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Local Social Justice Groups to Benefit from Annual Archdiocesan Collection

Chicago, IL (September 8, 2008) - Francis Cardinal George, O.M.I., Archbishop of Chicago, will announce a record $520,000 in Catholic Campaign for Human Development (CCHD) grant money to twenty-one social justice groups at 5:30 p.m., Thursday, September 11, at Old St. Mary’s Church, 1500 S. Michigan Ave., Chicago.

Most Rev. Francis J. Kane, Auxiliary Bishop of Chicago, and Ralph McCloud, CCHD National Director, will join Cardinal George at the event. The Cardinal is expected to recognize the generosity of Chicago-area Catholics who responded to the 2007 CCHD collection in which ninety-five percent of Archdiocesan parishes participated.

The 2008 CCHD collection will take place in parishes across Cook and Lake counties on November 22 and 23. This year’s CCHD grant money, raised by the 2007 CCHD collection, will be directed toward groups and organizations with missions devoted to housing, violence prevention, seniors, immigrants, people with disabilities and worker’s issues. The Cardinal’s announcement highlights the church’s ongoing social justice efforts to provide direct change to Chicago-area citizens through organizations that work to improve neighborhoods.

The event’s co-emcees will be Terri Hemmert, WXRT 93.1 FM radio host, and Enrique Rodriguez, Univision/WGBO-TV Ch. 66 news anchor. Representatives from selected groups will address attendees on how CCHD funds allow organizations to reach goals for social justice in their communities. The evening’s entertainment will be provided by the Target Area Development Corporation Gospel Choir and the artistic performance of a Mexican youth dance troop.

“CCHD has been crucial for providing resources to our efforts to reduce violence in neighborhoods in southwest Chicago,” says Jeff Barttow, Executive Director of the South West Organizing Project, a 12-year old multi-issue organization made up of 28 member institutions.

“Funding from the CCHD allows us to organize older citizens to pursue changes in public policies and the behavior of large public institutions,” notes Todd Dietterle, Director of Civic Action, for the Community Renewal Society, a 13-year old organization that works with seniors. “Our leaders have been involved in successful efforts to lower prescription drug prices and remove barriers to employment.”

The Catholic Campaign for Human Development is the domestic anti-poverty, social justice program of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops. Its mission is to address the root causes of poverty in America through promotion and support of community-controlled, self-help organizations and transformative education.

The following Chicago-based organizations (unless noted otherwise)
will be in attendance to receive their share of the $520,000 grant money
from the Catholic Campaign for Human Development (CCHD):

  • Brighton Park Neighborhood Council, $20,000 for education issues
  • Centro Communitario Juan Diego, $25,000 for economic development
  • Centro Trabajadores Unidos, $5,000 in technical assistance
  • Chicago Worker’s Collaborative, $50,000 for workers’ issues
  • Community Organizing for Family Issues (COFI), $35,000 for education issues
  • Community Renewal Society, $15,000 for seniors’ issues
  • Illinois Hunger Coalition, $10,000 for immigrant issues
  • Inner-City Muslim Action Network, $20,000 for violence prevention
  • Interfaith Leadership Project, Cicero, $30,000 for immigrant issues
  • Korean American Resource & Cultural Center, $15,000 for workers’ issues
  • Lake County United, Waukegan, $40,000 for housing issues
  • Lakeview Action Coalition, $15,000 for housing issues
  • Latino Union of Chicago, $20,000 for workers’ issues
  • Little Village Environmental Justice, $35,000 for environment issues
  • Logan Square Neighborhood Association, $40,000 for housing issues
  • Northwest Neighborhood Federation, $35,000 for violence prevention issues
  • Progress Center for Independent Living, Forest Park, $20,000 for disability issues
  • San Lucas Workers Center, $15,000 for workers’ issues
  • South Suburban Action Conference, Harvey, $10,000 for immigration/housing issues
  • Southwest Organizing Project, $35,000 for violence prevention issues
  • TARGET Area Development Corporation, $30,000 for violence prevention issues

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