Posts filed under: In the News

Pottstown, PA, July 1, 2019 – The Pottstown Cluster of Religious Communities (PCRC), as a Philabundance community partner, will be addressing summer hunger needs in the Greater Pottstown area by distributing approximately 180 free, nutritious Philabundance LunchBoxes weekly to kids who rely on school meals as a steady source of food when school is in session.

The LunchBox program provides free and nutritious ready-to-eat meals for kids under 18 who have lost access to school breakfast and lunch over summer vacation. At PCRC, kids will pick up LunchBoxes on Wednesdays and Thursdays between 10:30 am and 12:30 pm at 57 North Franklin Street, Pottstown, PA 19464.

“During the summer months, we serve families with kids who wonder whether they will have enough to eat. These kids visit our Outreach Center and receive a ready-to-eat meal that day. Summer should be a time for fun and growth, not hunger,” said Victoria Bumstead, PCRC Outreach Center Director.

LunchBox meals are generously sponsored by GIANT Food Stores and produced by students in Philabundance’s culinary and life skills training program, Philabundance Community Kitchen. LunchBoxes include items like wraps, milk, and produce; some meals are fresh, while others are shelf-stable, with items like barbecue chicken, fruit cups, hummus dip, and more.

About Pottstown Cluster of Religious Communities

For over 50 years, through interfaith cooperation, the Pottstown Cluster of Religious Communities (PCRC) has provided Food Security, Housing Stability, and Supportive Services and Education to address the basic needs of persons within and beyond the Greater Pottstown area. PCRC coordinates its programs and referrals to help clients improve their overall stability. For more information or to give now, call 610.970.5995, or visit pottstowncluster.org.

About Philabundance

Philabundance is the Delaware Valley’s largest hunger relief organization. For 35 years, it has focused on providing emergency food to those in need. In 2018, it relieved hunger by distributing more than 26 million pounds of food through a network of 350 member agencies. In 2019, it began partnerships with critical services providers, offering food coupled with other services to end hunger for good. Philabundance serves more than 90,000 people each week, 30 percent of whom are children, 16 percent of whom are seniors, and other clients include college students, single parents and the working class. Give now or learn more at Philabundance.org.

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GRATITUDE.

It is defined as “The quality of being thankful; readiness to show appreciation for and to return kindness.” At the Pottstown Cluster of Religious Communities (PCRC), it is with a deep and abiding sense of gratitude we present this 2018 Annual Report of Gratitude and list of supporters as a public acknowledgment of your kindness, and in appreciation for your continued support for the work we do together to improve the overall quality of life for individuals and families in our region.

You have blessed PCRC with your gifts of time, talent, and treasure, helping us help your neighbor. For that we are eternally GRATEFUL.

 

Click to view and print the PCRC 2018 Annual Report of Gratitude (pdf)
Annual Report of Gratitude
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To Stabilize Vulnerable Families and Individuals Who Are Facing Eviction

Pottstown, PA, April 19, 2019 – Pottstown Cluster of Religious Communities (PCRC) announced today that it was recently awarded a grant in the amount of $5,000 from the TD Charitable Foundation, the charitable giving arm of TD Bank, America’s Most Convenient Bank®. The grant will support the Eviction Prevention and Intervention Coalition (EPIC) pilot project designed to stabilize vulnerable families and individuals who are facing eviction by providing them with legal and social services support.

The project will include case management services, carried out by Pottstown Cluster of Religious Communities, to prevent eviction in the short term and to connect the household to community supports necessary to maintain long term housing stability. Financial assistance will also be provided to households as appropriate and necessary to prevent eviction. PCRC will support the program with a Housing Stability Coach working in conjunction with legal representation on-site at the Magisterial District Court in Norristown, PA.

The project will serve 120 households within and beyond the Greater Pottstown area during the one-year grant period. A Housing Stability Plan and a budget will be created for each eligible participating household.

