Neumann University’s food bank for students, the Knights’ Pantry, is a prominent sustainability initiative on the Aston campus. Pantry founders are Professor Rina Keller, left, and Mary Beth Davis. (COURTESY OF NEUMANN UNIVERSITY)
ASTON — The Catholic Climate Covenant has recognized Neumann University as one of the top three Catholic campuses in the country for climate action and environmental sustainability.
Announcing its first U.S. Laudato Si’ Champions Awards, named in honor of the environmental encyclical by Pope Francis, the Catholic Climate Covenant noted that Neumann’s efforts “have fostered a culture of responsibility and sustainability throughout the institution … and highlight the power of collective action in creating a more sustainable campus.”
Catholic Climate Covenant is a national nonprofit that promotes environmental sustainability among U.S. Catholic communities. At a July 27 conference, it named award winners in 10 categories, including universities, businesses, schools, parishes and religious orders, according to a press release.
The organization specifically acknowledged Neumann’s creation of a sustainability action plan, sharing excess food with students and families to reduce food waste, new strategies for recycling on campus, new modules of study and programs on ecological education, and three new initiatives on ecological spirituality.
The winner in the university category was Loyola University in Chicago with Saint Peter’s University in Jersey City and Neumann receiving honorable mentions.
According to Sr. Pat Hutchison, Etsuko Hoshino-Browne and Jess Webster, co-chairs of the Sustainability Advisory Council, “Receiving honorable mention from Catholic Climate Covenant affirms the work we are doing and encourages us to intensify our efforts to care for our common home. In addition, the award draws attention to the efforts we are making to raise awareness and promote sustainability within our campus community. We hope that this recognition will encourage more faculty, staff, and students to become actively engaged.”
Nominations were submitted by Catholic Climate Covenant supporters, partners, members of religious orders, and the public. A volunteer committee selected the winners based on a series of criteria, including fidelity to the goals of the Laudato Si’ Action Platform, faith-focused work toward sustainability, level of difficulty and scope, and the level of commitment required by the work, according to a press release.
Neumann University’s commitment to care for creation is rooted in its core values of reverence and stewardship. Formal structures to support this commitment evolved in the 1990s and continue today with support from the Sustainability Advisory Council and the Neumann Institute for Franciscan Studies Committee.
Learn more about Neumann University at http://www.neumann.edu.
Round four of Delco Green Ways Grant Program’s application period opens this week
Delaware County is offering a fourth round of its municipal grant program for open space, trails, and recreation.
The grant program, Delco Green Ways, makes funds available to municipalities, and nonprofit organizations working with municipalities, for projects that advance the goals of the Delaware County 2035 Open Space, Recreation and Greenway Plan: Conserve, Enhance, Connect, according to a press release.
Building upon the success of the previous rounds, the fourth round of the Delco Green Ways Grant Program is tailored to meet the unique needs of Delaware County communities.
The program includes four broad funding categories, including: “Conserve” (open space and natural features); “Enhance” (environmental and recreational uses); “Connect” (communities, cultural/historic resources, and natural features); and “Planning and Design” (future amenities in a prioritized, strategic fashion), according to a press release.
The ease of application remains, as do the kinds of projects eligible for funding.
Eligible municipal or multi-municipal projects may include fee simple acquisition of land, conservation or trail easements on private land, capital improvements to existing public parkland, re-greening efforts, construction of trails, and plans such as comprehensive open space plans, feasibility studies, design and engineering plans, according to a press release.
The application period for Round 4 of the Green Ways Grant Program officially closes at 5 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 29. Awards will be announced by county council later in the fall.
During the open application period, two virtual Q&A sessions have been scheduled for 6-7 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 7 and for 2- 3 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 12.
A comprehensive list of eligible project types, program guidelines, sample grant applications, and the online application are available on the Delco Green Ways Grant Program website at http://delcopa.gov/greenways.
Two Delco babies declared winners in Wildwoods’ annual Baby Parade
The Wildwoods’ 113th annual Baby Waddle Contest and Baby Parade were fun-filled events, full of smiles and loveable youngsters from across the tri-state area.
Two Delaware County babies under 12 months old were so adorable that they won in the Cutest Baby Boy category. J.J. Renz of Havertown won first place and Luke Chew of Wallingford third place. Remy Farr of Philadelphia placed second.
The Wildwoods Baby Parade, held on July 26, attracted some of the region’s cutest children, along with creative floats, decorated carriages and wagons, and crowds of parents, family, friends, and vacationers all taking part in the festivities and admiring the costumed youngsters, according to a press release.
The Wildwoods Baby Parade has been a time-honored Jersey Shore tradition since 1909, and this year’s event demonstrated that this is still one of the Wildwoods’ most anticipated and popular summertime events for families, according to a press release.
Amvets Post hosts benefits information session for veterans
The Department of Veterans Affairs will host a complimentary benefits information seminar on Thursday, Aug. 17 at Amvets Post #118, 211 N. Morton Ave., Morton.
The presentation will begin at 10 a.m. and will be followed by individual consultations at 11 a.m.
The seminar is open to all veterans, with no registration or RSVP needed. Vets do not have to be a member of the post to attend.
Veterans are asked to bring ID and as much documentation as possible. There is plenty of free off-street parking in the post’s lot.
Ridley Township offers eligible seniors rubbish/sewer rebate
The Ridley Township commissioners will offer homeowners who qualify for the Pennsylvania Property Tax Rebate (PA-1000) a partial refund of their rubbish and/or sewer fees up to $200.
At the July meeting, commissioners unanimously passed ordinances increasing the municipal rebate from $150 to $200: $75 for rubbish and $125 for sewer fees.
“Since 2006, thousands of Ridley Township senior citizens and neighbors received more money back in their pockets, thanks to these state and local programs,” said Bob Willert, commissioners president. “Both rebates help eligible families make ends meet, many of them on fixed incomes.
“It is also an indirect investment in local businesses, allowing families to spend more on other necessities. As the first rebate checks of the year are sent out, I encourage all eligible residents to apply if they haven’t done so already.”
Residents, who meet certain criteria, can apply for the rebate.
To apply, go to http://mypath.pa.gov or complete the PA-1000 paper application available online to print and mail, or visit state representatives’ offices.
The rebate program benefits eligible Pennsylvanians age 65 and older, widows and widowers age 50 and older, and people with disabilities age 18 and older. To be eligible, the income limit is $35,000 yearly for homeowners and $15,000 annually for renters.
Once residents receive their 2022 PA-1000 check or direct deposit and pay their 2023 “Township of Ridley” real estate tax bill, they can apply for the township rebate.
When they receive their PA-1000 rebate check or notice of direct deposit, they should bring it to the township treasurer/tax collector’s office at the municipal building and complete the necessary refund form.
Anyone with questions or needing additional assistance, can contact the township office at 610-534-4807.
Families invited to Broadway on the Lawn
Swarthmore United Methodist Church and the Viviana Theatre Group will host “Broadway on the Lawn” outside of Swarthmore UM Church, 129 Park Ave., Swarthmore, on Friday, Aug. 4 at 7 p.m.
Families are invited to bring their dinner and a lawn chair to enjoy this free family-friendly event.
If it rains, the event will be held in the sanctuary.
Readers can send community news and photos to Peg DeGrassa at firstname.lastname@example.org/.