Serving the Hungry - Winter 2019 Newsletter

Unsung Hero — Josh Curry

WinnerFor most of us, knowing where to find basic need services in our community is simply not a priority. Being fortunate that we don’t have to rely on a soup kitchen or a food pantry or a homeless shelter should be viewed as a blessing. However, that’s not the case for several people who reach out to agencies such as ours. In some instances that connection can change a life forever.

When Josh Curry was first introduced to Catholic Charities, it wasn’t as a volunteer, actually that came much later, but instead as a recipient of services or better worded as a patron. As a young child, Josh, along with his siblings and mother, was a resident of Bethany House. He frequented the programs at Ryves Youth Center and enjoyed meals from the Fishes & Loaves Soup Kitchen
with his family.

Over the years Josh became active in the many programs that Ryves offers and eventually made the decision to give back to the center that had given him so much.

Fast forward to 2019, Josh serves as the Assistant Scoutmaster for Boy Scout Troop 22 which is based at Ryves Youth Center where he is active and engaged with the children. Additionally, Josh volunteers with the Foodbank and soup kitchen as well – always taking on each task with a ‘yes and big smile!’

Josh goes above and beyond to make sure our guests are welcomed into a clean and friendly environment. He often comes in early to assist with soup kitchen duties, stays after meals to talk with the children and help clean up and physically carries food to the kitchen from the
foodbank itself.

Naomi Smith, Food Service Coordinator, explains “Josh is not just an everyday hero– he is our hero EVERY DAY!” Never hesitating to help and always wearing a smile, Josh Curry impacts the lives of so many and is definitely one of our organizations Unsung Heroes.

On September 5th, Josh was the recipient of the 2019 Advisory Council President’s Award at our Annual Benefit.

To learn more about Ryves Youth Center, the Fishes & Loaves Soup Kitchen or to volunteer, please visit or call (812) 232-1447.

A Word from the Agency Director

GirlDear Friends,

Imagine growing up poor and experiencing food insecurity not just once, but throughout your life. That’s the life Jacklyn Chaney, Development Manager at Feeding America, shared with us at the 45th Annual Catholic Charities Benefit Dinner. She highlighted a time while she was in college when her mother had an injury which kept her from working at the same time her dad was laid off from his long-time steady job in a tire factory. For a month, her parents lived on peanut butter sandwiches – not even with jelly because it was all they could afford to eat. Why didn’t they tell friends or family? They were too proud to ask for help. They didn’t want to feel poor.

By the age of 26, Jacklyn was making more money than her parents ever had combined. Even so, she struggled to make ends meet while paying off medical bills, maintaining her own housing and helping her parents whenever she could. Living in constant fear of the fall back into poverty, she revealed, “The low-key PTSD of growing up in poverty is a constant scarcity mindset that leads you to hoard what small wealth you’ve accumulated and occasionally turn your back on those you love as an act of self-preservation.”

Jacklyn’s story helps to shed light on the 36,720 of our food insecure neighbors, 10,350 of whom are children, who struggle to survive every day.

In this issue of Serving the Hungry, we highlight the results of the 2019 Map the Meal Gap. For the ninth consecutive year, Feeding America has conducted the Map the Meal Gap study to estimate the prevalence of food insecurity for every county and congressional district in the United States. To better understand the relationship between food insecurity and poor health outcomes at the local level, this year’s study includes an analysis of food insecurity in the context of health.

Adam Dewey, Research Manager at Feeding America, writes, “The local confluence of food insecurity and both negative health outcomes and contributing factors underscores the need for collaborative, crosssector public-health and food-security interventions. This is especially true in counties with higher rates of people struggling with hunger.

Although federal nutrition programs serve as the first line of defense against hunger, not all individuals in need qualify for assistance or receive adequate support. This reality underscores the importance of charitable food assistance, but also the need to protect and strengthen federal nutrition assistance programs.”

Learn more about food insecurity in your community at When we better understand hunger, we can help end hunger.

John C. Etling
Agency Director

What is Food Insecurity and How Does Our Community Compare?

Food insecurity refers to USDA’s measure of lack of access to enough food for an active, healthy life for all household members and limited or uncertain availability of nutritionally adequate foods. These households may not be food insecure all the time and often food insecurity reflects a household’s need to make trade-offs between important basic needs like housing or medical bills, and purchasing nutritional foods.

Children are especially vulnerable to food insecurity and it impacts everything from their health and development to their education and relationships. Experiencing this as a child often leads to long term effects.


Share your time and talent with us as a Foodbank volunteer! Call 812-232-1447.

Upcoming Events

Orange Friday
November 22nd
Follow us on Facebook
@Put Your Orange On
Before you go shopping on
Black Friday, feed the hungry on Orange Friday!

Share Your Thanksgiving Food Drive
November 14th
Join us at WTHI-TV’s studio on 8th and Ohio where
we will be collecting monetary and non-perishable food
donations from 7am to 6:30pm
Can’t join us? Check out our website for a list of locations.

10th Annual Soup Bowl Benefit
Saturday, February 1, 2020
Tickets go on sale January 2
Follow us on Facebook
@Soup Bowl Benefit

Need Help Finding Food?

If you need help finding food or know someone who does, call the National Hunger Hotline at 1-866-3-HUNGRY (1-866-348-6479). The Hunger Hotline is available Monday – Friday from 9am – 6pm. All calls are free and confidential. Help someone you know receive the nutrition they need to remain healthy and productive.




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