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Washington State Programs 2018 - 2019

Picture of Program Chairman
Thomas C. Williams, FN
State Program Director
Email: GENERALPROGRAM@kofc-wa.org
Phone: (206) 617-0600

November 2018

Brother Knights,

We continue stepping through the changes due to the Faith In Action Program this month, exploring the Community Programs led by State Chairman Dr. Scott Hulse. Last month we looked at the Life program, led by State Chairman Ron DeGroot.

Featured versus Required Programs

To qualify for the Columbian Award, you must complete four programs in each of the main program categories. Required Programs mean just that, you are required to complete that program for credit in that main program category. When your Council conducts a Featured Program and satisfies the requirements, you will receive two credits in that category.

As with all other programs, your first action should be to work with your pastor and ensure that you have his approval and guidance for these programs. Remember, too, that each program represents an opportunity to be visible in your community and to reach out to prospective members. Be sure to wear Knights logo apparel, have signs denoting the event and Council(s), and have membership pamphlets available.

Knights are called to serve others. Our first principle is Charity – at home with our families and in our communities. When Knights of Columbus members come together as one through their council and parish, they accomplish great things.

HELPING HANDS – Required/New

Put your faith into action and help those less fortunate in your community. In the model of Knights of Columbus founder, Venerable Michael McGivney, councils will lead efforts to assist those most in need. Guidelines for this program are broad and can include forming partnerships with local aid organizations or independently planning unique activities.

The Helping Hands program is designed to recognize the important work many councils already do to care for the most disadvantaged members of our communities – the homeless, the addicted, the elderly who may feel isolated and abandoned, and many others. Through this program, councils will aid the needy through the activities they feel best suit their community, such as serving at or running a soup kitchen, repairing the facilities of a local service organization or something entirely unique. The requirements for this program are very broad in order to allow councils to serve their community in whatever way is most needed.

COATS FOR KIDS - Featured

Provide warmth for deserving children during cold winter months. Councils across North America can purchase new winter coats for children in need at a discount and distribute them in their local communities.

Families struggling to make ends meet use their scarce resources to meet the most basic needs and cannot always afford the vital essential of a new winter coat. The goal of the Coats for Kids program is to ensure that no child in North America goes without a coat during the winter season. Through the dedication of councils across the United States and Canada, hundreds of thousands of new winter coats have been distributed to children since program inception.

GLOBAL WHEELCHAIR MISSION - Featured

Change the lives of people with disabilities worldwide. Councils are encouraged to donate at least $150 for a wheelchair. Through partnerships, councils can also purchase a large container of 110 to 280 wheelchairs for their own donation sites. A featured program, Global Wheelchair Mission counts for two credits toward the Columbian Award.

Since 2009, the Knights of Columbus has partnered with the American Wheelchair Mission and Canadian Wheelchair Foundation, which fall under the umbrella of the Global Wheelchair Mission. The goal of this initiative is to provide aid to those who lack the freedom of mobility in our communities and around the world. Whether councils are presenting wheelchairs to local veterans and neighbors in need or donating funds to benefit those abroad, mobility brings with it independence and dignity.

HABITAT FOR HUMANITY - Featured

Build homes for families in need. Knights of Columbus councils are asked to donate a minimum of $1,000 or 200 service hours to Habitat for Humanity projects in their community. A featured program, Habitat for Humanity counts for two credits toward the Columbian Award.

Knights of Columbus councils work closely with Habitat for Humanity, a nonprofit Christian organization, to build homes for families in need at substantially reduced costs. Each year, councils throughout the world donate a considerable number of volunteer hours and dollars to this worthy cause. In order to satisfy program requirements, councils are asked to donate a minimum of $1,000 or 200 service hours to Habitat for Humanity projects in their community.

CATHOLIC CITIZENSHIP ESSAY CONTEST

Encourage youth in your community to become citizens grounded in their faith through creative writing. Open to all Catholic students (public, private, home, or parochial schools) in grades 8 to 12 during the current school year.

This contest encourages today’s youth to be more connected to their community and their faith. The goal of this program is to involve young Catholics in 8th through 12th grade (public, private, parochial or home schools) in civic discourse and instill in them religious and life-affirming values. The essay should be approximately 500-750 words on a specific subject, changing every other year. Entrants will be judged on grammar, style, and how clearly they present the theme – which should showcase creativity, imagination and overall development of the topic.

DISASTER PREPAREDNESS

Prepare your community before disaster strikes. Councils will engage their parish and community in disaster preparedness exercises by organizing trainings, fundraisers and various awareness activities.

Communities can be brought to a halt when disaster occurs – from large natural disasters to local crises. As community leaders, Knights of Columbus will ensure that their members, families and parish communities are prepared through a campaign that promotes planning and education. This program motivates councils to take a holistic approach to emergency situations by promoting readiness in times of crisis, assessing response capabilities, and learning how to properly respond well ahead of a disaster. Councils will also fundraise and teach (where able) in anticipation of larger efforts to assist brothers in need.

FREE THROW CHAMPIONSHIP

Offer an athletic outlet for youth ages 9 to 14 in your community. Councils can sponsor a competition by ordering a Free Throw Championship Kit, or volunteer to host and/or support the district, regional and state/province championships.

Since 1972, councils have sponsored the Knights of Columbus Free Throw Championship for boys and girls between the ages of 9 and 14 to provide an athletic outlet and encourage the values of sportsmanship and healthy competition. Kids compete within their own gender and age and progress from local level to district, regional and state/province competitions. This program is a great way to introduce the Knights of Columbus to the community and recruit faithful family men of service.

SOCCER CHALLENGE

Provide an athletic outlet for youth ages 9 to 14 in your community. Designed for players to demonstrate their skills in the penalty kick. Councils can sponsor a competition by ordering a Soccer Challenge Kit, or volunteer to host and/or support the district, regional and state/province championships.

The Soccer Challenge is a fun way for Knights of Columbus councils to engage youth in their communities with an athletic event that encourages the values of sportsmanship and healthy competition. Children demonstrate the most important skill in soccer – shooting accuracy on the penalty kick – and compete to reach the international level of competition. The program also offers an opportunity to introduce the Knights of Columbus to the community and recruit faithful family men of service.

Next month we will work through the Family Programs, led by Ed Hebert.

Vivat Jesus!

Fraternally,

Tom Williams

General Program Director
Washington State Council
GeneralProgram@kofc-wa.org  

 


 


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