Carlow University Alumna Mary Hoffman Fricker and McAuley Ministries, an outreach of the
Sisters of Mercy, will be honored at
the November 14, 2013, National Philanthropy Day Award Ceremony, sponsored by the Western Pennsylvania Chapter of the
Association for Fundraising Professionals, at Pittsburgh's Heinz
Fricker will receive the Outstanding Volunteer Fundraiser award.
A former first-grade teacher, she was recognized for her
philanthropic efforts to reach inner-city elementary school
McAuley Ministries, the grant-making arm of Pittsburgh Mercy
Health System and sponsored by the Sisters of Mercy-who founded
Carlow in 1929-will receive the Outstanding Foundation award.
After graduating from Carlow in 1968, Fricker experienced
poverty firsthand as a teacher in West Mifflin. Today, seeking to
give back, she wanted to do something tangible. She asked herself,
"What does every kid like?" The answer? New shoes.
A happy student showing off his new orange shoes at Fulton Elementary in Pittsburgh's Highland Park.
For the past seven years, Fricker has worked to identify
Pittsburgh area elementary schools that qualify for the most free
lunches. She makes sure that each child in the school's entire
first grade receives a pair of brand-new Converse sneakers in
popular colors and patterns-which she herself selects and
The box isn't even open and this Fulton Elementary student already loves her new pair of shoes!
Over the years, Fricker has donated more than 1,000 pairs of
shoes to schools across the city. This year, on October 11th, 100
pairs of shoes were delivered to first grade students at Fulton
Elementary in Pittsburgh's Highland Park neighborhood.
"It's so uplifting," said Fricker. "Someone who didn't
even know them gave them a new pair of shoes. I hope it makes a
difference to them that they see kindness in the world."
Thanks to Fricker, 100 pairs of shoes were given to 100 students at Fulton Elementary on October 11, 2013.
McAuley Ministries is no stranger to kindness-and no stranger to
philanthropy, focusing on grant-making in Pittsburgh neighborhoods
traditionally served by the Sisters of Mercy.
This past August, McAuley Ministries announced $1.2 million in grants, mainly supporting business development, education, services to persons who are homeless, and capacity-building initiatives in Pittsburgh's Hill District, Uptown, and West Oakland communities.
Since its establishment in 2008, McAuley Ministries has awarded
more than $11.1 million in grants to local nonprofit
"These most recent grants exemplify our ongoing commitment to
helping create neighborhoods that are safe, healthy, and vibrant,"
stated Sister Sheila Carney, RSM, Carlow's Special Assistant to the
President for Mercy Heritage and chairperson of the McAuley
Ministries Board of Directors.