheerleading Competition at Fordham University 

The competition begins at 10:00 am

Saturday 3/16 - CYO Developmental Track Clinic and Relays at Fordham Preparatory School *

Clinic will be held with four-time Olympic Athlete (and CYO Board Member) Aliann Pompey.  Registration begins at 8:45 am


Saturday 3/16 and Sunday 3/17Second Round of Archdiocesan CYO Basketball Playoffs

Rockland County:   Pearl River High School and Dominican College.  3/16/13. Game times TBA.

Staten Island: CYO-MIV Center. Games start at 9:00 am on Saturday and 1:00 pm on Sunday


Saturday 3/23 - Archdiocesan CYO Basketball Championships

Held at the CYO-MIV Center and St. Joseph by the Sea High School in Staten Island.

Games at the CYO-MIV Center start at 9:00 am.

Games at St. Joseph by the Sea High School start at 11:00 am

Events are held for existing players on existing teams EXCEPT for the Track Meet/Clinic on 3/16.

*The track meet/clinic welcome athletes of all experience levels, with the focus strongly placed on education and participation.  The event is open to all CYO Teams throughout the Archdiocese of New York, and individuals may register and represent their parish.  All age levels and abilities are encouraged to attend.

Need more information? Call Sarah Masterson at 646-794-2062

Would you like to volunteer?  Click here.

CYO Tips Off Another Win

Friday, December 14th, 2012

CYO Tips Off Another Win

By Alice Kenny

Catholic Charities CYO basketball is tipping off another win. Enrollment is up for the 2012-2013 girls and boys basketball season, says CYO Director Edwin Broderick.

The teams provide exercise, a healthy recreational outlet, guidance and a sense of community for children and teenagers throughout the more than 4,000-square mile Archdiocese of New York.

Here are some numbers to cheer:

  •  1600 teams throughout the
    Archdiocese of New York
  • 637 teams in Westchester County
  •  403 teams in Staten Island
  •  251 teams in Rockland County
  •   82 teams in Orange County
  •   49 teams in Ulster County
  •   37 teams in Dutchess County

“Our success  and growth would not be possible without the dedication and  support of our 4,000 volunteers, the hard work of our county  directors and the leadership and support of Catholic Charities Executive Director Msgr. Sullivan and Catholic Charities Community Services Executive Director  Beatriz  Diaz  Taveras,” Mr. Broderick said.

Would you like to become a coach or sign up your child for a team?  Contact your local parish or call Catholic Charities CYO at 646-794-3619.

 

Rockland County Inaugural Hunger Awareness and Action Week

Tuesday, August 28th, 2012

Catholic Community Services in Rockland County –along with a core group of representatives from Rockland county-based organizations that work to feed the hungry — are using National Hunger Awareness Month, September 2012, as a springboard to call attention to local needs and local organizations working to combat hunger.

They are proclaiming September 6 – September 13 as Rockland County’s inaugural “Hunger Awareness and Action Week” to increase donations to food pantries and feeding programs and step up efforts to raise awareness of the issue of hunger.

Click here to learn more about Hunger Awareness Action Week events that you can join to help feed the hungry.

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.

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.