An ecumenical ministry in the Quad Cities raises awareness about poverty in America.
Approximately 46 million people, 15% of the U.S. population, live in poverty, according to the 2011 U.S. census. In the Quad Cities, almost 20% of children (under 18) live in poverty. Additionally, another 50 million Americans live in “food insecure” households, meaning they are unable to consistently access the food they need for a healthy life.
Churches United of the Quad Cities Area operates 24 food pantries and 3 evening meal sites on both the Illinois and Iowa sides of the Mississippi River. They recently celebrated 50 years of service through a variety of outreach programs, including their hunger ministry to those in need.
Next month they are sponsoring a Poverty Simulation Experience to help participants understand what it is like to struggle to meet basic human needs week after week. The event will be held on Saturday, October 12th, from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. at St. Pius Church, Farrell Hall 2502 – 29th Avenue in Rock Island, Illinois. Registration is free and available online through the University of Illinois Extension at http://web.extension.illinois.edu/hmrs.
Churches United is supported in part through a Matthew 25 grant from the Southeast District made possible with apportionment gifts from local churches. Anne Wachal, a staff member for Churches United and a member of the Asbury United Methodist Church in Bettendorf, writes that their partnership with the United Methodist Church makes a statement that “Church United is valued as an ecumenical organization.”