BRIDGEPORT– Three diocesan High Schools have officially joined as Catholic Relief Services (CRS )Clubs to support the official international humanitarian agency of the Catholic community in the United States. The agency alleviates suffering and provides assistance to people in need in more than 100 countries.
Immaculate High School in Danbury, Kolbe Cathedral High School in Bridgeport, and Notre Dame High School in Fairfield have all joined the CRS network of clubs. Immaculate High School led the way with 167 students signing up as club members.
Nora Ferreira Aufiero , Community Engagement Manager for Catholic Relief Services, Northeast Mid-Atlantic Region, said she was delighted by the response from the Diocese. Additionally, she said there is interest in an adult chapter of the Club and hopes to schedule a Zoom meeting with those who are interested by mid to late October.
“I believe that CRS Club can be true agents of change and an integral part of the movement to build a better world,” said Aufiero. “Young people have the power, energy and passion to drive real change, and their actions are essential to achieve our vision—God’s vision—of a world free of hunger, violence and injustice.
CRS clubs empower students to contribute in a tangible way to join in the effort to lift millions of people out of poverty while developing leadership skills they can use to continue to be changemakers into the future, she said.
Bishop Frank J. Caggiano , who was named Chairman of the international catholic relief agency in 2019, welcomed the news and said that he was proud of the students for their commitment to others and their willingness to become part of the larger CRS community.
“I am grateful to our young people for choosing to become missionary disciples who believe that in Christ we can build a more just and equitable world,” he said.
“The number of those who are impoverished and endangered is staggering. Many persons live in fear and constant anxiety. The needs of minimal sustenance, particularly water, are of paramount importance and invite us to help. CRS reaches out to our global family,” the bishop said.
The bishop said that CRS Clubs across the country are giving students the opportunity to learn about issues of global injustice and involving their school community in impactful actions such as advocacy and fundraising.
The bishop said that CRS is “a bright light for all of our brothers and sisters overseas who don’t have enough to eat or a place to sleep because of entrenched poverty. All of God’s children have the right to live in just and peaceful societies, and for more than 75 years CRS has worked toward making that a reality.”
Catholic Relief Services is the USCCB agency that provides global humanitarian assistance to those in need in two critical ways: by responding to man-made and natural disasters and providing direct assistance to those in need. Its mission seeks effective ways by which every human person can be assisted to realize his or her full human integral development in an environment that is peaceful and sustainable.
Founded in 1943 by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, the agency provides assistance to 130 million people in more than 100 countries and territories in Africa, Asia, Latin America, the Middle East and Eastern Europe.
For more information on student and adult CRs clubs, contact Nora Ferreira Aufiero, Community Engagement Manager | Catholic Relief Services, Northeast Mid-Atlantic Region, Cell: 631-897-9129 | crs.org | crsespanol.org or visit the website at: https://www.crs.org/sites/default/files/crs-club-action-calendar-20-21.pdf
Photo: Members of the new CRS Club at Notre Dame High School in Fairfield