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placeholder Holiday Guide

Make plans for early Advent events

Filipino tradition of Simbang Gabi
kicks off Dec. 9

1,000 honor Vietnamese martyrs

Gift of Giving

Dec. 10-11 aids
elderly Sisters, Brothers,
order priests

Local charities
deliver holiday
season wish lists

900 youths
participate in rugged
cross country race


Sister Margaret Campbell, SNJM

Sister Joan Mary Dwyer, OP

Financial Services

Why your
college-age children
need an estate plan

Make sure every
dollar you give
to charity counts

Making the wrong choice with Medicare can prove costly


Jubilee of Mercy:
A pilgrimage to Italy


Irish pilgrimage: Footsteps of saints and scholars

placeholder November 21, 2016   •   VOL. 54, NO. 20   •   Oakland, CA
Gift of Giving

Local charities deliver holiday season wish lists

Every Christmas season, The Catholic Voice provides a list of charities, some Catholic, as well as interfaith organizations, that can use your help. The information is provided by the charities.

A Friendly Manor/Place
A drop-in center for homeless women founded by the Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet.

Need: Christmas gifts for the women (e.g., scarves, gloves, hats, jackets, sweatshirts, sweatpants, or gift sets of soaps/perfume).

Where: 2298 San Pablo Ave., Oakland 94612

Contact: 510-451-8923

Abode Services
Abode, which began delivering services to individuals and families without a home in Fremont, is expanding its services to the Tri-Valley area, including Livermore and Pleasanton. Since 2010, Abode Services has moved more than 3,000 adults and children from homelessness into homes.

Need: Gift cards (Target, Safeway or Payless ShoeSource); holiday dinner basket (canned vegetables, a frozen turkey or ham, stuffing, instant mashed potatoes, dinner rolls and a dessert); winter weather clothing; gift baskets; online donations.

Where: 588 Brown Road, Fremont, 94539 (Hours 10 a.m.-6 p.m. weekdays; 9 a.m.-1 p.m. Saturday-Sunday)

Contact: Jean Morgan, community outreach director, 510-252-0910, ext. 804, jmorgan@abodeservices.org. Online: www.abodeservices.org.

Alameda County Community Food Bank
The Food Bank, which distributes food for 49,000 meals weekly through 275 food pantries, soup kitchens and community agencies, has been in business since 1985 — with a vision of the day when "we can go out of business."

Need: Monetary donations; non-perishable food items; volunteer time.
Where: 7900 Edgewater Drive, Oakland, 94621

Contact: www.accfb.org or 800-870-FOOD.

Bay Area Crisis Nursery
The Bay Area Crisis Nursery's mission is child abuse prevention. The only crisis nursery in the Bay Area, it provides short-term residential care for children to give parents time to focus on solving a crisis. Knowing their children are safe, the parents can make better use of other services to resolve crisis like homelessness, domestic violence, mental or physical illness and a myriad of other unexpected emergencies.

Need: New toys (no war, violent toys, guns or violent action figures), clothes (for all ages), books for all age groups, sports equipment, and G-rated DVDs and E-rated game cartridges.

Deliver to: 1506 Mendocino Drive, Concord, 94521

Contact: 925-685-6633.

Birthright of Concord
A nonprofit crisis pregnancy center offering free, confidential, non-judgmental service to pregnant women.

Need: Maternity clothes; diapers to size 4; volunteers; monetary donations welcome.

Mail address: 3106 Clayton Road, Concord 94519

Contact: 925-798-7227.

Birthright of San Lorenzo
A nonprofit crisis pregnancy center offering free, confidential, non-judgmental service to pregnant women.

Need: Cash donations; diapers; volunteers who can work directly with women in crisis and provide office assistance.

Where: 1048 Grant Ave., San Lorenzo 94580

Contact: 510-481-9677; contactus@birthrightofsanlorenzo.com.

Mercy Brown Bag Program
Sponsored by Mercy Retirement & Care Center, this program provides bags of nutritious groceries to over 3,000 needy seniors twice monthly, free of charge. The program helps seniors make ends meet, retain their health and stay in their own homes.

Need: Cash donations, large-sized paper or plastic bags, produce bags, Ziploc bags and volunteers to deliver groceries to homebound seniors twice a month.

Where: 3431 Foothill Blvd., Oakland 94601

Contact: Krista Lucchesi, Director, 510-534-8540, ext. 369

Monument Crisis Center of Contra Costa County
A family resource center assisting and stabilizing the low-income community with nutritious groceries, resource and referrals, adult education, health and wellness workshops, youth, family and senior programs.

Need: Donations via checks or credit card to purchase food; food donations of fresh, packaged or canned foods; diapers, especially sizes 4-6; grocery gift cards to Safeway, Food Maxx or Grocery Outlet. Most of our client families have housing but new sleeping bags are requested for our homeless families. For further information and to donate online: www.monumentcrisiscenter.org

Where: 1990 Market St. Concord 94520. Hours: 9 a.m. to noon and 1:30 to 4:30 p.m. Monday-Thursday; extended hours until 7 p.m. on Tuesdays.

Contact: Sandra Scherer, executive director, 925-825-7751, ext.105; sscherer@monumentcrisiscenter.org.

