For the past twelve years, Pathways to Care has given shelter and hope to the homeless men and women who arrive at their facility seeking a safe place to recover from serious illness or injury. It is for their spirit of hospitality and respect extended to all who enter their doors, as well as the quality care each resident receives, that the St. Martin de Porres award is granted to Pathways to Care, a program of Catholic Charities of Central Florida.
Joseph Buranosky, executive director of Catholic Charities of Central Florida, Father John Bluett, visionary for Pathways to Care and pastor of St. Stephen Catholic Church, and Dawn Zinger, administrator of Pathways to Care, will be presented the St. Martin de Porres Award during a luncheon on Monday, June 24 after the Red Mass celebrated by Bishop John Noonan starting at 12:10 at St. James Cathedral in downtown Orlando.
Each year the St. Martin de Porres award honors an organization which demonstrates unbounded and helpful charity, offering hope to those in need. St. Martin de Porres, patron saint of social justice, devoted his life to the corporal works of mercy through the care of the sick and injured to the selfless service of others.
Pathways to Care, a program of Catholic Charities of Central Florida, gave 200 men and women a safe place to heal last year. In addition to a warm bed, nutritious meals, and transportation to medical appointments, residents also have the opportunity to receive mental health counseling, life skills training, family reunification, and referrals to other community services all with the goal of achieving future self-sufficiency.
Dawn Zinger, administrator of Pathways to Care, notes that while meeting the residents’ physical needs is crucial, showing compassion and sharing Christ’s love is invaluable.
“I watch our residents who come through broken not only physically but also spiritually. They don’t even want to look you in the eye. But after they are with us for a couple of weeks and see that we aren’t looking down on them, they actually start to look up at us. We see little miracles every single day.”
About the St. Martin de Porres Award
St. Martin de Porres, patron saint of social justice, devoted his life to the corporal works of mercy through the care of the sick and injured to the selfless service of others. The St. Martin de Porres Award is given to an organization which demonstrates unbounded and helpful charity offering hope to those in need determined by the following criteria:
- Promotes understanding and respect
- Extends friendship to all
- Works and prays for peace
- Enhances daily living through education, prayer, fellowship, and example
- Reaches out and embraces all cultures within local community