TORONTO – As part of its Worldwide “Lingap Sa Mamamayan” or Aid To Humanity event, the Iglesia Ni Cristo (INC) or Church Of Christ in Toronto donated 100 care packages to Homes First Society, and 2,500 pounds of food to the Flemingdon Food Bank. Each charitable organization also received a cheque donation of $2,000CDN.
The event took place at the INC’s worship building located at 71 Guestville Avenue in Toronto. Church members in the Ecclesiastical District of Greater Toronto were connected virtually via videoconferencing to witness the event.
According to Homes First Society, for every 10,000 people in Toronto, about 30 are homeless. Over 30% of the city’s homeless live with a mental health issue, and over 25% live with an addiction. During the pandemic, the situation has become worse.
Samara Rakhraj, Fundraising and Development Specialist for Homes First Society, said that the Church’s donation will greatly help the community.
“We’re in the winter months right now … If the cold weather is here, the donations of hygiene kits, especially comforters, are definitely a need and will be in good use. We have individuals and families as well as individuals and housing that are in need of that whether it be in their own housing or even just in the shelters as well. Hygiene kits, basic necessities of just being able to cut your hair and keep yourself put together, it goes a long way not only physically but also mentally, too. So it’s definitely needed and it will go to good use,” Rakhraj said.
“Thank you so much for all of your support, the brothers and sisters, that really just kind of (blew) us away in terms of the donation of the items as well as a financial donation. It will go a long way,” she added.
Along with homelessness, food insecurity is another serious issue in Canada even before the COVID-19 pandemic. According to Food Banks Canada, about four million Canadians are struggling to put food on the table.
Chadi Abedalrazek, the Operations Manager of Flemingdon Food Bank, said their food bank had been hit hard by the pandemic.
“There are a lot of challenges we are facing right now, the shortage of food and the high demand of people coming to the food bank,” he said as he thanked the INC for its various donations.
“I’m happy that I got to know the Church Of Christ and all the staff and volunteers … There’s not enough words to thank this kind of a big organization that always stands by anytime I need help or support. They’re ready for that. You guys are doing an amazing job,” he said.
Abedalrazek also acknowledged the birthday of INC Executive Minister Brother Eduardo V. Manalo on October 31.
“It’s my honor to be here celebrating this special occasion for a good reason, which is helping a community, so your support and donation are going to make a difference,” he said.
Brother Glendo H. Baitan, district supervising minister of Greater Toronto, explained the importance of the INC’s Worldwide Aid To Humanity.
“And as we are being led by the Executive Minister of the Church, Brother Eduardo V. Manalo … we’re able to reach out and give back to the community,” he said.
“It strengthens the love of the brotherhood. The true God who guides this Church and the Church Administration is powerful, and to Him nothing is impossible … we would like to bring back all the praises and glory to our Almighty God.”
The Iglesia Ni Cristo (Church Of Christ) was registered in the Philippines on July 27, 1914 by its first Executive Minister, Brother Felix Y. Manalo. After 107 years, it has spread to 159 countries and territories with its members belonging to 148 nationalities and races.
About the Iglesia Ni Cristo (INC) or Church Of Christ
For more about the Church and its activities, please visit www.iglesianicristo.net.