The Rev. Bernice Warren, Director of Chester Eastside Ministries, named in the Chester/Community Spirit newspaper as one of the “2013 People of the Year”. Here is the full story:
Rev. Bernice Warren
There is no question that Rev. Bernice Warren has gone above and beyond with her work at Chester Eastside Ministries (CEM), but the extra hurdles she had to clear in 2013 earned her a nod as one of our People of the Year.
The Presbytery of Philadelphia has funded CEM for years, but the ministry now receives far less than it needs to operate at full capacity. Even though Warren’s hand was forced into shutting its doors more often and reducing hours for staff members, she has managed to keep CEM afloat.
There’s no telling where some residents would be without the work of Warren and the rest of CEM.
More than 350 households throughout the city are provided food by CEM; emergency aid is made available to about 350 people every year and more than 4,000 receive clothes through the ministry.
CEM also helps students in the community, offering the only library on Chester’s east side where kids can go and complete homework with the help of adults. During the summer, day camp is also available for kids from six to 12 years-old.
“In light of the school district struggling, I think programs like our after-school program and others act as support,” Warren told the Spirit during the summer. “We help them with their math and their reading and ensure they do their homework.”
CEM opened its doors in 1985. We salute the spirit of determination by Warren and others to serve despite the financial setbacks.