St. Alban's Child Enrichment Center
A non-profit childcare provider since 1949, St. Alban’s serves poverty-level children, ages six weeks to five years old in the Coconut Grove area of Miami. Over the past 63 years, the program has grown with the population and today serves 210 children and their families annually. They provide for the educational, social services, mental health, disability, and nutritional needs of these children. With EC funding, St. Alban's has been able to provide for the nutritional and dietary needs of over 200 children during the 2012-2016 school years. Each child receives an individual nutritional assessment by a Licensed Dietitian and children with concerns received follow-up services that include consultation with parents, teachers, and staff. Children with allergies to certain foods received alternate food choices that has been planned and approved by the Licensed Dietitian. They have also implemented an educational component to the nutrition program that includes implementation of nutrition activities in the classroom through curriculum. As medical research shows, many poor children have poor nutritional habits that affect their health outcomes. This is an important component for the physical health and learning capacities of young children. On a bi-weekly basis, children engage in nutritional activities where they are able to learn about food and healthy eating. EC has funded this wellness component for the past six years.
Casa Valentina's is home to former foster youth, young men, women and mothers with babies, with the tools to transition successfully towards thriving adulthood. They assist them in fulfilling their full potential by providing safe affordable housing, and the life skills learning they need. Casa Valentina employs a program model whose core features are predicated on life skills workshops that address critical areas of need-particularly academic achievement. They incorporate data-driven best practices with young adults aging out of foster care to increase self-sufficiency and academic success. Casa Valentina's Board of Directors and staff have determined that supporting the academic, vocational and professional goals of our residents is central to reaching our mission of educating our residents holistically. The tutoring component of their program ensures residents are equipped to be on par with their peers, enter vocational or college-level classes, and achieve the goals and dreams they've developed for themselves. Episcopal Charities of Southeast Florida provided the "seed" money for the academic support and tutoring program during the 2007-2008 funding cycle, and continues to support and see the program grow and become a significant component to the residents’ success when they leave Casa Valentina. A remedial component has been added and their goals for the tutoring program are defined and measurable.
Feed My Sheep
This is a unique ministry for Southeast Florida. Breakfast is served outside the downtown Methodist Church about 6:30 AM as the sun is just beginning to rise. Twice a week, approximately 200 men, some women and children line up to receive a bag of breakfast and coffee. They are workers living in very sparse conditions, the downtown homeless and a few newly homeless families. The Methodist Church serves as the feeding hub for homeless in downtown Miami where other churches and civic organizations serve meals during the week. Volunteers prepare the bags on Tuesday and Thursday afternoon for the Wednesday and Friday morning distributions. Led by St. Philip's Church, many Episcopal churches are involved in boiling eggs and purchase of food for this program.
St. John's Feeding program
The feeding program, Friend to Friend provides a wholesome meal, clothing distribution, school supplies and Christmas gifts to 5000 unduplicated elderly, families and youth. The feeding program is open every Thursday with 15 volunteers and two part-time staff. Their goals include being able to serve more people, involve more youth in service, increase church financial support, provide clothing and blood pressure screenings regularly.
St. Faith's Food Pantry
Opened in 1989 as a result of the need and poverty found in the neighborhood, St. Faith’s is open two ½ days a week for individuals and families to pick up 160-180 bags of groceries that make up well-balanced meals for families and elderly persons each month. The food pantry serves over 353 unduplicated families/households a year, distributing 2405 bags of food. Six church volunteers keep the pantry running and each bag costs approximately $5.00. Most food is purchased at a reduced cost and some support (produce donations and cash) from individual church members is given.