Oakland Elizabeth House
Oakland Elizabeth House is a transitional program for women and women with children who have experienced homelessness, violence, addiction or poverty. Its mission is to support women and children in their transition to independence.

Need: Gift cards (Safeway, Target, Wal-Mart, Ross, Home Depot, Trader Joe's); baby items (diapers, baby wipes, baby monitors); general cleaning items; rain gear (children and adults); food items (sealed/current expiration dates, broth, soy milk, flour, rice); call 510-658-1380 for list of other needs.

Where: 6423 Colby St., Oakland 94618.

Contact: 510-601-1213; www.oakehouse.org

Next Step Learning Center
An older youth and adult literacy, high school equivalency preparation and college transition program operated by the Sisters of the Holy Names.

Need: Volunteer tutors, cash donations for literacy books; financial assistance for students unable to afford a bus pass or to pay cost of high school equivalency examination fees.

Where: 2222 Curtis St., Oakland 94607.

Contact: Lisa Stringer, executive director or Peggy Presley, program director, 510-251-1731.

Nights on the Streets-Catholic Worker
Hospitality to the Body of Christ (the homeless and needy in local communities) by providing food, clothing, shelter, counseling and referral, and assisting others who do so.

Need: Prayers for health, guidance and the support of our continuing works of mercy; financial support for our 20th year of hospitality and 14th year of shelter operation run with staff from two Catholic Worker houses; volunteers to prepare and service thrice-weekly "soup nights" each winter (this includes cooking 10 gallons of soup and distribution the same evening); servers for our Sunday breakfast served al fresco at two locations in Berkeley. (Our bishop, Michael C. Barber, SJ, comes and serves at this event — get to know and serve with your bishop!) Sleeping bags are always needed and forever in short supply. A structure capable of housing 8-10 workers and guests including an expanded kitchen; a food storage area and extended bathroom/shower facilities to supplement existing shelter and hospitality facilities in the East Bay.

Mail address: PO Box 13468, Berkeley 94712-4468.

Contact: J.C. Orton, coordinator, 510-684-1892; noscw@sbcglobal.net.

Oakland Catholic Worker
A hospitality house for Latin American immigrants and refugees which has as its mission, "living simply and communally in a community of multicultural volunteers and guests; helping those most in need; supporting an extended community in keeping itself organized and healthy; changing the unjust structures of our society."

Need: Financial donations to assist our many needs; food donations, such as rice, beans, and canned goods; cleaning supplies; gift cards for Smart and Final, Safeway, Home Depot and Office Depot. We need volunteers to help prepare and serve hot meals from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Mondays and Wednesdays, and to help with our grocery distribution from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Thursdays. We sometimes need volunteers for our ESL program.

Where: 4848 International Blvd., Oakland 94601.

Contact: 510-533-7375; oaklandcatholicworker@yahoo.com.

St. Vincent de Paul of Alameda County
The Society of St. Vincent de Paul of Alameda County is a multi-service organization that provides access to much needed goods and services such as the Free Dining Room, Winter Shelter, job training, drop-in centers, free clothing and family services to help people break out of the cycle of poverty.

Need: New toys for children; gently-worn coats for adults; non-perishable food for the holidays; monetary donations and volunteers.

Contact: Muna Texier, 2272 San Pablo Ave., Oakland, 94612
510-719-0774 for information or make donations at www.svdp-alameda.org.

St. Vincent de Paul of Contra Costa County
Founded in 1964, the Society of St. Vincent de Paul of Contra Costa County offers Thanksgiving and Christmas programs to support the needy from its centralized District Council-Family Resource Center in Pittsburg, and 27 parish-based branches throughout the county.

Christmas Basket Program: Registration required, food gift cards provided to 50 families with children, (700 individuals).

Need: Volunteers, cash donations, food donations for our food pantries

Where: SVdP, 2210 Gladstone Drive, Pittsburg 94565

Contact: 925-439-5060; or send checks to Society of St. Vincent de Paul of Contra Costa County (SVdP) Attn: Christmas Program, 2210 Gladstone Drive, Pittsburg 94565. Donate online: www.svdp-cc.org.

Holiday One Warm Coat: SVdP is distributing donated coats to the needy throughout the holiday season.

Contact: Stephen Krank, 925-439-5060, s.krank@svdp-cc.org.

Christmas Food/ Gift Basket programs: SVdP Conferences provide help via food/gift baskets to more than 13,000 needy individuals throughout the county. The 27 SVdP Conferences in Contra Costa County are providing special Christmas food/gift/blankets programs to more than 3,300 needy families.

Need: Turkeys, hams, hygiene items, toys and books for children, socks for children and adults (preferably bundled in packages of three by size so it's easy to distribute), pajamas for children and adults, diapers and baby wipes, blankets and sleeping bags, food (uncooked and unopened), paper and/or plastic bags (zipper-lock sandwich and gallon size bags), messages of hope and love during the holidays in the form of letters and drawings and cash donations

Contact: Steve Krank, 925-439-5060, s.krank@svdp-cc.org

Send checks to: SVdP of Contra Costa County, 2210 Gladstone Drive, Pittsburg 94565, Attn: Christmas Basket program.

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