Vinnies is a lay catholic organisation which provides emergency relief to those in need.
In addition to Subiaco our territory extends to Shenton Park, Daglish, East and West Perth as well as the city.
We have sensational support from the parish of St Josephs Subiaco through food and money donations to complement our fundraising through our sausage sizzles and September Street Appeal. Monsignor Long and the parish council are equally supportive providing monthly donations, the Poor Box money and candles income and expenses which we look after .
Some of us also officiate at weekend Masses in a ‘meet and greet’ capacity.
We have also offered to assist any parishioners who may require assistance on a strictly confidential basis.
What do we do with Donations?
The Call Centre at our head office emails individual conferences up to 4 client visits a day and we are 1 of 75 conferences. In the last financial year Vinnies assisted some 40,000 West Australians and all are treated in the strictest of confidence.
- food and supermarket vouchers. Woolies, Coles, IGA and Farmer Jacks. Our food pantry is in the bell tower of the church.
- clothing vouchers to be used at any one of our 48 retail stores
- furniture, bed and kitchen packs. Its not uncommon to visit someone in new accommodation whose only possession is a sleeping bag.
- assistance with bills and rent. Synergy and Alinta help us in this regard.
- financial counselling. Suzanne Long is our go-to guru and does amazing work. When you’re on a disability pension of $570 per fortnight you really need to know how to budget.
- You don’t have to be poor to be poor. I’m talking about loneliness. Sometimes a friendly face and a chat is very welcome.
- Our assistance hotline is 1300 794 054
We meet on Tuesday night at 7pm in the Upper Room at St Josephs office.
We have a set agenda which starts and ends with prayers.
Each week one of the committee is selected to provide a spiritual reading which includes Mgr Kevin Long our spiritual advisor.
The treasurer provides a report and we discuss visitations for the week and any follow up visits to keep informed and to educate each other on how we can do our role better.
Danny Cloghan is currently President of our local Conference.
A Brief Word on The Society’s Founder: Blessed Frederic Ozanam
“The question which is agitating the world today is a social one. It is a struggle between those who have nothing and those who have too much. It is a violent clash of opulence and poverty which is shaking the ground under our feet. Our duty as Christians is to throw ourselves between these two camps in order to accomplish by love what justice alone cannot do”.
Those words, spoken in 1834 by the Founder of the Society of St.Vincent de Paul, Frederic Ozanam, remain accurate in today’s world. Frederic was 20 years old when he began the Society with a number of friends in Paris on April 23, 1833. He made that defining statement a year later. It encompasses the spiritual ethos of the Society and its focus on working for social justice. The name of St.Vincent de Paul was chosen for the new Society as its patron saint. From the outset the Society favoured a practical, direct approach to dealing with poverty. Frederic Ozanam laid down the instruction that SVP members must give of themselves, through their time, talents and resources to help the poor:
“The poor person is a unique person of God’s fashioning with an inalienable right to respect,” he said and instructed SVP volunteers: “You must not be content with tiding the poor over the poverty crisis. You must study their condition and the injustices which brought about such poverty, with the aim of a long-term improvement.”