Our Catholic faith calls us to find Christ by reaching out generously to those in need. SVDP has given me the ability to do just that. We meet people where they are, some hungry, some homeless, some fighting drug and alcohol addiction. We offer them care and compassion, hoping to communicate that they are not walking alone, seeking to guide them on the path to sustained independence. Our expertise is in case management, offering not only resources but also encouragement to the clients. Hopefully, as we seek to see Christ in them, they will also see Christ in us.
Being a part of the St. Vicent de Paul Society is an eye opener. I feel I was going thru day to day with blinders on and not really realizing that there is struggle and suffering not a half a world away but very close to home. Trying to make a difference an ease someone's difficulty is as much of a reward for me as it is to those I try to help. Specifically by seeing the gratitude in their eyes and the relief in their voices when we can help keep the light's on or their kids fed. It is spiritually uplifting for me to think that I'm apart of something so great and genuine. One incredible affect it has had on me is the friendships I have developed with the other volunteers, it is literally like an extended family that grows with no end in sight. It is an honor and privledge to be counted among the Society.
I have had the absolute pleasure of serving at SVdP in multiple capacities, as a program manager, Assistant Director of Programs and as a volunteer at the Open Hand Kitchen. SVdP provides a variety of inner city and rural offerings to meet and serve others where they are, from housing programs, thrift stores, vehicle donation, food baskets and daily meals - to events such as the annual coat drive and Santa Shop. The level of dedication, care and service provided by SVdP staff, volunteers/Vincentians, conference members is unmatched!!!
I teach theology at a Catholic high school. Every semester, I bring all of my classes to SVDP for an experience that alters the worldview of almost every student who attends. SVDP staff allow my students to see two different shelters and the soup kitchen. We also get to visit with a resident in one of the long-term shelters. When we hear the residents' story, it shatters stereotypes that many of my students hold about people who are poor or homeless. This hour-long visit is one of the most powerful learning experiences in my course. I'm very grateful for SVDP's efforts to educate our young people about the needs of marginalized people in our community.
Many lives are touched in central rural Kentucky by St Vincent de Paul, as there are conferences in Bardstown, Springfield, and Lebanon, KY.
I was introduced to St. Vincent de Paul by my 9 year old daughter. She had visited with a friend and donated blankets for the needy. She was so disturbed that there weren't enough blankets for everyone that she came home and organized a blanket drive at our church. We returned in a few months with an abundance of blankets that were distributed. We have since been back with a donation of several large boxes of Kool Aid and Gideon Bibles that were distributed by a Gideon from our church. We have worked closely with Linda Romine and Donna Young to organize our visits and have been made to feel very welcome. St. Vincent de Paul is a great organization doing great work for those in need. I am thankful to be involved and look forward to many more visits.
This non-profit touches many people that are definitely in need. It is truly a rewarding experience when one can see firsthand the fruits of your work.
The individuals that run this organization, are inspiring in themselves - perhaps because their work inspires them. Regardless of the church and its members in other capacities, the work that the church does for the poor and down trodden is beyond compare. If any Catholic is feeling lukewarm about their faith - this organization is one they should get involved with to reignite their passion for being Catholic.
I joined my parish SVDP conference less than a year ago. I have & continue to work in a number of other volunteer orgs since I retired. Without question I have found this the most rewarding experience in my lifetime. We channel near 100% of the donations received from parish members to those in need with a minimum of bureaucry. Several times a month going into people's homes, reviewing their needs, making recommendations for long term solutions, praying with them & keeping them from being evicted or their lights& heat turned off is truly a miraculous experience. One especially poignant example was an elderly woman, a Muslim Afgan refugee, who likely would have died if she had lost electricity for her breathing machine.
I got involved with the St Raphaels Christmas SVdP Food Basket program several years ago and found it to be very rewarding to be able to participate in brining a little cheer and comfort to those less fortunate than myself,Moreover is is refreshing to be part of the generosity that is shared by our parish that support SVdL and those in need at the local level. I began to attend the SVdL monthly meetings and was impressed with the outreach of the society and it;s inner workings with other SVdP groups in the area through networking resources of the different chapters to help those in need regardless of race, religion ,or creed, I joined the Society in 2008 and vollunteer each month when our chapeter serves at the SVdP helping Hands kitchen when possible, The consept of SVdP of extending a helping hand up vs a hand out makes sense and that is the primary reason for my interest in the Society of Saint Vincent dePaul