By providing classroom instruction and volunteer opportunities, Mary of Nazareth’s Social Concerns Program raises students’ awareness of the plight of the poor and encourages students to fulfill their responsibility to help those who lack life’s basic necessities.
“To love God and neighbor is not something abstract,” Pope Francis teaches us. Rather, “it means seeing in every person the face of the Lord to be served, to serve him concretely.” The MoN Social Concerns Committee strives to provide opportunities for all members of our school community to serve both God and neighbor. Each classroom completes at least 2 service projects a year, and faculty, staff and parents are encouraged to participate in school-wide activities. Below please find this year’s Social Concerns calendar of projects and events.
2021-2022 Social Concerns Calendar
- Collect gently used shoes of all ages to donate to Soles4Souls
- Operation Christmas Shoebox (Samaritan’s Purse)
- Collect Christmas décor, trees, and ornaments donate to Green Drop National Federation of the Blind
- Collect gently used coats and scarves for Wider Circle
- Collect homemade Valentine cards and candy to mail to our military soldiers
- Collect gentile used Woman’s and Man’s Dress Apparel for Wider Circle
- Collect gently used books to donate to Velocity of Books
- Collect school supplies for The Wish List Depot
Partnership to End Poverty: A Wider Circle
Mary of Nazareth works closely with A Wider Circle, a Silver Spring
-based organization dedicated to ending poverty. Among other things, AWC runs a “Neighbor-to-Neighbor” program, which aims to help families transition out of shelters into homes “with dignity and hope.” Additionally, AWC runs a Center for Professional Development, which assists individuals in their efforts to obtain jobs. In February 2014, CNN named Mark Bergel, A Wider Circle's founder and Executive Director, a 2014 CNN Hero: Every Day People Changing the World.
Mary of Nazareth School is proud to partner with A Wider Circle in raising awareness around and bringing an end to poverty in our surrounding communities. The school has sponsored numerous activities and fundraisers to benefit A Wider Circle. Past projects have included a week-long event, Sleep in Solidarity: Donate for a Dream, in which students gave up their beds and slept on the floor in solidarity with those who do not have access to decent mattresses. Students have also held fundraisers, collecting $1 donations to help A Wider Circle purchase new mattresses for individuals and families living in poverty. In addition, students have organized drives collecting food and canned goods, professional attire, household items and toiletries to support A Wider Circle’s mission. Mary of Nazareth families come together for a day of service at A Wider Circle, assembling and moved furniture, sorting clothes and linens, organizing books and toys, babysitting small children whose mothers were attending class.