TOLEDO, OH—With your help, Helping Hands of St. Louis will make the holidays much brighter for many who would otherwise go without. We ask all donated items be dropped off by 3 p.m., Tuesday, Dec. 19 to Helping Hands of St. Louis, 443 Sixth Street, Toledo, OH, so they can be sorted and ready to go for these December events.
Upwards of 200 Christmas Food Baskets are being prepared for needy families, with enough food for three or four meals. Donated items needed include: turkeys, boneless hams, onions, instant mashed potatoes, stuffing mix, canned gravy, canned sweet potatoes, canned fruit, and other side dishes, butter, eggs, oil, dessert mixes, apples, and oranges.
The Helping Hands of St. Louis Elves are also collecting candy canes, new unwrapped toys for kids 12 and under, coats, mittens, gloves, hats, boots, shoes, socks and underwear. New gift items for the kids to pick from Santa’s Workshop to give as gifts to Mom and Dad are also welcomed. These items will be handed out at the annual Children’s Christmas Party, Tues., Dec. 19.
The Most Reverend Daniel E. Thomas, Bishop of the Diocese of Toledo, will join volunteers at Helping Hands of St. Louis in serving the festive annual Christmas Meal, Thurs., Dec. 21. Questions? Contact Sue Shrewsbery at 419.619.0613 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
OREGON, OH—The Oregon Meijer’s “Simply Give” program is once again supporting Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Toledo’s Helping Hands of St. Louis ministry! Mark your calendars! The Holiday Campaign runs now through Sat., Dec. 30, 2017.
When you purchase $10 Simply Give donation cards at the Oregon Meijer, located at 1725 S. Wheeling Street, Oregon, OH, Meijer will match every customer’s $10 Simply Give donation.
Your generous donations will enable us to purchase food items for our Helping Hands Pantry and hot-meal programs, enabling us to provide for thousands of hungry men, women and children in Norhtwest Ohio.
MANY THANKS for your continued support Meijer and those who support this program!
TOLEDO, OH—Join us for Helping Hands of St. Louis Annual Coat Giveaway on Saturday, Oct. 7, from 9 a.m. to Noon, 443 Sixth Street, Toledo, OH. Volunteers are always welcomed to assist our guests!
Last year nearly 500 winter coats were given away to men, women and children visiting our Helping Hands Clothing Center, as well as given winter boots, hats, and gloves, when available.
Gently used winter boots, especially men’s sizes 10 and up; children’s boots; and warm coats, hats and gloves are needed throughout the fall and winter months. Make plans to drop them off next week at Helping Hands of St. Louis.
Thank you and God Bless!
OREGON, OH—Now, through Sat., Sept. 16, is your last chance to purchase $10 Simply Give donation cards at Meijer in support of Helping Hands of St. Louis. Only cards purchased at the Meijer on 1725 S. Wheeling Street, in Oregon, OH, will support this Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Toledo ministry.
MANY THANKS for your continued support! Donations in increments of $10 will be loaded onto gift cards which will be given to Helping Hands to purchase purchase food items for the food pantry and on-site hot meal program. Every penny goes towards food purchases for Helping Hands of St. Louis food programs!
In addition to in store donations, Meijer will donate $1 million to the 2017 Simply Give program which will be dispersed to food pantries after the Fall 2017 campaign ends Sat., Sept. 16, 2017. Thank you Meijer and all who support this program!
Instead of determining what food to donate to food pantry partners, the Simply Give program allows them the flexibility to choose the grocery items best suited for the families they serve in their communities, including baby food, formula, diapers and wipes.
For more information contact Sue Shrewsbery or Gabriel Skiver at Helping Hands of St. Louis at 419.691.0613. For more info on Meijer’s Simply Give Campaign go to http://meijercommunity.com/commu…/hunger-relief/simply-give/
MANY THANKS for your continued support of Helping Hands of St. Louis, a ministry of Catholic Charities Diocese of Toledo!
BEDFORD HILLS—Looking for a great way to give back and help others this summer? Join us Saturday, July 29, for our 14th Annual Golf Scramble Outing benefiting Helping Hands of St. Louis, at Bedford Hills Golf Course, in Temperance, MI!
Our 4-person Scramble includes: 18 holes of golf, a golf cart, hot dog at the turn, beverage tickets, New York Strip Steak and Chicken dinner at completion of play, raffles and prizes. And the winning team’s names will be engraved on a trophy permanently displayed at Helping Hands of St. Louis, 443 Sixth St., Toledo, OH.
Early Bird Registration is $80 per person if received by July 18. The registration fee from July 19-24 is $90 per person. To register or for more information on becoming an event sponsor, please contact Sue Shrewsbery at 419-691-0613, ext. 2.
Kyla, a single, stay-at-home mother of three, can be seen sporadically around Helping Hands with a big smile on her face and her children nearby.
She’s not a stranger, and the faces of volunteers and staff members are not unfamiliar.
“In a way, I guess you can say I consider them family,” Kyla says about the people who have helped her over the years.
Kyla started coming to Helping Hands of St. Louis after she lost her job due to her pregnancy. In an effort to get back on her feet, Kyla moved in with her mother. Her search for a job has not been easy.
With goals to go back to school and one day become a Certified Nursing Assistant, Kyla says she appreciates all the help she has received from Helping Hands.
