Social Action Outreach

Since 1980, a group of teens and adults has traveled annually to one of the poorest communities in the U.S – Booneville, Kentucky – to engage in construction-type work on homes desperately in need of repair, renovation, or addition.

In late June, approximately 40 – 60 people depart in a caravan of donated minivans, pickup trucks, and SUVs packed with tools, food, and sleeping bags for the 11 day service trip. The group works with a local coordinator, who compiles a list of construction projects requested by area residents. The projects vary but tend to include renovations, new rooms, roof repairs, porches, or ramps for accessibility and safety. All of the tools and most of the food needed for the trip are contributed by participants, which allows the majority of the fundraising money to support the purchase of building materials from local Kentucky suppliers. Only a small portion of the funds are allocated for food and accommodations – no one goes hungry, but the meals are simple yet delicious after a day of hard work!

Starting in late March/early April, the group meets weekly to plan and prepare for the trip. It’s a self-led, self-sufficient group that relies heavily on volunteerism – everyone has a say in the process and contributes their ideas and enthusiasm. Each member is required to contribute $150.00, in addition to participating in fundraisers. However, no one is excluded for financial hardship.

Over the past thirty nine years the Appalachia program has proven to be an invaluable experience for our youth and young adults. Many of the adults that help supervise began participating when they were in high school. The trip reinforces and promotes teamwork, responsibility, patience, and – most importantly – an unselfish willingness to give of oneself to another. These are the values we want our young people to develop, and these are the values we are called to live in our Christian faith.

Anyone who has completed their freshman year of high school is eligible to participate.  If you have any questions, check out our website here or contact our leaders for more information!

Katharine Conroy ( or 860-510-3283)

Erin Weidman ( or

Stephen Gueble (

Three times each month parishioners provide an evening meal for people at this adult shelter for the homeless in New Haven. Meals are prepared in the parish kitchen. Volunteer bakers prepare deserts at home. Teens have been especially helpful in this ministry and are encourage to assist. Also a group of adults and teens meet early on Thanksgiving and Christmas morning and travel as a group to Columbus house to serve a holiday breakfast.
Contact: Sheree DiMario 203-469-9970

Volunteers pick up food from local merchants, sort, and distribute it to community families, soup kitchens, and agencies in New Haven. Thousands of pounds of food are recycled for the hungry and needy in this important work.
Contact: Eileen Charlesworth at

St George Parish has reserved storage space in the Church barn as a food pantry that supplies our Food Salvage program with canned and boxed food. In addition the food pantry provides emergency supplies for those in immediate need that come to the Church. The food is donated each Sunday by our parishioners attending Mass.
Contact Vera DaCorte at

Each year our peer ministers along with Claire Nicholls organize a service trip to Haiti. The peer ministers have an opportunity to live with and among the poorest people in Haiti, stopping at schools, orphanages, and medical clinics to provide a ministry of presence and support. In addition to the trip the peer ministers bring back craft items made in Haiti and sell them at the annual Craft Fair in Guilford.

For more information please contact Claire Nicholls at 203-453-3496 x 209.

St George Church is a sponsor of Homefront Day project in the greater New Haven area. On the first Saturday in May, volunteers meet at the parish hall to prepare for a day’s labor in an urban version of barn-raising. Homefront is dedicated to bringing hands-on help and hope to low-income elderly and handicapped homeowners through a one-day home repair blitz. Occasionally a community center or shelter is the project in need of repair. All skill levels are needed.
Contact: Tony at

Thanksgiving, Christmas and Easter provide special opportunities for generous parishioners. More than 1000 turkeys are distributed to needy families at Thanksgiving. At Christmas parishioners donated more than 1200 gifts in addition to food baskets to the less fortunate members of our community. This effort requires a temporary army of volunteers to collect, sort, and distribute food and holiday gifts within a short period of time.

Easter Sharing
Contact: Beth Kozarek 203-453-4945

Thanksgiving Sharing
Contact: Parish Office 203-453-2788

Christmas Sharing
Contact: Ruth Pinto 203-458-7884

The Guilford Job Network is an all-volunteer, non-denominational group formed to assist Guilford and nearby Connecticut community residents that are seeking new employment to find suitable new jobs on a timely basis. The Group serves as a networking support group by providing:
1) Periodic expert guest speakers on relevant job hunting related topics,
2) Job search counseling support from local volunteers,
3) Training, support and encouragement for networking efforts and utilization of other local job-hunting resources, and
4) A forum which can facilitate networking contacts among job seekers.
The Guilford Job Network usually holds meetings from 7PM – 9PM every other week at the Fr. Sullivan Center located just behind Saint George Church On-the-Green in Guilford.
All job seekers are welcome. No advance reservation is required.
Contact:Russ Allen at

Little Miracles is a volunteer Christian ministry of both St. Margaret Church in Madison and St. George Church in Guilford. It was started at St. Margaret’s in 1996 by a group of dedicated women who saw a need to help other women who, although financially or emotionally fragile, would choose life for their unborn child. We have continued this mission since then helping countless families with baby needs. We provide diapers, wipes, clothing, food & formula, baby furniture, car seats, cribs, bedding and many other items. We also provide for older siblings up to the age of five years old (and sometimes older) with things they may need. Everything we give to others has been donated to Little Miracles by members of our parishes and communities. We stay in touch with these moms until they are in a better place. We have clients in New Haven, West Haven, East Haven, Branford and Guilford plus some other surrounding towns.

Contact: Valeric LeAShane, 203-314-5677 at St. George, and Barbara Ciotti, 203-464-2644, at St. Margaret

St George Parish celebrates about 60 funerals per year. In an effort to give comfort to the bereaved families, Martha’s Partners provide a reception or luncheon for the family and friends of the deceased. Although this ministry is offered at no charge to bereaved families, only about half of the families take advantage of it. Often families are so grateful for this generous outpouring of service that they frequently make an unsolicited donation to the parish. Attendance usually ranges from between 20 and 100, with most being well under 100.
In addition to a core group of preparers and servers calls go out to many parish volunteers who are willing and ready to prepare favorite baked goods at home and bring them to the church hall for the reception/luncheon.

Contact: Parish Office 230-453-2788

Olivia’s cupcakes is a sub-ministry of Columbus House Ministry. Each month volunteers gather to bake cupcakes for Columbus House. Inspired by the dream of a young woman who had a desire to open a cupcake business and offer her talents to provide a treat for those less fortunate. Olivia passed away before she could realize her dream, however her dream is now fulfilled and thriving by the dedicated volunteers of Olivia’s Cupcakes Ministry.
Contact: Lorraine Mattie at

St. George Pro-Life Ministry is an answer to God’s call to affirm the sanctity of human life from conception to natural death. This is done through prayers and action.
A member of the parish is chosen by the pastor to serve as the liaison to the Archdiocesan Pro-life office which is the responsibility for the dissemination of educational information as well as the legislative agenda which pertains to the right-to-life issues. This office works closely with the Connecticut Catholic Conference and the Secretariat for Pro-life Activities of the National Conference of Catholic Bishops in Washington D.C.
Contact: Jean Bonato at

Knit beautiful shawls that are prayed over and blessed by a priest of the parish. Prayer shawls are distributed to those who need both comfort and prayers. Contact: Bonnie McManamy