Thanks to the many individuals, companies, businesses, organizations, and groups for their tireless efforts in making the 2021 Christmas Cares, Unions Share Program successful for our families.
The pandemic was still very much part of our lives this year, but untouched by the continuing pandemic was the importance and character of the event. The financial impact of this pandemic has continued to increase food insecurity across Franklin County. For the second year, we were able to expand the program’s footprint to serve families across Franklin County and provide food for approximately 2,300 families. That’s more than 9,400 people. Each family received over 100 pounds of food to sustain them through the holidays.
Watch our 2021 Christmas Cares Video
It takes a village
This wouldn’t have been possible without the generous support of St. Stephen’s Community House’s dedicated volunteers, the Central Ohio Labor Council and donors like Molina Healthcare of Ohio, Columbia Gas/NiSource Foundation, Columbus City Council, Big Lots Foundation, and so many others. We are so grateful.
As well as our food partners, Kroger, Meijer, Giant Eagle, Mid-Ohio Food Collective, Bellisio Foods, and Sugar Creek Packing.
We are also thankful for new partnerships with The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, who through their food distribution arm, donated a full semi-truck containing, pancake mix, meat and dairy items, mashed potato mix, and so much more.
“As we celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ and think about His life of service to others, it seems fitting for us to join with others to help and serve those in need,” said President Gary Madden, Stake President of the Columbus Ohio South Stake of the Church of Jesus Christ. “The first two commandments are to love God and to love our neighbors. This donation gives us the opportunity to do both – to show love for God and to open our hearts in an expression of love and charity to others.”
Getting out the message
St. Stephen’s Community House is also thankful to our friends at NBC 4, ABC 6/Fox 28, the United Way of Central Ohio, Rick Ricart, and the Ricart Automotive Group. As well as Besa, Parichute, Jeni Britton of Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams, Frankart Film, and Josh Williams of the Columbus Crew. For amplifying our Christmas Cares, Unions Share message and getting out the need for volunteers and support!
Good news travels far
The Christmas spirit even reached north to Toledo, OH where Marcia Herman learned about Christmas Cares, Unions Share from a family member. As an avid scrap booker and card making-enthusiast, she made over 2,000 Christmas cards by hand to be passed out to families this year.
“As much as I would’ve loved to come and help this year, this was my way of providing a little bit of Christmas joy.”
When asked if she was looking to make cards again in 2022, Mrs. Herman said, “Definitely!”
In this challenging year, witnessing our community once again come together to ensure families have full bellies and hearts this holiday season was a blessing. This is also a stark reminder that hunger doesn’t stop after the holidays. We must, as a community, continue this effort to help our neighbors in need. You can donate or sign up for year-round volunteer shift by visiting our Volunteer United page
We would like to acknowledge the following for this year’s support and contributions:
Central Ohio Labor Council, AFL-CIO
American Labor Federation
BCTGM Bakers Local 57
Bishop Watterson High School
Central Ohio Labor Council Retirees
Columbus City Council
Columbus Firefighters 67
Columbus Teamsters Retirees
Stephen’s Community House Staff
Dublin Montessori Academy
Gateway Self Storage
George J Igel & Co.
Iron Workers 172
Knights of Columbus 3727
Mid-Ohio Food Collective
NiSource Columbia Gas
Our Lady of Peace Scout Troop 169
Painters and Allied Trades 1275
The Homer Cordell Family
Patrick & Maggie Turner
PNC Financial Services
Plumbers and Pipefitters 189
Sheet Metal Workers 24
Brigid of Kildare
St. Francis DeSales High School
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
United Steel Workers
United Way of Central Ohio
WCMH – NBC4
R.C. Truck Lines