ST Vincent de Paul Gathering in Armagh
St Vincent de Paul Armagh area hosted its first in person gathering since the beginning of the pandemic, with 60 guests attending an informative evening in preparation for helping the most vulnerable in our communities this winter.
Brendan Hennessy of SVP’s Membership Support team travelled from Cork to present a session on how to evaluate and calculate the help those on benefits may require. Brendan said: “It’s very important for the members in our local Conferences to keep up to date with how best they can help those who approach SVP for help. For instance, I know myself now that my children are teenagers, it would be difficult for me to know the price of a pack of nappies off the top of my head. As a Society we have developed useful tools for our members so they can evaluate and calculate average incomes and expenditures of potential clients without compromising personal information and ensuring their dignity is intact.”
Brendan McKernan, SVP Armagh Area President, said: “It was wonderful to welcome so many SVP members to our first face to face Area Gathering since early 2020. Whilst we continued to host meetings via Zoom, it just wasn’t the same so for some people who have been members of SVP for more than 40 or 50 years to meet again safely was heartwarming for them.
“It was important to provide those attending with vital information for recommencing home visitation in the local communities so our members are well equipped when assessing what assistance clients may need. We are facing what we are predicting to be one of the worst winters with increased inflation and rising energy and food costs so we want to be prepared for the rise in the number of people approaching SVP for help and make sure they get the right help at the right time.”
SVP is an international charity and the largest voluntary charity in Ireland. SVP members in Northern Ireland work in all communities to support people whatever their background, who are experiencing poverty and social exclusion, promoting self-sufficiency and working for social justice.
Every year SVP spends approximately £3 million to help those experiencing poverty in Northern Ireland. Last year, SVP responded to tens of thousands of calls for assistance from members of the public.
If you would like more information about becoming a member of SVP, becoming a volunteer in your local Vincent’s shop or if you would like the Society’s help, please visit www.svpni.co.uk, email [email protected] or tel 028 9035 1561.