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MotherCabriniGrantThe Mother Cabrini Health Foundation announced last week that the forthcoming Outreach Center at Asbury First United Methodist Church is a recipient of its first round of grants in support of the health and well-being of vulnerable New Yorkers across the state.

For over 50 years, Asbury First has offered warm meals, clothing, household supplies, laundry facilities, medical care, and showers to those in need. In 2019 alone, they served over 38,000 meals, clothed over 6,000 unique families, and offered free medical care to hundreds around the region. To date, this important work has been done in largely inaccessible spaces, spread across its three-building campus. As the demand grows, and more guests need more services, Asbury First has plans to integrate their services by converting one of their historic buildings into a fully accessible and expansive Outreach Center.

After evaluating their programs, Asbury First discovered that their current design and structure creates a barrier for many guests. Too often, they end up having to choose between food, clothing, or health care when their needs often encompass all three. This is not unique to Asbury First. The Rochester-Monroe Anti-Poverty Initiative (RMAPI) has named access to basic needs as one of its core foci and suggested the need for integrated services. This new Outreach Center will mark a shift in Asbury First’s focus to a more holistic approach to caring for the needs of its guests. By centralizing their services into one dedicated, accessible, and beautiful space, they hope to remove barriers for guests.

Most of the funding for this Outreach Center has come from the congregation itself. To help close the final funding gap, Asbury First has reached out to local foundations and interested individuals to help raise the rest of the money. “While we are not quite there yet, this grant from the Mother Cabrini Health Foundation brings us another step closer to making this Outreach Center a reality,” says the Rev. Dr. Stephen Cady. With this grant, the Mother Cabrini Health Foundation joins commitments from the Davenport-Hatch Foundation, the August Family Foundation, and the Willmott Foundation, among others.

Asbury First hopes to break ground on their new Outreach Center during its Bicentennial celebration on September 20, 2020.

To learn more about the Mother Cabrini Health Foundation, click here.