Each week CBS 58's Natalie Shepherd features an "Everyday Hero." This week, her segment focused on Sister Madeline Gianforte, CSA, on the co-founders of CORE El Centro in downtown Milwaukee.
You can watch the full video and read a transcript of the interview on the CBS 58 (Milwaukee) website.
Cantera was founded 30 years ago in Nicaragua by two Sisters of St. Agnes, Sister Anabel Torres and Sister Mary Hartman. It is based on Paulo Freire’s belief in popular education where people determine for themselves how to work together to change the realities for hundreds of Nicaraguans. Cantera now has 29 different services ranging from holistic health to reforestations campaigns to learning activities to leadership training and a farm that includes beekeeping.
The Clean Your Closet for Cantera rummage sale events began in Santa Rosa, CA, by Alice Waco and Bill McGee, two strong supporters of Cantera. Board members in Baton Rouge, LA, followed the tradition and when I became a member of Friends of Cantera, Inc. board I realized that this was a way money could be raised for Cantera through Marian University and the Fond du Lac Community. The first event was a garage sale on a bitter cold Ash Wednesday in 2014 when $350.00 was raised.
Marian University’s Social Justice Committee now sponsors the event. Dozens of people bring items to the garage at the President’s office building during May. Many Marian personnel, sisters, and CSA associates help transport items to where the sale occurs on Memorial Day weekend. Students, staff, faculty sisters and associates helped sort items that covered over 50 tables in the Dining room and overflowed to the parking lot with racks of clothes and furniture items.
Reasonable donations are asked and people give as they can which helps many people in Fond du Lac who would not afford a couch or chair, etc. otherwise. Others donate more than an item would be in other rummage sales, knowing that it is a good cause. Since it is our 6th year, people come up to me with their donation saying, “I know the good work that this sale helps, so here is my donation.”
This year $3,225.00 was donated for items and two generous donors gave one-time donations totaling $3,000.00 making this year’s total of $6,225.00 the best year yet!
Personally, it is a gift to be a part of this event. I began because I am serving on the board and had an obligation to support the organization. Now I treasure working with the many people who support it and gather to work hard hauling items, arranging them for sale, and packing them up to go to the St. Vincent de Paul Store. They are the one who make this a special event, knowing the great work that the many Cantera people in Nicaragua are doing every day. I have been motivated to continue being secretary of the Board of Friends of Cantera, Inc. by my personal witness of how Freire’s philosophy has been lived out through the work of Cantera. When I visited Cantera in 2014, I met professors at the University of Managua who had been in gangs in their youth until they started being part of Cantera’s leadership program for teens. With scholarship assistance from Cantera, they finished high school, graduated from college and earned degrees allowing them to be professors who now work with today’s youth through Cantera. I pray that today’s youth who get assistance through Cantera will follow this example into the future.
The Spring Cantera newsletter is available to view here: Friends of Cantera Newsletter - Spring 2019
The Sisters of St. Agnes participated in the Celebrate CommUNITY 2019 event last February 16 at the Fond du Lac fairgounds. There was entertainment, fun and food from a diversity of cultures accompanied with songs and dances from 11:00 AM to 3:00 PM.
Milwaukee, WI - Sister Jomarie Zielke, has recently begun providing services two days a week at CORE El Centro as a “Life Journey Companion.” Fluent in Spanish and with a background in nursing and leadership in CSA, Jomarie receives referrals from CORE practitioners with names of people who wish to meet with her. Her full story and other news from CORE’s Development Director, Pat Bogenschuetz, CSA, are available in their newsletter at the link below.
Have you or your family wanted to take a trip around the world? If so, this event is your ticket to travel to far away places!
United for Diversity hosts this enriching event to CELEBRATE our differences, EDUCATE the community, and ADVOCATE for inclusion and diversity issues/awareness important to all our lives.
2019 marks UFD's 12th anniversary of bringing this family friendly event to the Fond du Lac community. We kick off the event with our traditional flag ceremony at 11:00. We are welcomed by city and county officials, the Brothertown dummers, dancers and singers.
Starting at noon, come enjoy live entertainment, free ethnic food sampling, children's activities, face painting, a scavenger hunt, and much more family fun.
There will be a silent auction until 2:00 p.m.
Food and beverage concessions available 11:00 am -3:00 pm.
Admission is $5.00. Children 12 and under FREE
Those interested in volunteering for our event, please go to this link to complete a volunteer form: https://goo.gl/forms/wva3vI0khvrgq46G2
Any individuals or groups who are interested in showcasing their diversity, but have not registered for a booth, should email their request to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Since 2002, CORE El Centro has provided a community that has few primary care providers with holistic health services for all ages, including stress management, acupuncture, reiki training, and yoga and meditation classes. Nearly 6,000 clients of all income levels are served annually, 79 percent of them Latinx. Read more.
CORE El Centro recently received the Nonprofit of the Year Excellence Award from the Biz Times Milwaukee. This award is given to a nonprofit organization in recognition for creativity and innovation in building a sustainable organization, excellence in teamwork and an outstanding dedication to the organization’s mission in the community. Here is a video of the announcement and Madeline Gianforte’s acceptance speech.