Published November 8, 2007
A dozen Atlanta area nonprofits with a focus on anti-poverty projects received grants in 2006 from the annual fundraising for the Catholic Campaign for Human Development.
Thanks to donations from people in the pews, organizations like the local branch of the 9 to 5 National Association of Working Women could offer job-related workshops for low-wage women. And Qaran Radion, the Somali community radio station, could take to the air to offer to Somali and Somali Bantu refugees advice on employment, ESL classes, health issues. And the Adair Park Neighborhood Resource Center could keep open a computer lab for young people to build computer know-how.
Proceeds from a special collection allow the Catholic Campaign for Human Development in the Atlanta Archdiocese to provide community grants to nonprofits that attack the root causes of poverty. The collection this year is set for the weekend of Nov. 17-18.
From the collection, $1 out of every $4 stays in Atlanta. In 2006, $39,000 was distributed to 12 nonprofits.
The grants are awarded to organizations committed to breaking the cycle of poverty. The organizations work on a variety of issues, from teaching formerly homeless people financial skills and providing affordable childcare to training prison ministers.
Each project must match the principles of Catholic social teaching and develop leadership skills for low-income people. The grants are a maximum of $4,000.
At the same time another share of the money helped parishes with relationship-building projects and rewarded young artists and writers.
Six parishes received mini-grants of $1,000. The mini-grants focus on developing relationships between people from different cultures in the parish and work together on shared projects. The six parishes to receive mini-grants were Sacred Heart in Atlanta, St. Francis of Assisi in Blairsville, St. Brigid in Alpharetta, Our Lady of Lourdes in Atlanta, St. John the Evangelist in Hapeville, and St. Thomas Aquinas in Alpharetta.
The collected money does more. Proceeds also rewarded winners of art and literature contests that make students aware of the Catholic perspective on fighting poverty.
The winner for literature was Kyle Brown, of St. Marguerite D’Youville Church in Lawrenceville, for the composition of a poem titled “The People under the Bridge.” Jacob Albretton, Kelsey Simmons, Malcom Smith and Zoie Taylor, students at St. Peter Claver Regional School, were recognized for the visual arts award.
To find out more about the local Catholic Campaign for Human Development, visit www.catholiccharitiesatlanta.org/programs/psjm.htm.