December, 2022 – Due to our generous supporters, fantastic staff and wonderful clients- we had a remarkable Christmas season here at Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Newark.
Help-A-Family at Christmas came to a wrap with 883 people receiving gifts through CCAN’s Emergency Food and Nutrition Network. We had over 40 new and repeat donor teams organize a few hundred participants to contribute to the program this year.
Holiday Express provided two parties for the residents of our housing programs. Over 200 clients attended: guests were treated to an evening of food, music, décor, face painting and fun! The event was facilitated by dozens of Holiday Express volunteers. Holiday Express is a non-profit organization founded by Tim McLoone (musician and restaurateur) that delivers music, food, gifts, financial support and friendship to those with the greatest need for the gift of human kindness during the holiday season and throughout the year.
We were blown away by the kindness of those who donated all sorts of goodies for the clients of our agency. Goya Foods distributed gifts at our homeless shelters and sensory-friendly items were given from the Morgan Marie Michael Foundation for all students at our Mount Carmel Guild Academy. Thank you so much to the Salvation Army and Bianca F.L.O.W.E.R.S Inc, Caldwell College, Turtle Back Zoo, Sobel & Co, NY Life and Merck. You brought the gift of Christmas joy to so many through your generous donations.
Santa Claus came to town! When friend of the agency, Frank “Doc” Schupp, Director of Veterans Outreach for The New Jersey Veterans Network reached out to Iris Mercado, Case Manager for Supportive Services for Veteran Families, saying they were looking to help a family in need this holiday season, Iris knew just who to call. She reached out to a family we assisted this summer in moving their way out of a homeless shelter into permanent housing. The mom was delighted – her two children quickly drafted their lists to Santa; her son proudly sharing they had moved into their new home. Santa and his elves delivered their presents, placing them under the tree, spreading true Christmas joy.
Lastly, we had a ball celebrating the season at our agency Christmas party. The year’s theme was “Pajama Party” and everyone had a great time dancing and sipping hot coco in their Christmas jammies. The best part- providing the staff at CCAN with a well-deserved evening of fun.