“Pottstown Cluster of Religious Communities is extremely honored to receive a grant from the TD Charitable Foundation,” said Executive Director Barbara Wilhelmy. “We look forward to addressing the significant and debilitating impact that evictions have on vulnerable populations as we work to help those living in poverty prevent eviction, maintain housing stability, and find their voice within the legal system.”

This contribution supports TD’s longstanding commitment to community enrichment through The Ready Commitment, a multi-year platform that actively promotes inclusivity, economic vitality, environmental wellbeing and health, enabling people of all backgrounds to succeed in a rapidly changing world. As part of The Ready Commitment, TD targets CDN $1 billion (US $775 million) in total by 2030 towards community giving in four critical areas: Financial Security, a more Vibrant Planet, Connected Communities and Better Health. Through this platform, TD aspires to create a more inclusive tomorrow — helping people of all backgrounds feel more confident, not just about their finances, but about their ability to achieve their goals. For information, visit td.com/thereadycommitment.

 


About Pottstown Cluster of Religious Communities

For over 50 years, through interfaith cooperation, the Pottstown Cluster of Religious Communities (PCRC) has provided Food Security, Housing Stability, and Supportive Services and Education to address the basic needs of persons within and beyond the Greater Pottstown area. PCRC coordinates its programs and referrals to help clients improve their overall stability. For more information, call 610-970-5995, or visit pottstowncluster.org.

About the TD Charitable Foundation

The TD Charitable Foundation is the charitable giving arm of TD Bank, America’s Most Convenient Bank®, one of the 10 largest commercial banking organizations in the United States. Since its inception in 2002, the Foundation has distributed over $200 million and more than 19,400 grants through donations to local nonprofits from Maine to Florida. More information on the TD Charitable Foundation, including the online grant application, is available at TDBank.com

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This past June 25, U.S. Senator Bob Casey, Jr., and Dr. Val Arkoosh, Chair of the Montgomery County Board of Commissioners, along with Renee Gorski, Patrick Druhan, and PCRC’s Executive Director Barbara Wilhelmy and staff member Danielle Gadsden, participated in a SNAP benefits Roundtable panel discussion held at PCRC. This was just ahead of the 2018 Farm Bill vote in the Senate, coming a week after the House passed its partisan measure.

SNAP Roundtable

SNAP stands for Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, and is still commonly called “Food Stamps.” The program helps feed nearly 140,000 people in Berks, Chester, and Montgomery counties.

PCRC Roundtable

From The Mercury:

Montgomery County Commissioners’ Chairwoman Val Arkoosh said about 10 percent of Montgomery County’s population — about 80,000 people — suffer from “food insecurity,” meaning they do not know where their next meal is coming from and 51,000 of them are children.

Many of them “make too much money to qualify for SNAP,” but even those who do receive an average of only $123.51 per month from the program, which covers, at best, two weeks of food bills.

“As a result, parents often sacrifice their own health and nutrition to feed their children,” said Arkoosh, who is also a medical doctor. “Cutting funding in the SNAP program will be devastating to these Montco families.”

A bill now coming out of committee in the Senate “with strong bipartisan support,” would restore the SNAP program to its current level, and even add a little more money to encourage the purchase of fresh fruits and vegetables, Casey said Monday.

Calling the cuts in the House bill “draconian,” Casey said “this is wrong. This is a program that works. If you want to talk about return on investment, for every dollar you spend on SNAP, the economy gets $1.80 in return.”

“But beyond that,” said Casey, “there is the moral gravity of this issue.”

Read The Mercury’s coverage of the event here. Watch the CBS3 Philly feature below.

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Senator Bob Casey (center) with PCRC Board President Mary Ann Glocker and Executive Director Barbara Wilhelmy

Senator Bob Casey and PCRC Executive Director Barbara Wilhelmy

PCRC Executive Director Barbara Wilhelm and Senator Bob Casey discuss food issues in the PCRC Pantry

PCRC staff member Danielle Gadsden was part of the panel with Senator Casey and Commissioner Arkoosh

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