FFP's Operation Starfish increases compassionate giving during Lent

Coconut Creek, FL (Feb. 29, 2009) —This Lenten season Food For The Poor, the largest international relief and development organization in the Caribbean and Latin America, wants to share with you a simple way for your church, school or organization to increase the spirit of compassionate giving for those in greatest need. The Operation Starfish® program was developed by Father Martin who was inspired by author Loren Eisley’s story, “A Single Starfish,” emphasizes how we can help save one child at a time. In doing so, it inspires us to feel even closer to Christ during the Lenten season.

Operation Starfish® is designed to let families engage fully in the sacrificial spirit of Lent by giving participants both the opportunity for spiritual reflection and the chance to make daily sacrifices. The program encourages individuals to deposit 50 cents or more each day into their Operation Starfish® collection box to help the poor. At the end of Lent, when all donations are collected, combined and counted, homes for the destitute will be built.

Food For The Poor has free supplemental materials available to support Operation Starfish® activities, including special devotional calendars and children’s workbooks. Food For The Poor’s devotional calendar features a daily Gospel reading and a weekly reflection. The children’s workbook is divided into several lessons that teach children about poverty in the world, while offering activities that are fun and informative.

"Operation Starfish is a simple way to help the poor,” said Father Martin, pastor at Church of the Nativity, Burke, Va. “Everyone in the church and school family can participate – young, old, active or homebound. Each individual does something – many small sacrifices come together to make a big difference in the lives of the poor. As a result, the parish family becomes closer to God and each other. We become more generous overall."

Food For The Poor, the largest international relief and development organization in the nation and the largest charity in Florida, does much more than feed millions of the hungry poor in 17 countries of the Caribbean and Latin America. Since 1982, we have provided clean water, medicines, educational materials, homes, support for orphans and the aged, skills training and emergency relief, with more than 96 percent of all donations going directly to programs that help the poor. For more information about Food For The Poor visit www.foodforthepoor.org/operationstarfish.

Jennifer Oates
(954) 427-2222 x 6054