“The soup kitchen is nice because I don’t have to worry about making them [her children] lunch at home. I can just bring them down here, and we can eat lunch as a family. It helps with the cost of food as well.”
The staff have worked hard to help Kyla when she comes to the center for help.
“When she comes, we try to help her with pampers and baby milk,” says Vanessa, Helping Hands Meal and Volunteer Coordinator.
“Sometimes I’ll give her a little food just to keep her going until she gets her food stamps.”
“Ms. V (Vanessa), Paul and Sue, they all go out of their way. The three of them go out of their way, and that makes me feel good,” Kyla says.
Kyla’s children, ages 2, 3 and 4, all enjoy coming to Helping Hands as well.
“They like coming down here because they get to get out of the house and socialize with others. Everyone here loves my kids, and my kids get to come out and see people.”
“I would like to say thank you to the people who make this possible,” she says with a smile.
“Their generosity tells me that there are still good people out here willing to help.”
Bishop Daniel E. Thomas and volunteers from several area churches served a Christmas meal to 370 people at Helping Hands of St. Louis on December 23.
Bishop Thomas read the account of Christ’s birth from Luke’s Gospel before blessing the food. Guests were invited to sit down while volunteers served them a meal of ham, mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes, corn and desserts.
“It means a lot,” said Judy as her three-year-old daughter Hailey enjoyed a large spoonful of mashed potatoes. Judy said her family sometimes needs help with food, and she is grateful for what is offered at Helping Hands.
Mr. Jones is another guest who comes on a regular basis for lunches. He plays piano for worship at his church and said his faith is helping him through hard times. “No one is going to be perfect, but we strive to be better … that’s why God sent Jesus and why He is the reason for the season.”
Mr. Jones appreciates the food and fellowship he finds at Helping Hands, describing the program as “God’s love being shared.”
The daily meals could not be possible without the help of dedicated volunteers. Cheryl Sheffer, her son, John, and his children were all on hand to help serve the Christmas meal. Both Cheryl and John volunteer at Helping Hands on a regular basis with their churches.
“I love these people,” Cheryl said. “I always feel good after I’m here. I am dead tired when I leave, but it’s a good tired.”
“When you live in the suburbs, you tend to get comfortable with your life,” John added. “It’s good to be here with the people and share their burdens.”
In interviews with WNWO and WTOL, Bishop Thomas said he wanted to be part of serving the Christmas meal at Helping Hands because Jesus came as a poor infant in a stable. As much as the poor need food and drink, what they need is the joy that comes from Jesus, he said.
Click here to learn more about Helping Hands of St. Louis.
The hands at Helping Hands were busy as volunteers served Thanksgiving lunch to 500 people in need of a meal for the holidays. Lunch included turkey, cranberry sauce, mashed potatoes and gravy, candied yams, dressing, mixed vegetables and dessert.
The occasion brought hope to David and his nephew Shaun who were first time visitors to Helping Hands. The holiday lunch was their first holiday meal after losing their landscaping business, income and car over the summer.
“When we walked in today, we were amazed at how many people who are in the same position as we are,” says David.
“We had no food and my neighbor told us about this place. Thank You. We never thought we would be in this position. We truly would not be here if we didn’t have this option.”
For many Helping Hands clients, lunch was more than just another meal. This was their opportunity to spend the holidays with people they called family.
“We are very thankful for this place,” says Rhonda, Jodi and Dino all who are not related but have formed close relationships since coming to Helping Hands over the years. “This is our family right here,” says Dino.
“I think that Thanksgiving lunch is a great thing that they’re doing,” says Angel. “It give people a hot meal to eat on cold days.”
“I come because I like this place, and I like the people. There are a lot of good reasons for coming to here. Not just the food, it’s the people. There are good people who are here to help,” she adds.
“It gives you a chance to stretch your food at home,” says Dennis, a regular to Helping Hands. “When you run out of food at home, you can come here to get a meal.”
Today, hundreds of Toledo residents lined up for a serving of Little Caesars pizza at Helping Hands of St. Louis. The pizza was prepared and cooked inside a semi-truck called the “Little Caesars Love Kitchen,” which was parked outside the center’s soup kitchen doors.
The Little Caesars Love Kitchen is a pizza kitchen on wheels that “travels across the continental United States and Canada meeting the needs of the hungry, the homeless and disaster survivors,” according to the company’s website. Employees from Little Caesars Pizza helped prepare and cook pizzas for an estimated 300 guests. All food and services were donated by Little Caesars Pizza.
After the pizzas were baked inside the truck’s kitchen, they were delivered to the Helping Hands’ kitchen and served to a long line of excited people. The clients at Helping Hands loved every slice. Waves of appreciations and thank yous could be heard from satisfied individuals within the dining hall.
“It’s a really good thing that they did here today,” said one Helping Hands regular. “Everything was really good.”
Lions and tigers and bears, oh my! Over seventy children, parents and volunteers attended the Halloween Party at Helping Hands of St. Louis. Adding their own spin to trick or treating, people throughout the East Toledo community had a great time dressing up in costumes and getting together for the event. Candy, graciously donated by community members, was passed around as the sounds of children laughing could be heard throughout the center. There were arts and crafts activities, food, face painting and a huge inflatable green Frankenstein for families to take pictures and create memories.