RICHMOND – Ela Calix, along with her husband Marco, was among the first seniors who walked in the door after the Mamie George Community Center (MGCC) opened in Richmond 10 years ago. Sadly, Marco passed away, but Ela still comes to the center on a regular basis. “I have friends at Mamie George. We are very happy to meet each other at the center. We talk, and sing sometimes,” said Calix with a laugh.
Calix is among the thousands of Fort Bend residents who are helped each year through the center, located in Richmond in a zip code with high levels of poverty. Generous donors will open their hearts and hands to MGCC at the Mission of Love Gala on September 9, 2021, from 6:30 to 10:00 p.m. at the Safari Texas Ranch, 11627 FM 1464 in Richmond.
The gala will honor Dr. Thomas Randle, who retired this year after a distinguished 20-year career at Lamar Consolidated ISD. Dr. Randle is a beloved figure in the district, known for putting children first while giving extraordinary support to those who serve as educators and staff throughout the district.
“This year, the Mission of Love gala gives us three noteworthy reasons to rejoice and celebrate,” said Gladys Brumfield-James, MGCC executive director. “We will honor Dr. Randle, a legendary figure in public education in Fort Bend County. We are celebrating our 10th anniversary of service to people in need in this community. And, we will enjoy dinner together, live and in person, rather than through a computer screen.”
Last year, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Mission of Love gala was held as a virtual event, bringing donors and supporters together through video conference technology. This year, the event returns to its traditional location at Safari Texas Ranch, with extra care to maintain safety.
“Since COVID-19 variants are causing concern in our community, we will meet or exceed safety protocols at the time of the event,” said Brumfield-James.
When Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston was exploring construction of the service center in Fort Bend County, the agency sought input from the community to determine its best use. The highest priority: a place where seniors could gather and receive help to maintain independent lifestyles.
Over the last decade, the Mamie George Community Center has lived up to that request by providing meals, gatherings and classes to keep seniors engaged and active. In addition, the center provides vital services for people of all ages: a food pantry, financial assistance, help for women veterans, and parenting education for young families.
Earlier this summer, the center opened its doors to let the community back in, while maintaining safety practices. During the worst of the COVID-19 pandemic, MGCC converted to home deliveries of meals and food to seniors, virtual interaction with other clients and drive-through food distribution. Nearly four million pounds of food has been distributed, with help from a devoted corps of volunteers, since the pandemic began.
Those who are unable to attend Mission of Love but still wish to support Catholic Charities Mamie George Community Center and the services provided in Fort Bend County may donate at https://catholiccharities.org/missionoflove/make-a-gift/.
For more information about the Mission of Love gala, contact Matt Johns at firstname.lastname@example.org or 713-874-6659.
About Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston
Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston brings help and hope to people in need, especially the poor and vulnerable. Through a network of life-changing programs that work together to alleviate poverty, we serve more than 100,000 people each year from locations in Harris, Fort Bend and Galveston counties. As the social services arm of the Archdiocese, we are guided by the Catholic faith to serve people of all beliefs in achieving self-sufficiency so they can live with dignity. Catholic Charities is a United Way agency, founded in 1943. We are people of faith, helping people in need.