FFTP, San Isidro Catholic Church and Knights of Columbus Distribute Aid to South Florida Families
COCONUT CREEK, Fla. (Oct. 28, 2020) Several hundred South Florida families received essential household items last weekend, as Food For The Poor teamed up with San Isidro Catholic Church and the Knights of Columbus to help local residents affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Pompano Beach church hosted the distribution, which provided everyday necessities to parishioners and residents from northern Broward and southern Palm Beach counties.
In addition to San Isidro parishioners, goods also were provided to St. Elizabeth of Hungary Catholic Church and St. Henry Catholic Church, both in Pompano Beach; St. Clement Church in Wilton Manors; St. Vincent Catholic Church in Margate; St. Malachy Catholic Church in Tamarac; and Our Father's House, which is next door to San Isidro Catholic Church.
Fr. Wilfredo Contreras, pastor of San Isidro Catholic Church, said the goods are a blessing to families, many of whom have lost their jobs because of the pandemic.
The church, which dates back to the late 1960s, serves about 2,800 families.
"We're providing this as a community to our communities to help them in the midst of this pandemic," Fr. Contreras said. "We hope this can be a form of relief and a sign of God's blessing on them as we distribute these items."
This was the third shipping container of relief goods provided by Matthew 25: Ministries through Food For The Poor to the Archdiocese of Miami. The first two containers were distributed this past spring to Catholic Charities in Miami and St. Bonaventure Church in Davie.
Items distributed to families included shampoo, deodorant, razors and shaving cream, cleaning supplies, laundry detergent and diapers.
On Saturday, cars lined up behind the church off Hammondville Road about an hour before the 8 a.m. distribution began, a testament to the needs of the community.
Romulo Barbera, Grand Knight of the Knights of Columbus San Isidro Council, said while food banks and churches are providing food, some families can't afford to buy household items and personal hygiene products.
"The products are good quality and are very expensive for families, especially those who may be out of work because of the pandemic," Barbera said. "This is the mission of the Knights of Columbus to provide charity to people in need. We are very grateful to Food For The Poor and Matthew 25: Ministries, because without you, this would not be possible."
Maribella Maldonado, 14, was one of the many volunteers from San Isidro Catholic Church who volunteered to assist with the distribution and load goods into the trunks of cars of grateful families.
"Helping out is giving me a good feeling and made me grateful for what I do have," Maribella said. "I have been blessed and I know that there are other people who don't have anything. You know you're serving God, but also serving your neighbors."
Maria Aguilera, 17, another San Isidro volunteer, said families were happy to receive the goods.
"I know a lot of people are suffering. They've lost their jobs. But you could see the happiness in their faces," Maria said. "They didn't expect such kindness."
Food For The Poor primarily works internationally, but the charity is aware of many South Florida families facing hardship due to the pandemic.
"Partnerships with organizations such as Matthew 25: Ministries and local churches and church groups such as San Isidro Catholic Church and the Knights of Columbus enable us to provide relief to local families who are hurting," said Food For The Poor President/CEO Ed Raine. "We're so grateful for their support."
To learn more about Food For The Poor giving locally, click: www.foodforthepoor.org/sanisidro
Food For The Poor, one of the largest international relief and development organizations in the nation, does much more than feed millions of hungry children and families living in poverty primarily in 17 countries of the Caribbean and Latin America. This interdenominational Christian ministry provides emergency relief assistance, clean water, medicine, educational materials, homes, support for orphaned and abandoned children, care for the aged, skills training and micro-enterprise development assistance. For more information, please visit www.FoodForThePoor.org.
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