McGivney virtual fundraiser shows great generosity

BRIDGEPORT—The COVID-19 pandemic isn’t pressing pause on people’s generosity, as many tuned-in to the McGivney Community Center’s virtual fundraiser “The Passport to Come and Grow.”

The fundraiser took place to raise support for McGivney’s after school and summer camp programs.

DJ Allan Lamberti from WEBE 108 was the emcee for the evening, providing a fun and interactive environment. Viewers enjoyed trivia, and recipes for food and drink from around the world.

Those who tuned-in were able to donate by texting their desired amount to a number provided, and donations streamed in throughout the live-stream.

Witnesses to the McGivney Center’s success spoke about the truth behind the center’s tagline: “Kids at McGivney don’t come and go, they come and grow.”

“The McGivney Center is not only a place for my child to learn and grow but it also provides job stability,” said Leslie Carter, a McGivney family member who explained that her family is benefitting from the online resources the center is sending, as well as the weekly family meals being provided.

Since the beginning of the COVID-19 crisis, the McGivney Center has been working to ensure that they are providing for their families and the community.

The center has been able to offer dinner prepared by Vazzy’s, Calise’s Food Market and Layla’s Falafel by social-distancing curb-side pick-up Tuesdays-Fridays through Wednesday, June 3. The center has also been sending online after-school resources to families and has provided WIFI hotspot busses parked at convenient locations for families who need internet access.

“We are doing everything we can to keep our families strong and kids healthy,” said board member Anne McCrory, who spoke about how although McGivney is closed due to COVID-19, they are still providing resources to their families. “These kids step out of their everyday lives and they walk stronger, more confidently and with greater purpose toward something that could show every bit of potential that they have,” McCrory said.

“The McGivney Center provides hope in a very practical and regular way to the people they serve,” said Tom Matthews, board member.

“The McGivney Center is a wonderful example of the mission of the Church hard at work in the city of Bridgeport,” said Bishop Frank J. Caggiano in a video message. “Even in this time of great challenge, the McGivney Center is providing meals and free WIFI for our families and young people. I come to you with great gratitude in this time—you are truly heroes on the frontline of helping our young people to move forward in confidence and hope,” the bishop addressed those who tuned in.

The McGivney Community Center’s mission for youth is to provide stimulating and enriching programs that foster academic success and self-esteem.

Executive Director Lorraine Gibbons thanked everyone who participated “from the bottom of her heart.”

Donations will help kids attend summer camp, provide healthy snacks, camp activities and supplies. By the end of the night, a goal of $50,000 was reached, with more donations projected to pour in over the following 48 hours!

(For more information on the McGivney Center, to watch the video of the virtual fundraiser, or to donate visit: