Turning pocket change into real change

Loaves and Fishes raises funds every month to support people in need

Photo+by+Hannah+Klimas

Photo by Hannah Klimas

Between school, sports, extracurriculars, jobs and spending time with friends, it can be easy to forget to take the time to help the less fortunate. Luckily, Campus Ministry has a program that puts the needy first: Loaves and Fishes.

Loaves and Fishes is a monthly collection that coincides with Mass days. Each homeroom collects spare change and bills and sends them off to Campus Ministry, which in turn sends all the funds to a needy organization.

The collection was started by former president Fr. Corey Brost a number of years ago when he saw that others in the community had needs that were not being met. He started a weekly collection, but this was later changed to monthly.

“Collections are taken at Mass on the weekends in every Church, and so this is a way to make our community feel like we can come together and raise money for a cause that is important,” said Campus Minister Ms. Amy Northrop.

Loaves and Fishes supports a wide variety of causes, particularly those close to our community. Some organizations which the collection has recently raised funds for include the Viator House of Hospitality, the Night Ministry and a school family who lost their house to a fire.

Depending on the time of year and how much heads-up is given, Loaves and Fishes raises different amounts of money each collection. While they aim for $2,000, some collections only bring in around $500. A recent collection for the Night Ministry, which assists homeless youth, raised around $1,800.

“It’s really exciting when we count the money,” said Ms. Northrop. “Sometimes, students will donate $20 and go way above and beyond. It brings us a lot of joy to know that our community is so generous.”

Next time the Loaves and Fishes pouch comes around your homeroom, don’t just pass it on to the next person. Drop in your change from buying French fries at lunch, or maybe give up your morning Starbucks run and donate the few dollars you saved. Either way, know that you are helping out people in your community who are in need.