Strengthening Families. Building Communities. Reducing Poverty.

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September is a wonderful time of the year when we get to leave the summer heat behind as the air gets crisp and the leaves begin to change. We look forward to the Major League Baseball playoffs that will soon be taking place and to the football season ahead. This time of year often brings families and friends together to share their love of sports and outdoors. It is a time that grandparents pass down their love and knowledge of the game but most importantly a time where memories are made and relationships are strengthened.          Be sure to mark your calendar! September 13th is National Grandparents Day. Take this opportunity to send a card, make a phone call or plan a visit or outing with your grandparents. Don’t forget to let your grandparents know how important and special they are to you! The first day of fall, September 23rd is National Falls Prevention Awareness Day. This day sponsored by the National Council on Aging is designed to raise awareness about preventing fall-related injuries among older adults. The theme for 2015 is “Take a Stand to Prevent Falls”. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that one

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Sometimes it’s hard to hear the truth, whether it’s about yourself or someone you care about. It’s hard to keep an open mind and to not feel judged. It’s even harder when you experience an unplanned pregnancy. All kinds of thoughts run through your head: “Who should I tell? Should I tell anyone? Can I do this alone? What if I need help? Where will I go?” Oftentimes, these questions go unanswered for months-maybe because you’re in denial, or angry, or even scared. Maybe you’re struggling financially or experiencing homelessness. How can you care for a child when it seems you don’t have the resources to care for yourself? A lot of our clients face this very same situation. They can be any age, from any economic background, and of any ethnicity. Our clients are from all walks of life. But they all have the same goal. To have a healthy pregnancy and to provide the best life they can for their unborn child. Catholic Charities Diocese of Charlotte is here to help. We provide pregnancy support services to those experiencing an unplanned pregnancy. Services can include community referrals, case management support, assistance securing baby items, and emotional support. We can

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“Let’s go.”They wanted to climb the waterfall.“We only have 40 minutes before we need to head home. How about we just hang out by the stream until we go?”There was no conversation to be had. In spite of the fact that the Refugee Youth High School Program participants (14 teenagers) and three brave staff had just climbed up and down a 2,000+ foot mountain on a humid summer afternoon, many of the youth were ready for a new challenge.So they climbed and I climbed slowly behind…up several hundred feet of stairs in just 20 minutes! But it was worth the struggle. By the time “Mr. Patrick” finally reached the observation deck, the kiddos were already happily snapping selfies/group photos and generally enjoying the grandeur of the roaring water pouring over the rocks below. When the Waterfall Expedition finally returned from their sprint up and down the falls, we found the rest of the group relaxing by the stream and enjoying a hard-earned rest.Everyone was a little exhausted (staff mostly, if we are being honest…) but also content. It was Summer Break and the teenagers got to take a moment to relax from the grind of adjusting to a new life. Not
"Consider this, over the past couple of weeks we have had extremely hot weather. Catholic Charities food pantry doors continues to open each Tuesday and Thursday. Families who live under the poverty line have depended on us to help meet their need and feed their families.  Each Tuesday and Thursday, we offer a light snack to food pantry clients to help with healthy nutrition and we also provide nutritional educational materials. Families have increased their interaction and have responded positively to our snack offer. One client stated "I haven't eaten all morning, I am so thankful you guys provided this to me!" and another client said "Do you mind if I have another snack, I am so hungry and thankful that you all gave this to us. I am grateful for Catholic Charities." Throughout the daily interaction with food pantry each Tuesday and Thursday, families are tired, this summer is hotter, school is out, and more and more children come through our doors hungry. According to Feeding America, the overall food insecurity rate for children in Mecklenburg County rates at 17.5 % which is an estimated total of 165,780 children who are food insecure. Food insecurity can lead to poor diet quality, which is linked to numerous health

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World Refugee Day will be celebrated in Charlotte, NC on June 20, 2015, in conjunction with celebrations of refugees around the world. The event will be held from 10 AM-1 PM at The Green in Uptown Charlotte. The event seeks to accomplish the following mission: To increase awareness of refugees living internationally and within the Charlotte-Mecklenburg area. To celebrate the cultures and contributions of refugees living within the Charlotte-Mecklenburg area.  In order to accomplish this objective, the World Refugee Day Committee has been meeting regularly to plan, advertise and fundraise for the celebration of this event. The Committee is comprised of representatives from various local agencies that work in collaboration to address the various, and often complex needs, of the refugee community in Charlotte. The program will include musical/dance performances from various ethnic groups and tables surrounding the park where you can learn more about refugees living in Charlotte as well as the organizations that work to connect them to services and resources. The WRD Committee has also received authorization from Charlotte-Mecklenburg County officials to officially proclaim June 20th as World Refugee Day for city and county jurisdictions. If you would like to donate to the event or simply learn more
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