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Photo, Front row: Sister RuthAnn Haunz, OSU, Veronica Sanchez, Jolanda Luna, Joyce Purdon Back row: Donna Kenney, Ruth Thomas, Darlene Sheehan, Jerry Sheehan
Congratulations to Sister Ruth Ann Haunz OSU, manager of the Francis Center Kids Café and her staff on receiving the Bobby Ellis Award from Dare to Care on March 20th. “This outreach ministry of St. John Paul II Catholic Church serves Kids Café meals to 50 youth from the Buechel and Hikes Point neighborhoods. Driven by amazing adult and youth volunteers and a passion to change lives through nutrition and education, the Francis Center also offers exceptional homework help and educational opportunities in a quiet, safe, and relaxing environment. In addition to its regular weekday programming, the Center offers summer tutoring, ESL classes, a community garden, Artistic Expression classes, health services, counseling, Golden Fitness Senior Exercise, and support groups for those suffering from MS and Parkinson’s. The Francis Center’s team is dedicated to improving health and extending hospitality to their neighbors." (Comments made at the presentation)

Sister Ruth Ann is the manager of the Kids Café. She recruits, trains and supports all of the volunteers and works with all of the families of children who participate in Kids Café. She regularly connects with Dare to Care and the USDA. She assists the Executive Director with the other programs Francis Center offers, and does much of the communication and publicity for the Center as well as works with grants and fundraising.

From the website of the Francis Center:
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It is in the Spirit of the Bishop of Rome, Pope Francis, that the Francis Center has been born. The Center is geared toward serving not only the Parishioners of Saint John Paul II, but all those who reside in the Hikes Point and Buechel Communities.

Among the various ministries offered at The Francis Center are:

Kid’s Café and Summer Tutoring Program
Family and Marriage Counseling
Health Services
Pastoral Care
Community Gardens
Most of these ministries are offered without cost to those ministered to, and in the few instances where fees are involved, they are very nominal.

The RECORD recently published an article on the Kids Café:
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