Lupe Ramirez, a fifth-grade teacher at Robert Frost Elementary School in Mount Prospect, wanted her class to learn a special lesson this winter. She came up with a project that would mobilize the children into giving back to other children in need, and had the children run it from start to finish.
Catholic Charities Northwest Regional Director Michael Waters came out to the classroom to teach the students about Catholic Charities services and clients. Ramirez said the students were surprised at how much need there was but energized by the idea of helping. They came up with several ideas of how to fund raise, but ended up voting to sell hot chocolate at the school’s next Holiday Market, and donate the proceeds to Catholic Charities. They received a donation of hot chocolate from Wal-Mart and a parent donated cups and napkins.
“I think it really helped bring awareness to the kids,” Ramirez said. “They were so eager to help and it felt like they were connected to the project.”
Through hot chocolate sales at the market, the students raised $91.50 to donate to Catholic Charities. They also created cards with warm messages for those who attend the Tuesday and Thursday night evening suppers at Catholic Charities. They also donated the leftover hot chocolate for guests to enjoy.
“It just warmed our hearts when we saw the donation,” said Adriana Kelly, North Regional Director at Catholic Charities.
“Teaching kids the importance of giving back at an early age is critical to making all of our communities a better place,” added Waters. “We are very grateful for Ms. Ramirez for reinforcing this lesson here in our community.”
Catholic Charities Tuesday and Thursday Evening Suppers are held at the North/Northwest Regional Services Office in Des Plaines, and are open to all those in need in the community. The suppers are an entry point for many of the other services offered by Catholic Charities. For the first time, many guests learn that there are programs to help and people who care. Whether supper guests are single adults living without shelter or families struggling to make ends meet, all are welcome to a free, nutritious meal. The regional suppers serve approximately 70 guests each night and 6,900 each year.
Catholic Charities North/Northwest Region Office is located at 1717 Rand Road in Des Plaines. The office serves the communities of: Northbrook, Glencoe, Glenview, Winnetka, Kenilworth, Wilmette, Evanston, Skokie, Morton Grove, Niles, Park Ridge, Golf, Lincolnwood, Northfield, and Rosemont. For more information about the North Region Office, please call: (847) 376-2100.
About Catholic Charities
Helping people in need for more than 99 years, Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Chicago is one of the largest private, not-for-profit social service agencies in the Midwest, annually assisting more than 1 million people in Cook and Lake counties without regard to religious, ethnic or economic background. Catholic Charities fulfills the Church’s role in the mission of charity by providing compassionate, competent, professional services that strengthen and support individuals, families and communities.