|October 21, 2013 • VOL. 51, NO. 18 • Oakland, CA|
Local groups get $200,000 from CCHD
Nine East Bay organizations that help empower people received almost $200,000 in grants through the Catholic Campaign for Human Development. Grant recipients, as well as service award honorees and parish representatives, gathered for a luncheon at St. Columba Parish in Oakland on Oct. 4 to receive their awards.
The Catholic Campaign for Human Development, the domestic anti-poverty program of the U.S. Catholic Bishops, was established in 1969. According to the U.S. Conference of Catholic bishops, CCHD works to break the cycle of poverty by helping low-income people participate in decisions that affect their lives, families and communities.
This work is funded by an annual collection taken up in parishes across the United States on the Sunday before Thanksgiving. This year, the collection is scheduled for Nov. 23-24.
Twenty-five percent of the collection remains in the diocese to be distributed to projects approved by a local committee.
Local grant recipients included:
• Diocese of Oakland — Latino Ministry's Youth in Action (Jovenes en Accion) ($5,000)
Working with the Confirmation leaders in the East Oakland parishes — including St. Louis Bertrand, St. Bernard, St. Elizabeth, St. Anthony and Mary Help of Christians — Jovenes en Accion will use the grant to fund educational and training workshops for 250 teenagers and their families on topics such as violence prevention, respect for life and chastity.
• South Hayward Parish ($10,000). Growing from the success of the Homeless Angels Jewelry Making and Art Program, the South Hayward Parish, a group of churches, has embarked on another income-generating venture. In its new food catering services, participants are trained in food handling and safety.
• United Seniors of Oakland & Alameda County ($5,000)
Grant money will go to the No Wrong Door for Senior Citizens project, which will organize seniors to advocate for a one-stop location to determine eligibility and receive health and supportive services.
• Youth Spirit Artworks ($7,500)
With an art cart in front of the Berkeley Bowl, 2020 Oregon St., Berkeley, from 3:30 to 6:30 p.m. every day, the young artists offer their original artwork, tote bags, T-shirts, mugs and candles for sale. In addition to earning a salary for creating art, the artist receives 50 percent of the proceeds from sale of their work. The spirited group has also moved to a larger studio, at 1740 Alcatraz Ave., Berkeley. Plans are in the works for a second art cart site at Whole Foods on Telegraph Avenue in Berkeley.
• Outstanding service. The local committee presented its outstanding service award to the Sisters of the Holy Family, for the Sisters' continuing work to end human trafficking.
"We never do anything alone," said Sister Gladys Guenther, president of the Holy Family Sisters, in accepting the award, noting the Sisters' collaboration with anti-trafficking organizations such as the Cross Bay Collaborative and SAGE; the Alameda County District Attorney's Office; and the FBI. She recognized Deacon Marty Leach, diaconate candidate Gustavo Escrucería, and the Deacon Assembly of the Diocese of Oakland for their work.
• Two parishes also received awards for their fundraising efforts: St. Columba of Oakland for the largest increase in CCHD collection, St. Isidore of Danville for the largest overall CCHD collection.
Recipients of national grants included:
• Congregations Organizing for Renewal ($40,000)
COR, based in Southern Alameda County, will use the grant money to create alternatives, such as restorative justice, to suspension and expulsion policies in the Hayward Unified School District; projects to increase jobs for the hardest to employ; and to bring the community voice to the Fremont Transit Oriented Development project.
• Genesis Interfaith Community Organizing ($40,000)
CCHD funding will help support leadership training for the leaders of the regional organization whose most recent work involved the restoration of public transit funds, particularly to the bus system, on which so many low-income people rely.
• Oakland Community Organizations ($35,000)
Funds from the grant will help in the longtime organization's work on greater autonomy for schools, as well as to energize citywide violence-prevention strategies, and to work on initiatives for equitable opportunities for the undocumented, particularly immigration reform.
• Parent Voices Oakland ($40,000)
Grant funds will be used for leadership skills development for all levels of leaders in the organization, which advocates for high quality, low-cost and accessible child care for those who need it to work or attend school.
• People United for a Better Life in Oakland ($10,000 technical assistance grant)
The grant will fund a feasibility study and business plans for fresh food enterprises owned by low-income Oakland residents, targeting on providing fresh food in East Oakland.
Luncheon guests heard from Mark Wexler, co-founder and executive director of Not for Sale, an organization that fights human trafficking by seeking economic solutions.
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