Weekly Mission Focus: Catholic Parish Outreach

Catholic Parish Outreach (CPO), the largest food pantry in Eastern NC, is celebrating 42 years of serving the triangle community.

CPO is a program of Catholic Charities, which is a 501c3 non-profit organization.

In 1977, Sister Ann Joseph and Sister Louise Hill, from the Order of the Daughters of Charity were sent to Raleigh to start a Catholic Charities program to provide direct services to the poor in downtown Raleigh. Recognizing the need for assistance was greater than two individuals could provide, they enlisted the support of the local Catholic community. As a result, St. Joseph, St. Rafael, Sacred Heart, Our Lady of Lourdes, and St. Mary parishes joined together to form Catholic Charities.

They provide emergency food assistance and, when possible, small children’s clothing and baby items, such as formula and diapers. In 2018 CPO served 8,200 people a month on average with: 1,900 volunteers and 3.5 paid staff. They distributed 2.7 million pounds of groceries to residents of Wake, Franklin, and Johnston counties. Their mission is to serve needy families of our community.

Recent local hunger statistics indicate that 25% of NC children under 5 go to bed hungry, 2,200+ children are registered in Wake County public schools as homeless, 170,200 people in NC receive emergency food assistance every week, and 80% of NC households with children who receive food assistance do not know where their next meal is coming from. FPC supports CPO with food donations from FPC shares, which John Thomas faithfully delivers every month. To volunteer or learn more about this great ministry, visit www.cporaleigh.org.