The work of the St Vincent de Paul society steps up a gear at Christmas, not just it seems with planned extra giving activities but also in response to local need.

In Springfield Parish alone, SVP have had 4 referrals in the last week, two of those from single mums, victims of domestic violence, who were being rehoused into unfurnished accommodation, with no support from local agencies they would have been without essential white goods and furniture – including beds for the children. SVP have been fortunate to be able to provide furniture to these families as well as cookers, fridge/freezers, washing machines and Christmas trees. Seeing the face of a child receiving an unexpected Christmas tree and decorations is honestly priceless!

The planned giving varies around the Diocese depending on the local need but often involves providing a small gift for elderly people we visit regularly, sending Christmas cards, holding Christmas parties, providing hampers of Christmas food and some hold a Giving tree to ask Parishioners to choose a tag and find a present for the child who’s age and interests are written on it. In some cases this provides a present to children who’s parents aren’t able to buy them anything and in most cases it relieves some financial pressure from the family.

Aside from all this many Conferences are increasingly busy over the winter period, hosting the homeless in Church halls, providing meals and ‘Vinnie packs’ of essential items.

If you know someone who is in need or would like to help, please contact Jenny on 07796 393131 or email jennyc@svp.org.uk