FOOD DRIVE PROGRAM
MIAMI BEACH, FL & BALTIMORE, MD
Providing Meals & Necessity Kits to the Homeless Community
MIAMI BEACH, FL
MEAL READY TO EAT
The Miami Beach Food Drive & Necessity Kit Program of the Knights and Dames of Saint Lazarus of Jerusalem, Grand Priory of the USA is a domestic based program, located at the Church Saint Francis de Sales, in Miami Beach, FL.
While Miami Beach remains a prime and well established international tourist destination, well known worldwide for its luxury hotels, beautiful beaches and exotic cars, it is also the home of a large homeless population.
In January of 2010, only 3,832 people had been living either on the street or in shelters throughout Miami-Dade County. This decrease alone may not be entirely surprising when considering the moderate economic turnaround of the time, but what is potentially worrying about the numbers is their seeming immunity to the economic crisis during 2007 and 2008.
The number of homeless did not only not increase from 4,709 at the beginning of 2006, but in fact decreased to 4,392 at the beginning of 2007, and only increase in 2008 to 4,578 – still well below the number recorded before the recession.
But that is not to say that Miami-Dade was the only county that recorded fewer people believed to be homeless on a given night. In Los Angeles County, over 88,000 people were regarded as being without a permanent home in 2005, only to have that number plummet to just more than 48,000 in 2009.
The areas where homeless tend to concentrate themselves into tend to ironically also be where some of the most affluent residents of the city live. Both Downtown Miami and Miami Beach are areas where you are most likely to come across a resident of the streets, not just in the fringes of Miami’s worse neighborhoods.
The Meal Assistance Program of the Order of St Lazarus of Jerusalem, Grand Priory of the US is a domestic based program whose primary mission is to assist the homeless population of the Greater Baltimore, MD Area.
The Baltimore area encompasses roughly 2600 homeless people who are without a place to stay and food to eat.
The Meal Assistance Program was established by John Raynor, a Brother within the Order, on 14 Feb 2018, Ash Wednesday, as a means to help those in need on street corners and various other parts of the city with a meal to eat and water to drink.
With the support of St Stephen’s Catholic Church in Kingsville, MD, Ready to Eat Meals and bottled water are distributed to the homeless in the area. Each meal requires no refrigeration and has a shelf life of 5 years. With the bottled water, a heater located within the package can be activated to make the meal hot if desired. Each meal provides 1800 calories, enough for one day’s worth of calories. The meals are purchased commercially and are accompanied by a rosary, cross and saint medal to further the mission of both the Church and the Order. On average, 35 meals are distributed each month to the surrounding Baltimore Area.
The Knights and Dames of Saint Lazarus are now offering “Necessity Kit” composed of a full non-perishable meal, a bottle of water, some soap, toothbrush and toothpaste, a shaver and a fresh tee-shirt. Those necessity kits are available upon request at the Church office of Saint Francis de Sales, in Miami Beach, FL
This program offers around 100 Necessity Kits per week, but the demand is estimated at about 170. The Grand Priory of the USA is working aggressively to reach this weekly goal.
The "Meal Ready to Eat" Program in Baltimore, MD offers military grade hot or cold meal, with a cross, a rosary and a Saint's medal.
Please consider donating for the Homeless Community of Baltimore!
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