Catholic Charities Hosts Successful Empty Bowls Fundraiser

Empty Bowls Guests in Notre Dame Gym

As the largest fundraiser specifically for Catholic Charities’ Emergency Services, this event raises awareness of the effects of poverty and hunger in our communities. Attendees experience a simple lunch of soup and bread in solidarity with those living in poverty. Empty Bowls is unique in the collaboration with local potters to create handmade, commemorative bowls for attendees. There is also a partnership with Barb & Mark McClure, owners of Barb’s Soup’s On in Elmira, to offer guests delicious homemade soup. It was the perfect combination of excellent food, beautiful bowls, and a worthy cause.

The Empty Bowls Campaign was able to raise over $21,000 to serve those in our community who turn to Catholic Charities for support. These funds will provide food and personal hygiene items through our homeless services and our three pantries at the Samaritan Center, High Street, and Schuyler Outreach, as well as delicious meals through the Elmira Community Kitchen.

Ellen Topping, Chief Program Officer of Catholic Charities, commented, “Events like Empty Bowls remind me of how we continue to accomplish our mission with the generosity of our community. Together, we offer hope by empowering individuals and families to reach self-sufficiency and bring comfort to those who are alone and in need.”

An overview of Catholic Charities programs was shared, along with a presentation by the Junior Ladies of Charity from Notre Dame High School.

Special thanks goes out to Notre Dame High School which hosted the event this year. The support of their Staff and Students was greatly appreciated. Students welcomed guests to the event, served the guests, and provided music both before and during lunch.

Catholic Charities recognizes the potters and their students who contribute handmade bowls each year: Gene Carr, Retired; Corning Community College Students and Erica Unterman; Elmira College Students and Chris Longwell; Doug Holtgrewe, Retired; Horseheads High School Students and Cynthia Cratsley; Notre Dame High School Students and Hannah Leeber.
Corporate Sponsors of the event included The Hilliard Corporation; Chemung Canal Trust Company, Person Centered Services, Visions Federal Credit Union; Cameron Manufacturing, Elmira Structures, Erway Ambulance Services, Gough Holding Corporation, Kennedy Valve, and Wegmans.

Catholic Charities’ Emergency Services provides homeless services, rental assistance, food pantries, free meals, and prescription drug assistance in Chemung and Schuyler Counties. Anyone in need of assistance may call 607-734-9784.
To make a donation to support these services, visit Catholic Charities’ website. If you are interested in volunteering or hosting a Bags of HOPE supply drive, please contact Katie Rhodes at 607-317-5577 or send a message through the Catholic Charities’ website.