Catholic Relief Services – CRS

Founded in 1943 by the Catholic Bishops of the United States, Catholic Relief Services (CRS) is the official humanitarian agency of the U.S. Catholic community. It is currently working in more than 100 countries around the world responding to human needs in the following ways:

  • Provides relief to victims of disasters
  • Provides assistance to the poor to alleviate their immediate needs
  • Supports self-help programs that involve people in their own development
  • Collaborates with religious and non-sectarian groups of goodwill in programs and projects that contribute to a more equitable society
  • Helps to educate the people of the United States to become aware of and to fulfill their moral responsibilities in alleviating human suffering, removing its causes and promoting social justice

For more information about the work of CRS, please go to their website at

The Catholic Relief Services Coordinator for the Diocese of Oakland works closely with the diocesan Office of Life and Justice to provide the following:

  • Local education on current issues of the developing world and CRS’s response
  • Promotion of CRS programs such as the Lead the Way campaigns, Food Fast and CRS Rice Bowl
  • Building global solidarity in the Diocese, through events, programs and projects
  • Availability for justice retreats focused on global issues
  • Resource to parishes on global issues


To learn about the CRS Rice Bowl Program click on your preferred language: English / Español

To make a donation to CRS Rice Bowl:  Donate / Donar


CRS Rice Bowl is the Lenten program that invites Catholics to pray with their families and faith communities; fast in solidarity with those who hunger; learn about our global community and the challenges of poverty overseas; and give sacrificial contributions to those in need. It is conducted in Catholic parishes and schools in this diocese as well as dioceses throughout the United States. Seventy five percent of the funds raised by this program are used by CRS for international relief and development projects, and twenty five percent is kept locally, part of which is distributed within the diocese in the form of grants for hunger and poverty abatement programs.

 For more information about CRS Rice Bowl, please go to

Grants are given to parishes, organizations and projects within the Diocese of Oakland that are working to alleviate hunger, either through food programs (i.e., food pantries and soup kitchens) or through addressing the root causes of hunger and poverty (i.e., projects dealing with economic development, anti-hunger advocacy and organizing, etc.). Non-Catholic as well as Catholic churches and organizations are eligible to apply. Our allocations committee considers proposals for up to $1,000.

We congratulate the 2020 grant recipient organizations, who were honored at a virtual CRS RIce Bowl Grant Awards Celebration this past January. Click on the links below to view the names of the current grantees and those from previous years:

Apply for a CRS Rice Bowl Grant

The diocesan Catholic Relief Services office will begin accepting grant proposals for the 2022 CRS Rice Bowl Grants the week of August 29th. The deadline for submission of proposals is Monday, October 3rd, 2022. Decisions on the applications will be made by the mid-November and applicants will be notified of the awards’ determinations soon afterwards.

For more information about the Rice Bowl grants and/or to apply, please download the documents below:

Please see the articles from The Catholic Voice about CRS Rice Bowl which can be found here:

The mailing address for the CRS local office is:

Catholic Relief Services
Catholic Charities of the East Bay
433 Jefferson Street
Oakland, CA 94607

For more information about Catholic Relief Services and its local programs, contact Marc McKimmey, CRS Diocesan Coordinator, by e-mail at or by telephone at 510-768-3176.