Wherever there is need the Society attempts to help. Through the generosity of the public, the SVP raises funding for this work by Church Gate collections, through flag days, supermarket bag packing, from bequest received in Wills and other generous donations. In the past year around €4million has been spent on assistance to those in need in the North East, helping to provide food, fuel and direct financial support as well as giving help in other ways.
Home visitation, providing financial and practical help
Home visitation remains the core activity of the Society. When a person in need approaches the Society for help, two members go and visit the person’s house to assess their need and how besgt they can be helped.
Some Conferences concentrate on visiting people in hospital. There are often in-patients in hospitals with no visitors for long periods of time. Our members aim to visit these people regularly for the duration of their stay.
Whether an elderly person is living in a big town or a rural area, loneliness can often threaten their wellbeing. Members of SVP call to people offering help support and friendship.
Assisting with educational support, helping students
The long term way out of poverty and social exclusion for many families is increased participation in education. By providing encouragement, information and sometimes the resources SVP tries to contribute to the quality of educational opportunities open to all the family.
SVP caring for homeless men in the North East
SVP has joined with other agencies in the local campaign against homelessness in the North East. Focus Ireland, Simon, and Threshold are all involved under the title ”Make Room”. All these organizations place emphasis on homelessness in their day-to-day operations on a national and local level. By pooling efforts it is felt more can be done. In 1984 members in Cavan town opened a new Conference, St Peter’s for the sole purpose of running a night shelter. Originally a ‘wet shelter’, this shelter now opens its doors to men in a variety of circumstances, providing food and accommodation for those who seek refuge.
SVP caring for the elderly in the North East
The Ozanam Holiday Centre in Mornington, County Meath was built by the Society of St. Vincent de Paul. It provides holidays for senior citizens from all parts of Ireland. It caters mostly for group holidays but individual bookings are accepted. All are welcomed, the holiday season is from May to September and in the off season the centre is available for self catering functions at weekends at special rates