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Bishop's Charitable Assistance Fund Raises $185,000

September 10, 2020

Bishops Charitable Assistance Fund Raises $185,000

Sixth Annual Vita et Caritas Award given to Peter Eldredge,
Member of Family Advisory Council at Community Partners of Dover

(MANCHESTER, NH) – The 2020 Bishop’s Summer Reception to benefit the Bishop’s Charitable Assistance Fund (BCAF) will be held virtually on Thursday, September 10, via the diocesan website, www.catholicnh.org/bcaf. This year’s Reception caps a successful campaign that raised more than $185,000. Now in its 35th year, the BCAF has raised more than $6.9 million to assist organizations that improve the quality of life and provide the basic essentials for individuals and families in New Hampshire, especially the poor and disadvantaged.

Bishop Peter Libasci said, “We’re celebrating our 35th year helping citizens in New Hampshire. I thank you from the bottom of my heart for your generosity to others, so that they may have a brighter tomorrow.”

Alex and Lisa Walker co-chaired the 2020 campaign. Alex noted that the total amount raised was made up of “over 150 individual gifts, and over $20,000 in new or increased gifts.”

Addressing the Fund’s donors, Lisa said, “We want to thank each one of you who have made this success possible. Because you care, there will be thousands of people in our state who will see that others care, and that there is hope for a better life, especially during this time of pandemic.”

A highlight of the Reception is the presentation of the annual Vita et Caritas Award to Mr. Peter Eldredge. The award, given in memory of the late Ruthie Ford, recognizes a volunteer who demonstrates exceptional service to a non-profit organization assisting women, children and/or families.

Peter Eldredge has been a fierce and tireless advocate for people with disabilities and their families since the 1980s. He is currently a member of the Family Advisory Council of Community Partners of Dover, an organization that provides critical supports and services for individuals and families living with developmental disabilities and/or behavioral health challenges.

Mr. Eldredge is a single parent of a 46-year-old daughter who has a diagnosis of cerebral palsy and an intellectual disability. In addition to advocating for her services and supports, he also provides guidance and support to many other parents in Strafford County and across the state. At age 81, he continues to better the lives of families with disabled members by helping to guide the development of services to those in need.

“I’m very honored to be nominated [for the Award] by my friends at Community Partners,” said Mr. Eldredge. “I’ve volunteered at Community Partners for a number of years now. I do it for the joy of helping my fellow community members with developmental disabilities to hopefully lead a more fulfilling life.”

Mr. Eldredge also volunteers at Saint Ignatius of Loyola Parish in Somersworth. In addition to making sure the church is open each morning at 7 am, he provides maintenance, grass cutting, and proofreading of the weekly bulletin. He is also a founding board member of the Somersworth Share Fund, which was set up to assist residents of Somersworth and Rollinsford.

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About the Bishop’s Charitable Assistance Fund: The Bishop’s Charitable Assistance Fund is a not-for-profit organization within the Catholic Church in New Hampshire. The Fund enables the Bishop of Manchester, through a volunteer board of directors, to make grants to not-for-profit organizations, without regard to religious affiliation, for projects that help people in New Hampshire meet their basic needs. The Bishop’s Summer Reception, begun in 1985, accepts donations that serve as the sole source of support for the Fund. For more information about the Bishop’s Charitable Assistance Fund, visit www.catholicnh.org/bcaf.

DOWNLOAD photo of Mr. Peter Eldredge (photo by Raul Botha)