food4families

Supreme Featured Family Activities Program

 

The Knights of Columbus is committed to ending hunger in local communities by asking local Councils (including Assemblies, Squire Circles, and Chapters) to participate in the Order-wide Food for Families Program.

Hunger is not just a Third-World problem.  In each of our communities there are people going with little or no food on a daily basis.  Each year in many Councils, we have Brother Knights who for some reason experience difficult financial challenges resulting in food shortages for their families.

The Knights of Columbus is in a unique position to combat hunger in our parishes and communities.  Since 2012, the Knights of Columbus has donated over $8.5 million and 14.7 million pounds of food to local food pantries, community food banks, shelters, and soup kitchens.

As we begin the 2017/2018 Columbian year, I would like to thank all Brother Knights who commit to help feed the hungry in your area.  One thing has become apparent through my involvement in the Food for Families program and that is that many Brother Knights and their Councils are feeding our hungry neighbors, yet much of their work goes unreported through our Knights of Columbus organization.  When we report our local program activities, we have the opportunity to mentor others, and at the same time learn from their successes.  It is my goal this year as Chairman, Food for Families, to collect success stories from our Councils throughout California and to share that information monthly to all Brother Knights.  Of course this requires your input for me to do that.

To encourage local Knights of Columbus councils to participate in this worthwhile program, the Supreme Council offers financial rebates to Councils, Assemblies, or Squires Circles that donate food or money.  For Councils or Assemblies, the Supreme Council will refund $100 for every $500 donated, or for every 1,000 pounds of food that a Council contributes to a parish food pantry, community food bank, or soup kitchen – up to a maximum of $500 per Council/Assembly per fraternal year.  Circles will receive a refund from the Supreme Council of $20 for every $100 donated, or every 200 pounds of food that is contributed – up to a maximum refund of $100 per Circle per fraternal year.  Reported contributions of food and/or monetary donations should be cumulative for the fraternal year and there is no need to send in a refund request every time a contribution is made.  However, to be eligible for the rebate, the cumulative total of contributions of food/money needs to reach a minimum of $500 or 1,000 pounds of food for Councils or Assemblies, and a minimum of $100 or 200 pounds of food for Circles.

In addition, the Supreme Council recognizes that participating in this program can be time consuming for the local Council.  Should a Council choose to participate in this program, this will fulfill all four of the Family Activity requirements for the Columbian Award.

In order to qualify as fulfilling all four requirements, the Council must collect and donate a minimum of 1,000 pounds of food and council members must contribute a minimum of 100 man-hours in the program.

 

Reporting

FOOD FOR FAMILIES REPORT FORMS should be submitted to Supreme anytime between July 1, 2017 and June 30, 2018 as long as your Council or Assembly has donated the minimum of 1000 lbs. of food and/or a $1000 donation.  Please submit forms totaling number of pounds donated, whether you attain the target goals or not by June 30, 2017.  Timely reporting by Councils, Assemblies, and/or Squire Circles will ensure that Supreme can continue to maintain an accurate count of pounds donated by California.  Please outline the details of your Food for Families program on your Columbian Award Application (Due by June 30, 2018).

Participating Councils/Assemblies/Circles can qualify to receive an attractive plaque by reporting activity in the program on the Food for Families Reimbursement Program Form (#10057) to the Supreme Council.

Forms can sent electronically to Natalina Mazzucco at Natalina.Mazzucco@Kofc.org

 

Forms may also be sent by U.S. Mail with copies to:

Knights of Columbus                          Knights of Columbus California State Council
Natalina Mazzucco                             Food for Families Report Forms
1 Columbus Plaza                               c/o John Carney
New Haven, CT 06510                       15808 Arrow Blvd., Suite A
Fontana, CA 92335

 


Action Steps

  • Meet as a Council, discuss the needs in your parish and community, and establish a commitment to run a Food for Families
  • With this commitment in place, assign a Council Program Chairman, Food for Families.
  • Recruit Councils members to support the needs of your community.
  • Draft an Operating Plan, Food for Families Program that the Council is able to support. Do not over commit which may lead to failure and discouragement.
  • Based on the needs of your parish or local community, contact your local parish food pantry, community food bank, shelters, or soup kitchen to ensure they will be able to receive food donations and inquire if they have any specific needs.
  • Obtain permission from the appropriate person (pastor, business owner(s), etc.) to set up the food drive at the church or store and to display posters. There are many creative programs developed by Brother Knights throughout California.  Please be willing to share your operating plans with your Brother Knights.
  • Ask nearby retail stores for empty boxes so there is a place to store donations.
  • If the council is conducting the Food Drive at the parish, have flyers available for distribution or placed in the pews announcing the details of the Food Drive.
  • Ask the pastor for permission to make an announcement before or after Mass about the Food Drive.
  • Be sure to include a written announcement in the parish bulletin.
  • For monetary donations, be sure to have a secure receptacle in the collection area for cash and checks.

For additional information on the Food for Families Program, please contact your State Food for Families Representatives (listed below), or Supreme Council contact Natalina Mazzucco at (203) 752-4402.

Isaias Hernandez, Northern California Committeeman
Carlos Cuellar, Southern California Committeeman
John K. Carney
Food for Families Program
California State Chairman
programs@californiaknights.org