On Monday nights, students of St. John’s Jesuit High School and Academy bring food to underserved communities in Toledo, Ohio as part of the Labre Ministry—an organized effort amongst several high schools and colleges to provide food to those in need.
It was through Labre that St. John’s students first met the Medinas, a big extended family who was living in a house that was close to falling apart, and the students decided they needed to do something to help.
“When we see other types of needs on Labre, we sort of say ‘We can’t meet everybody’s need’ and we try to make it as much a feeding program,” said Phil Skeldon, administrator of pastoral ministries and outreach at St. John’s. “But we couldn’t turn our eyes from this family because we really felt like someone was going to die in this household.”
The school decided to allocate 20% of its annual fund drive to providing the Medinas a new house. After partnering with St. John’s alumni and their organizations, they were able to raise a total of $90,000 to purchase a house scheduled for demolition by the county and renovate the entire place.
After a year spent in transitional housing, the Medinas moved into the new house this past fall with the help of several St. John’s students.