Help Fill Our Virtual Hat

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Register Today for 5K Visit our Dedicated Virtual 5K Page


In the 1800’s when the Knights of Columbus was founded, times were very similar to what they are this year. Immigrants came from Europe by boat and settled in the Northeast. In particular, they landed in New Haven, CT. They came hoping for a better life, but instead they were met with hard times. A pandemic was in full swing, men were losing their jobs, many became ill and died. Families were struggling to put food on the table after the loss of the bread winner.

Father Michael J. McGivney, an Associate Pastor at St. Mary’s in New Haven, met in the basement of the church with a dozen men. They passed the hat and were able to come up with funds to help the families that were coming to him for help. What started out as a few dollars given to the widow grew to a sum of $500 which would provide food and shelter for two or three years. This was important because if the widow couldn’t demonstrate she could support the family, the state would step in and remove the children from the home, making them wards of the state. Since there was a dislike for Catholics, they’d be put into non-Catholic homes breaking up the family. This was the humble beginnings of the Knights of Columbus.

Fast Forward to Today

In 2020 there are families struggling to put food on the table. Hanover Township Food Pantry has always been there to help families and Mary’s Millennium Knights of Columbus has been there along side them for years, helping to raise funds which keeps food on their shelves. For the past six years we’ve held an annual Knights Challenge 5K the first weekend in October. Like Father McGivney, we had a Brother Knight with a dream. We wanted to increase our donations to the food pantry. He loved to run in 5K’s, so he volunteered to organize our first event. Since that time, we have given thousands of dollars to the food pantry with the help of our sponsors and participants.

This year, we are unable to hold a physical event due to these unprecedented circumstances. How will these families in need get the food on their tables if we aren’t able to provide the funds to Hanover Township Food Pantry? Who will step forward to provide if we can’t?

Runners Can Help

Are you a runner? Are you still trying to get some running in during the pandemic? Have you run in 5K events in the past and are missing that this year? Do you like competitions? Do you just run for fun? Are you exercising on your treadmill? No matter how you answered these questions, you can put your running to good use. Register for our event and run any time and any place between now and October 2nd. (Our event would have been held on October 3rd). After your run, you can upload your results to our website, should you wish to be entered into the competition part of the race.

Walkers Can Help

Do you like going for a walk? Staying active is important, even in a pandemic. You don’t have to walk any particular length to participate in our virtual event. Just register and walk any time and any place. Go for a stroll in your neighborhood or anywhere else. If you walk the 5K (like so many of our past participants have done) you can upload your results and we’ll reward the top participants with medals.

Everyone Can Help

How can I help – I don’t run or go for walks? Help us fill our Virtual Hat. Donations can be made on our dedicated race page or you can mail a check to us to avoid online credit card processing fees. See our donation page for complete details.   If you own a business, we are still looking for additional Sponsors.

Besides giving a donation, we need help getting the information out about this critical need for the food pantry. Help us by sharing one of our Facebook or Twitter posts with your contacts.

Dreams Can Become Reality

Father Michael J. McGivney’s dream which started with 12 men in the basement of St. Mary’s Church in New Haven, has grown into an organization with 2 Million members in 17,000 local councils, contributing $187.6M with 77M volunteer hours (valued independently at $1.9B). Our dream is to be able to meet our $5000 goal for the Hanover Township Food Pantry.

Just like those families were counting on Father McGivney for support, the needy of Hanover Township are counting on us.

Thank you for your Support

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