Our Lady of Grace has a number of long-standing partners in ministry and outreach that work to meet the basic needs of the community. We support many of these organizations financially and spiritually, and through parishioner donations. Most of us think of poverty as an inner city phenomenon, but poverty exists in the suburbs as well, often very well hidden. These needs are as real as the generational poverty that exists elsewhere. In fact, a 2010 Brookings Institute Study, "The Suburbanization of Poverty," found that the poor population in metro area suburbs increased by 25% from 2000 to 2008. The recession of 2008 hit middle class wage-earners especially hard, giving rise to needs where there had previously been affluence. Some of our partners are listed below
VEAP (Volunteers Enlisted to Assist People) is a community organization that serves Edina, Richfield, and Bloomington residents who are in need of food, clothing, or school supplies. Our Lady of Grace Catholic Church holds quarterly food drives to benefit VEAP and collects school supplies each August to help children go to school ready to learn.
STEP serves St. Louis Park residents by providing food and other necessities to those who find themselves in need of emergency help. STEP can provide help with utilities, housing assistance, and transportation.
Catholic Charities is the largest provider of social services in the state of Minnesota. It provides meals at the Dorothy Day Center, and Branch II, a safe haven to homeless youth at Hope Street in Minneapolis; child care assistance at the North Side Child Development Center; help for single parents through Seton Services; and so much more. Our Lady of Grace parishioners have generously responded to the needs of Catholic Charities clients with our Thanksgiving Food Drive, and many individual parishioners volunteer in the many programs of Catholic Charities.
St. Anne's Women's Shelter
St. Anne's Women's Shelter OLG reaches out to residents at St. Anne's through a coat drive for the residents and their children, and through our Christmas giving.