Society of St. Vincent de Paul of Alameda County

Rating: 4.5 stars   22 reviews

Issues:

Location: 9235 San Leandro Street Oakland CA 94603 USA

Mission: The mission of St. Vincent de Paul of Alameda County (SVdP) is to provide direct help to anyone in need in Alameda County.

2011 Top-Rated Nonprofit
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Community Reviews

Rating: 5 stars  

1 people found this review helpful

These reviews were getting little dated but all the positives still apply in the free dining room. I volunteer there one day a week. "in the back", which is an area of the dining room were we provide table service to the disabled and to families. SVDP is well organized so they use the volunteers' time effectively.

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Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

A lot

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Quite well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2014

Rating: 4 stars  

I have been serving in the dining room for more than a year now since I retired; I am able to work regularly, one day a week where we serve a daily hot lunch to between 600-1000 people per day. We mostly serve single men but we also have families and disabled that come as well.

What really has impressed me is the culinary arts training program that St. Vincen's runs to train some of the disadvantaged who qualify for the ; they train under the supervision of Kim Blair and prepare and cook the daily meals; The 12 week program has a high completion rate and, most importantly, a high job placement rate.

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I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

seeing how this meal program helps and how the training program gets people placed in jobs.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

have more regular volunteers in the women's and men's centers and perhaps some work training programs for them

Helen, thank you for sharing your experience and for your suggestions about how we might improve. We really appreciate your feedback and your ongoing support! Thank you for all the great work you do.

Review from Guidestar
Rating: 5 stars  

My name is Katy Wright & I have been volunteering in the dining room in Oakland for almost three years now. When I first started, I always stayed behind the counter, because the "clients" kind of scared me. Then one day, I saw the person who was handing out the trays hassle some of the people about coming through the line more than once. Some altercations ensued. I was so appalled at this, that I decided to start handing out the trays. I felt it was importatnt to greet each person who came through the door with dignity & a smile. Now, I can't imagine doing anything else. I look forward to seeing our clients & have developed a rapport with many of them. This experience has been very rewarding for me on many levels. The staff at St vincent's are dedicated, professional, personable & supportive. I'm very happy to be involved with this organization & feel that we are doing something extremely valuable for the community.

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I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

seeing how much the patrons appreciate the food offered & how they respond so favorably to a kind word. I appreciate the staff & all of the volunteers who work so hard & tirelessly to serve the community.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

I don't know how to improve it.

Thank you for sharing with us, Katy! Your smile and awesome personality always brightens up the dining room - we appreciate all that you do! See you soon.

Review from Guidestar
Rating: 5 stars  

I am Judy Lockhart, a second-generation volunteer at the free dining room in Oakland. My parents both worked in the dining room well into their senior years.
The staff at the Oakland dining room treats every guest with respect and warm regards. This past Sunday, we served 1,023 plates over the lunch hour. Both the management and volunteer team members work in harmony every day to offer a balanced meal, a smile and a warm welcome to each person in need who comes through the dining room doors.
I feel blessed to have the opportunity to assist at the dining room and look forward to my volunteer time there.
Sincerely,
Judy Lockhart

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I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

seeing how the guests appreciate the daily meals served and the level of warmth and welcome they are met with upon every visit to the dining room. The comraderie among the volunteer staff, as well as with the management staff and the food prep crew, is very enjoyable.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

N.A. -- I am not aware of any changes that would improve the services provided by the dining room.

Judy, thank you for sharing your experience and history with us! Volunteers like yourself are the lifeblood of our organization - thank you for helping us help others. We appreciate all that you do!

Review from Guidestar
Rating: 4 stars  

My name is Sandra Blackman and I graduated from The Culinary Kitchen of Champions on 23 September, 2010. While attending culinary school at St /vincent De Paul I started to feel a sense of hope and pride because I was doing something positive to help my future professionally and to also help my personal life. I was learning how to cook more healthier as well as gaining a very valuabl skill to help provide for my family financially. I did a internship at the Marriott Hotel which turned into a a job and also gave me my self respect back. I have been working every since.

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I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

foodservice by securing a job and I'm now able to take care of my family financially.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

make the course a little longer.

Hooray Sandra! Congratulations on your job and thank you for sharing your experience! We are so happy for you and appreciate you spreading the word about the SVdP culinary training program and your subsequent success. Thanks for all that you do!

Review from Guidestar
Rating: 5 stars  

I started to help serving dinner to the most needed people of Saint Vincent de Paul in Alameda going to help from Saint Ambrose church in Berkeley, California. I am having some time now a days and I decided to use it being at service of others and I enrolled on the Saint Vincent of Paul. I have been helping since January of this year and my experience there is: The place is very clean and the people and team they have there, is very organized and with friendly and awesome attitude I just want to tell you that I can't stop going to help and that I have made great friends over there, at the place there are some many people in need of everything not only food but a friendly smile! there are also very professional and educated people there ready to be at service! and off course the money should be always a great help since the people that come there every day to eat is so grateful to have such a place to seat and eat something good and warm and you can see that they also have something or look for something to carry away some food for later that day!!!

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I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

yes as I was explaining above I am still going every Tuesday

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

I would pass the voice to get more people to help!

Rating: 5 stars  

I started to help serving dinner to the most needed people of Saint Vincent de Paul in Alameda going to help from Saint Ambrose church in Berkeley, California. I am having some time now a days and I decided to use it being at service of others and I enrolled on the Saint Vincent of Paul. I have been helping since January of this year and my experience there is: The place is very clean and the people and team they have there, is very organized and with friendly and awesome attitude I just want to tell you that I can't stop going to help and that I have made great friends over there, at the place there are some many people in need of everything not only food but a friendly smile! there are also very professional and educated people there ready to be at service! and off course the money should be always a great help since the people that come there every day to eat is so grateful to have such a place to seat and eat something good and warm and you can see that they also have something or look for something to carry away some food for later that day!!!

More Feedback

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

yes as I was explaining above I am still going every Tuesday

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

I would pass the voice to get more people to help!

Dolores, thank you so much for sharing your experience! We are so happy to have you and appreciate all you do for us. Thanks for helping SVdP help others!

Review from Guidestar
Rating: 5 stars  

I have volunteered in the St. Vincent dining room in Oakland for the last two years. You can see the fruits of your labor in action: feeding people who are down on their luck. The staff are friendly, appreciative, easygoing and supportive. The volunteers, likewise, care about what they do and enjoy being there. Working at the dining room has become an important and cherished and meaningful part of my life.

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I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

the dining room

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

do more outreach to attract volunteers.

Alfredo, thank you for your kind words and for sharing your experience with the online community! We are always looking for more awesome people like yourself to become regular SVdP volunteers and will continue to do so. Thanks for all you do!

Review from Guidestar
Rating: 5 stars  

I have volunteered at St. Vincent de Paul of Alameda County twice this year and I enjoyed going both times. It's a really great organization that directly helps the community. I look forward to my next visit to St. Vincent's!

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I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

seeing the grateful faces of the people that we help out everytime.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

expand so that it could help even more people in the community.

Ken, thank you for volunteering with SVdP Alameda this year! We appreciate your support and hope to see you back some time soon. Thank you for the great review!

Rating: 4 stars  

I went there one day to do some community service. I went in there reluctant, but I came out really happy. I am glad I got the experience of working here! It opened my eyes to see how many other people are less fortunate than I am. I definitely will come back!

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I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

it bring awareness to all of those that are less fortunate than I.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Not one thing :)

Thank you for reflecting on your experience with us, Devante! We really appreciate your help and hope to see you soon at SVdP Alameda. Thank you for sharing with the online community!

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