Lafayette Urban Ministry

Kristin Malavenda / http://wbaa.org/

While most kids look forward to putting away their notebooks and textbooks for the summer, a group of kids in Lafayette is using the next couple of months to prepare for the upcoming school year.

They’re part of the Lafayette Urban Ministry’s 5th Quarter Summer Learning Program, which is in its fourth year.

WBAA's Kristin Malavenda reports on the effort to close the achievement gap for low-income students in the area.

An annual event that raises money to help feed the hungry is undergoing some changes this year.

Due to repairs to the John T. Myers pedestrian bridge, Hunger Hike will depart from the east end of the Levee Plaza parking lot in West Lafayette instead of Riehle Plaza.

Money raised is split evenly between Food Finders Food Bank, St. Thomas Aquinas Haiti Ministry, and Lafayette Urban Ministry.

LUM executive director Joe Micon says despite nearly missing their $90,000 goal last year, a new permanent fundraising committee has set a $125,000 goal for this year.

Immigration reform is the topic of a forum tomorrow in West Lafayette.

The event is part of a six-week bus tour across the country known as the Fast for Families Across America campaign.

The effort grew out of a 22-day hunger strike in Washington DC late last year.

Rudy López is a Senior Organizer for the Fair Immigration Reform Movement.

He participated in the hunger strike, which drew national attention and visits in his tent on the National Mall from President Obama, Vice President Biden, First Lady Michelle Obama and several members of the US Congress.

The Lafayette Urban Ministry is getting some help providing emergency financial assistance to low-income individuals and families.

The Purdue crew team has raised $13,016 for the nonprofit’s Good Samaritan Fund.

LUM executive director Joe Micon says the money helps people in need pay for things such as utility bills, rent, and prescription medications.

The funds were raised through the annual row-a-thon which was held last month at the Tippecanoe Mall.

A check was presented to LUM during a ceremony at the Purdue Boathouse yesterday.

The Community Foundation of Greater Lafayette is awarding its latest round of grants. The $102,492.65 will help five organizations with larger projects.

The Furniture Bank is buying a truck thanks to donations from several groups, including the Foundation. The organization that helps those with a housing emergency received a $20,000 grant.

The bank is run by First United Methodist Church with several nonprofits and the City of Lafayette. Volunteer Jeanne Norberg says the box truck will pick-up furniture donations and can now deliver it to people getting back on their feet.

A fundraising event this weekend is moving to higher ground.

The Hunger Hike 5K has been moved to Munger Park in Lafayette due to flooding along the Wabash Heritage Trail.

The event benefits the Lafayette Urban Ministry, Food Finders Food Bank, and the St. Thomas Aquinas Haiti Ministry.

LUM executive director Joe Micon says for the past few years, the 5K was part of the annual Hunger Hike in September.

But he says it made more sense to develop it into a separate event.

The race begins at nine o’clock Saturday morning.

Since Lafayette Urban Ministry’s 2013 tax assistance program began January 22, it’s brought back $2.5 million to low income tax filers.

Executive Director Joe Micon says it’s an important resource for those who seek the help.

“With these refunds, individuals are able to pay back rents. They’re able to purchase clothing for their children. People have paid tuition at Ivy Tech with these refunds,” he says. “Even had an individual purchase a car so he could accept a job.”

Pablo Malavenda

A local non-profit will use a $14,457.26 donation from the Purdue crew team to help some of the area’s neediest families.

The money benefits the Lafayette Urban Ministry’s Good Samaritan program.

The financial assistance fund provides emergency help to pay for things such as utility bills, rent, and prescription medications.

LUM officials say no operating expenses are taken out, so 100% of the donations to the program go to a family in need.

The money was raised during the Crew team’s annual Row-A-Thon last month.

Fifth Quarter targets second year of success

Jul 20, 2012

The success of a program that launched in 2011 is aiming for similar results this year.

Lafayette Urban Ministry’s Fifth Quarter initiative is intended to help low income students continue their education during the summer months.

LUM executive director Joe Micon says the goal is avoid any education drop off during that time.

O'Callaghan retires from LUM

Jun 12, 2012

The Director of Social Justice at Lafayette Urban Ministry is stepping down.

Patti O’Callaghan is retiring after more than ten years with the non-profit.

She says she is proud of how the organization’s efforts over the past decade have helped improve the community.

O’Callaghan says LUM  will use several people to take on her roles running some of its events including the Hunger Hike and Tax Assistance Program.

She says plans to stay active with the organization and others in the area, specifically those focused on providing support to abused children.

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