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Appeal Week 2014 Culminates with $8.88 Million Raised for 90th Annual Catholic Charities Appeal | Community Spirit

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Appeal Week 2014 Culminates with $8.88 Million Raised for 90th Annual Catholic Charities Appeal
Appeal Week 2014 Culminates with $8.88 Million Raised for  90th Annual Catholic Charities Appeal

BUFFALO, N.Y., April 15, 2014 – The Most Reverend Richard J. Malone, bishop of the Diocese of Buffalo, provided his second report on the progress of the annual Catholic Charities of Buffalo Appeal today, revealing $8,886,816.65 has been raised to date, as Catholic Charities officials marked the close of Appeal Week 2014.

Today’s total represents 82.3 percent of the final goal, which is trending slightly ahead of last year at this time when 80.2 percent of goal was reached. Funds raised for Appeal 2014 support Catholic Charities’ 70 programs and services offered across 61 sites throughout the eight-county region. The annual campaign runs through June 30 and carries a goal of $10.8 million.

During Appeal Week, which ran from April 6-13, parish volunteers and pastors across Western New York led a concerted effort to gather donations, and participated in fundraising activities in order to bring the Appeal closer to its final goal.

Bishop Malone emphasized the importance of the Appeal to the continuation of the vital, and often life-sustaining, programs Catholic Charities offers, and how funds raised will allow Catholic Charities to continue to make a difference in the lives of more than 138,000 neighbors in need – Catholics and Catholics alike.

“We remain cautiously optimistic we will be able to raise an additional $1,913,183.65 between now and June 30, the end of our fiscal year and the official close to Appeal 2014,” said Bishop Malone.

“As we journey through Holy Week, we reflect on our Lenten journey in preparation for the joyous celebration of the resurrection of our Lord, Jesus Christ, on Easter Sunday. In a similar journey through the remainder of the 2014 Appeal, we prepare for the advancement of Christ’s mission to minister to those in need. Your generosity in serving our brothers and sisters through the annual Catholic Charities Appeal is greatly appreciated,” he added.

Former client of the WIC nutrition services program, Megan Houseman, now a full-time registered dietitian with the Niagara Falls WIC office, shared her experience with Catholic Charities.

“When I was between jobs after college, with student loans to repay, and pregnant with my second child, I realized that we would probably be eligible to receive WIC,” said Houseman. “I never expected to need assistance but it certainly helped to keep our family afloat.”

In fact, she was an Air Force reservist for seven years and her husband is active duty with the Air Force, serving at the Niagara Falls airbase. In his introduction of Megan, Catholic Charities Chief Executive Officer Dennis Walczyk explained that Catholic Charities has been focused on efforts to ensure that the agency is welcoming to and meeting the needs of our region’s military members, veterans and their families.

Walczyk said, “When our largest department tracked the number of military members and veterans we were serving, we discovered a high number. Since then, collaborating with our local military organizations and increasing our staff’s sensitivity and response to the veteran and military folks living among us – many of whom struggle at times – has been the foundation of our efforts to best meet the variety of needs of our servicemen and women.”

Mike and Maureen Pratt, 2014 Appeal chairs, thanked all those involved for their generosity.  “We are very grateful to the thousands of individuals, corporations, schools and parish organizations who have been so faithful in their support of Catholic Charities' mission,” said Mike and Maureen. 

Sister Mary McCarrick, OSF, diocesan director of Catholic Charities, encouraged people who have not yet donated to step forward and help the organization reach its goal.

“We are very grateful for our current progress and the thousands of gifts this number represents,” said Sister Mary. “However, we need to keep up our pace and we need to hear from others who have not yet taken the time to respond to the need this year through a contribution or a pledge.”

Catholic Charities empowers children, families and seniors to achieve meaningful, healthy and productive lives. In all situations, it delivers support to meet immediate needs and then assess for other needs to ensure long-term success. Catholic Charities is the most comprehensive human service provider serving all eight counties of Western New York and receives the highest ratings for quality of service provided and financial health/accountability as rated by the Council on Accreditation and Charity Navigator.

For 90 years, Catholic Charities has been making a difference for people of every faith and ethnicity.

The patron of Appeal 2014 is Padre Pio.

For more information on Appeal 2014 or to make a donation, contact Catholic Charities at (716) 218-1400 or go to www.ccwny.org. Check out Catholic Charities on Facebook at www.facebook.com/ccbuffalo and on Twitter at www.twitter.com/ccbuffalo.

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