Collaborative, faith-based program gets national honor

The Raleigh Faith Community Support Circle Program is getting national recognition for its work with needy families.

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RALEIGH, N.C. — A national organization has recognized a program of Raleigh Catholic Charities for its work.

The 2009 Arnold Andrews Award for Collaborative Excellence will be presented Friday by Ministering Together, a national organization that encourages dioceses, parishes and ministries of the Catholic Church to partner in providing health, education, pastoral and social services.

The Raleigh Faith Community Support Circle Program began as a way to serve those who made their way to the Triangle after Hurricane Katrina. Over time, Catholic Charities partnered with Lutheran Family Services and members of other local churches to provide assistance to needy families. The Faith Community Support Circle Program for Homeless Families was born.

Rick Miller-Haraway, director of the Catholic Charities regional office in Raleigh, praised the work of volunteers and the generosity of donors in making the program a success.

He noted that the program received assistance from the city of Raleigh, Wake County, the John Rex Endowment and by the A. J. Fletcher Foundation. He cited Jim and Barbara Goodmon, benefactors of the Fletcher Foundation, for their personal commitment to the program and their work in promoting the program in the local business community. Jim Goodmon is president and CEO of Capitol Broadcasting Corporation, the parent company of WRAL-TV, and other communications, real estate and sports interests.

The Ministering Together selection committee called the Faith Community Support Circle Program the “best model of collaborative excellence” it encountered.

Miller-Haraway said, “In my 30-plus years of doing social work and ministry, this is the best program I’ve ever been involved with in terms of truly empowering people and putting our faith into action."

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