CEC Outreach News: September 23, 2021


September is Hunger Action Month

As Fall arrives, several agencies that help to feed the hungry are reminding everyone that we’re in the midst of a month dedicated to addressing food insecurity. September is Hunger Action Month. Howard County Executive Calvin Ball stated this week that despite the wealthy demographics in our county, one in four residents struggles to make ends meet.


Ball joined Bita Dayhoff, president of the Community Action Council of Howard County, in the aisles of the nonprofit organization’s Howard County Food Bank, for a video that can be seen on the county government’s YouTube channel. They pointed out several facts you may not know, including that the Food Bank has a garden and that it offers nutritional education.

What’s more, it partners with another nonprofit to help serve people who require gluten-free and allergy-friendly food items, which can be more costly than ordinary groceries. That organization is the S.A.F.E. Food Pantry. New and current clients can receive pre-bagged, safe food items when they check-in at the Howard County Food Bank for their monthly visits. Or there’s an alternative, thanks to a separate partnership with Columbia Community Care (CCC).


On the third Saturday of each month, S.A.F.E. distributes gluten-free and allergy-friendly food items at the CCC site at Oakland Mills Middle School (OMMS), 9540 Kilimanjaro Rd., Columbia, MD 21045. The S.A.F.E. table operates on the same timeframe as the CCC site: Volunteers and donation dropoff begins at 9 a.m.; food distribution goes from 10 a.m. to noon. If you have gluten-free or other safe foods to donate, you can bring them without making advance arrangements. Or, if you or others whom you know need these items, please come to OMMS on the next distribution day, Saturday, Oct. 23.


Collection Drive Continues to Provide Diapers, Personal Care Items for CCC

At Christ Church, members of our Racially-Aware Group of Episcopalians and the Outreach Commission ask all parishioners to support CCC by collecting diapers, baby wipes, sanitary and personal care items, and adult diapers. Please put any of these items in the yellow bin that's marked “CCC,” inside the Parish Hall. You can drop off items on weekdays whenever the church office is open, but we ask that you call the office at (410) 381-9365 ahead of time.


Help Christ Church to Go for Gold While Helping Bridges To End Homelessness

Bridges to Housing Stability once again is hosting a virtual fund-raising event to support programs that help individuals and families experiencing or at-risk of homelessness in Howard County. Bridges Executive Director Jennifer Broderick, LCSW, explains the importance of stable housing and how Chili & Challenge helps make it happen. Watch a 2-minute video.


You can support this event in three ways (the first two will help Christ Church compete for the Golden Ladle!!): 1) purchase meal tickets ($20 each), a portion of which ($12) will be donated to Bridges; 2) donate directly; and 3) participate in Bridges’ virtual silent auction online. The congregation that raises the most money through 1 & 2 above (meal ticket proceeds and/or direct donations) by Friday, October 8, will win the Golden Ladle. Two runners-up will win silver ladles (as Christ Church did in 2020, shown in this photo).


Go for the Gold and prevent homelessness by using this link to purchase meal tickets and/or donate directly:

1) Bare Bones Grill and Bar is providing three delicious chilis (beef, chicken, and vegetarian) this year with cornbread and coleslaw. Chili meals are available for purchase at the link above until Monday, October 4, 2021. All meals must be picked up curbside between 12 – 3 p.m. on Sunday, October 10th. The pickup will take place not at the restaurant but at Bridges’ office building parking lot, 9520 Berger Rd., Columbia, MD 21045.


2) If you want to donate toward Bridges’ $12,000 goal for its operations and housing programs, please do so by Friday, October 8th, through the Christ Episcopal Church link above. If you prefer to donate via check, please make it out to Bridges to Housing Stability (not to Christ Church) and note "Christ Episcopal Church/Chili & Challenge" in the memo line. You must get it to Christ Church by Wednesday, October 6th, so that we can take checks to Bridges in time to count toward our total on October 8th.


3) Bridges’ virtual silent auction is being hosted by “Charity Auctions Today” between 8 a.m. Tuesday, October 5th and 8 p.m. Sunday, October 10th. Please see the Christ Church event page on Bridges' website and future Gatherings notices for updated information.


Alternatively, you can go to Bridges’ website directly to purchase meal tickets and/or donate. If you are purchasing meals, you can click on the congregation you are supporting in an information section after saying how many meals you want. If you are donating directly, you can enter "Christ Episcopal Church/Chili & Challenge" in the donor scroll box. If you do not want it to show publicly, click on the box.


DreamBuilders are Planning a Trip to Puerto Rico in January!

DreamBuilders is in the planning stages for a trip to Puerto Rico during the week of January 9-15, 2022, to repair homes damaged by hurricanes and earthquakes. We were not able to go last year due to COVID restrictions, but in 2019, we were able to help rebuild two homes, working with our St. Bernard Project (SBP) partners. They are once again allowing volunteers to come to the island and work through them, as there are many still in need of help. If you are interested in joining our group, please contact Cathy Gold or Stacey Frith to let us know.


Donate Personal Care and Cleaning Supplies for FISH in Bin on our Breezeway

Organizers for FISH of Howard County request household cleaning supplies such as liquid dish soap, bleach, and cleanser as well as personal items such as deodorant, shampoo, and bath soaps. The bin is on the breezeway between Old Brick and the Parish Hall.

In general, if you have suggestions about ways to help the community, if you want to get involved, or if you need assistance, please email Christ Church Outreach at outreach@christchurchcolumbia.org. Your help is greatly welcomed and appreciated. Thank you.