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Wednesday, May 29, 2024

Where to give and receive help during the Coronavirus

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Suzanne Hammons
Suzanne Hammonshttp://dioceseofgallup.org
Suzanne Hammons is the editor of the Voice of the Southwest and the media coordinator for the Diocese of Gallup. A graduate of Benedictine College in Kansas, she joined the Diocesan staff in 2012.
Society of St. Vincent de Paul, White Mountain Area AZ

Needs: Volunteers to help sort and manage items at the thrift store.

In Pinetop, AZ, the SVDP operates an agency that serves the residents of Navajo County, including the communities of Concho, Heber, Cibecue, and Show Low.
Maria Fabris, who assists with the Pinetop society, has noticed a decrease in clients since March, but believes the demand has gone down due to lockdowns on the Navajo reservation, where a majority of clients travel from.

“We help people with utilities – if they’re past due – with eviction notices, gas vouchers, [and] in the winter we provide wood,” Fabris said. The Pinetop SVDP also provides clients with household items.

Anyone applying for help must be a resident of Navajo County for the past 90 days and have ID.
Contact: 928-367-2029 or email [email protected]

Catholic Charities

Needs: Monetary donations, non-perishable food items, men’s clothing.

The five Catholic Charities agencies throughout the Diocese of Gallup provide a range of services to anyone in need. According to Vicki Trujillo, the executive director who oversees all five diocesan entities, demand for services has increased with the onset of the Coronavirus pandemic. Although the agencies’ thrift stores and hot meal programs are currently closed, Catholic Charities is still able to assist with food, clothing and hygiene items for the homeless, aid with rent and utilities for low income families, and blankets, books and toys for the families of COVID-19 patients in Gallup.

Contact: 505-722-0999 or visit facebook.com/catholiccharitiesofgallup

The services offered at other agencies in the diocese include:

Farmington: Immigration services by phone and teleconferencing, food boxes, and transitional housing. The breakfast program is closed during the pandemic. Contact: 505-325-3734.

Grants: Behavioral health through telemedicine. Due to issues with rural internet services, some patients are unable to call in. This service is vital, Trujillo says, because “a lot of people are isolated, they have no one to talk to, they’re missing family, they’re missing friends.”

White Mountain: Food pantry is open and operating thanks to a partnership with a large food bank in Phoenix and funding from Amazon. Contact: 928-367-2244 and facebook.com/WhiteMountainCatholicCharities

Holbrook: To-go lunches available, and food boxes are provided to local Covid-19 patients. Contact: 928-524-9720

Food Banks and Pantries

St. Anne Mission Food Bank

The food bank, which serves the communities at Klagetoh and Ganado, AZ, is currently handling the coronavirus well. According to Br. Charles Schilling, many of the supporters and friends of the mission from across the nation have been very generous, allowing the mission’s food pantry to prepare food boxes for the needy. Br. Schilling estimates the mission has provided over 100 food boxes since March. While the mission is currently unable to undertake its normal summer service projects, Br. Schilling expresses his gratitude for the support that has enabled food distribution to continue.

“People have been very generous, and we’re doing okay,” he said. “The three religious here are keeping community and praying for everyone.” Contact: 928-652-3265 or visit klagetoh.org

Our Lady of the Assumption Food Pantry, Overgaard

Needs: canned meats, soups and sauces, dried beans and rice, hot and cold cereal, instant potatoes

The parish in Overgaard, AZ has seen demand increase with during the Coronavirus pandemic, posted in its bulletin: “We have been very busy the last two months and are getting low.” Anyone wishing to drop off a donation can stop by the parish office during open hours or leave donations outside the door if the parish is closed. Contact: 928-535-5329

Little Sisters of the Poor

Needs: Disposable dishes and flatware, food items (perishable and non-perishable), monetary donations, care packages and cards or letters for the elderly residents

Villa Guadalupe, the home for elderly poor in Gallup, NM has lost several residents to COVID-19, according to an update released by Mother Sarah Maria. On May 18, 2020 she wrote: “Villa Guadalupe has become one of the hardest hit among the Little Sisters’ 24 U.S. houses. Although this is certainly not a distinction we would have ever wished upon ourselves, we are consoled to know that it has brought us an abundance of prayerful support from our other Homes and many other people.”

Many employees and sisters also tested positive for the virus or displayed symptoms, but the home has received help from various local and governmental agencies in enacting protective measures and bringing in temporary medical workers.

“We are grateful beyond words for the prayers of so many people and the donations of all sorts that keep arriving at our doorstep,” Mother Sarah wrote. “Thank you so much! Please know that we pray for all of you each day.” Contact: 505-863-6894 or visit littlesistersofthepoorgallup.org

Pregnancy Centers

Grace Place Pregnancy Center

Needs: financial donations, size 5 and 6 diapers, brand-new cribs or car seats (can’t be used because of liability)

Grace Place serves expectant and current mothers and families in San Juan County with a range of services including pregnancy testing, ultrasounds, parenting classes, men’s groups, and post-abortive support and healing groups. The center also offers an “earn while you learn” program, in which expecting parents or parents of children ages 0-2 earn points from taking classes and can use those points to purchase diapers, maternity and children’s’ clothing, cribs and car seats.

Grace Place, as a 100% pro-life agency, does not refer for or support abortions and tries to present women with alternative options, but Executive Director Heather Faverino has heard many of the women express fears about quality of life during a pandemic and recession.

“It’s the economy, jobs, the thinking of ‘I can’t bring a baby into this world with all this going on’”, Faverino said. By providing counseling, baby supplies and support, Grace Place strives to alleviate fears about choosing life for children. Contact: 505-327-4747 or visit graceplacecenter.org

Living Hope Pregnancy Center

Needs: Monetary donations, diapers, baby wipes, gently used or new baby items and volunteers

Living Hope serves the communities of the White Mountain area in Arizona through parenting classes, baby necessities, and mentorship programs for men. While the Coronavirus has put a temporary stop to in-person parenting classes, the center is able to conduct classes online. The center also had to temporarily close its thrift store – a large source of income – and hold a virtual annual fundraiser.

According to Keri Brewer, VP of Operations in the White Mountain area, demand for the services the center provides rose at the beginning of the pandemic and has remained steady.

“Our main purpose is fighting for life. We really come around and surround families as a whole, to help them thrive and not just survive. We surround women and families that are in a crisis situation and we help them with material goods as well as emotional support,” Brewer said. Contact: 928-537-9032, or visit livinghopecenters.org

Are you in need of help, or would you like to give back in some way to your local community? Contact any of these organizations or call our diocese at 505-863-4406 and we’ll be happy to help!


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