Food Pantry Needs
• Dry pinto beans (1-3 lb bags)
• Baby food
• Boxed sides (Rice a Roni, Knorrs flavored rice/noodles, instant potatoes, Hamburger Helper, etc.)
• Coffee, tea, hot chocolate
• Baking items
Thanks to our great groups of volunteers this week: Western Springs Christian Reformed Church Youth Group and LaGrange Highlands Girl Scout Troop 5119. Groups helped sort, organize, check dates, and prepare the food pantry for the next distribution night. Thank you!
Last chance to donate to the Jewel (Countryside) Turkey Bucks program! Collections will be taken through November 18th and used for our Thanksgiving Distribution this week! Thanks to all who have donated and volunteered this season.
SOME BIG CHANGES FOR THIS YEAR!
This year, instead of having red food basket tags, you will see white envelopes on some of the Christmas trees. Rather than giving out food baskets at Giving Tree, we will be offering clients a gift card, based on the size of their household, to purchase food. We are making this change for a few reasons:
• Client Choice: Many of us have dietary or allergy restrictions and we all have food preferences! We recently switched our food pantry from pre-packed bags to client choice. This model honors and respects the dignity and unique needs of each household and we want to continue this model with our Christmas food program.
• Transparency and Fairness: Every year we received such generous donations for food baskets! However, the food baskets meant that each household got very different baskets. This change will create a more equitable food program.
• December Food Pantry: In previous years we closed the food pantry in December. However, now we will continue to have our doors open every Thursday night in December (except 12/27) so clients will still be able to receive food that month.
How it works:
On the trees you will find white envelopes. Each envelope lists a dollar amount. We respectfully request that you purchase cards for the exact amount listed on the card and then put the card(s) directly in the envelope. We also ask that you only purchase cards from Jewel and Walmart. Envelopes will need to be turned in by Sunday, December 9th at 12:30pm. They can be placed in the collection basket any week, dropped at the Parish Center or with the Gifts December 8-9.
Shop with Scrip Opportunity:
For your convenience this weekend St. Cletus School Shop with Scrip is available in the Narthex so you can purchase the gift cards today. This is a gift card purchasing program via the school that allows the school to get a percentage of the proceeds as a fundraiser. It does not cost you anything extra to participate. They accept cash/check.
GREEN TAGS (food pantry items): The food pantry will continue to be open during the month of December and we still have many donations that we will need! The new green tags list some of our most needed items at this time. If you enjoy purchasing food for those in need and miss the food basket program, this might be a great option for you. Items can be returned at your convenience to the bins in the Church Narthex.
PURPLE TAGS (gifts): Gifts are to be returned before/after Masses the weekend of December 8-9. Gifts will be returned to Morrissey Hall using the convenient drop off lane on Stone Ave.! There is no change to the gift program.
We recognize that change can be difficult, especially around family holiday traditions. We are looking forward to these program updates to best meet the needs of our clients. Kendall Grant, Director of Social Concerns, will be in the Narthex this weekend and next and would be happy to help answer any questions you may have. We so appreciate your dedication to this important ministry in our parish and community. Thank you!
The Giving Tree Committee
Answers to frequently asked questions can be found on the parish website: www.stcletusparish.com/socialconcerns.
For further details, you can also contact: Kendall Grant, (708)215-5418, firstname.lastname@example.org