The Society of St Vincent de Paul is a Christian voluntary organisation, working with people in need.
Inspired by our founder, Frederic Ozanam, and our Patron, St Vincent de Paul, our members are involved in a diverse range of activities characterised by support and friendship, through person to person contact. We are committed to respecting the dignity and encouraging the independence of the people we are able to help with the provision of material and other support. We assure confidentiality at all times.
We are conscious that it is very important to promote self-sufficiency for those we serve, as we believe that it is not enough to provide short term material support, without also encouraging them to develop independence in the long term and the sense of self-worth this provides. When the problems we encounter are beyond our competence, we build bridges of support with more specialised agencies.
Our Society aims to provide a service to those in need, regardless of creed, colour, age, social or economic status. Thus, need is the only criterion used in deciding whether or not Society support should be offered. Advice is offered only when requested and Vincentians always resist the temptation to tell people what they should do. The manner of our giving is gentle and ensures that people do not feel unworthy because they need help.
The core of the St Vincent de Paul Society's work remains person-to-person contact. This involves the members in a wide range of activities,which include visiting (at home and in hospital), providing financial support, organising senior citizens socials, assisting with heating, grocery and clothing requisites, providing financial help for sick pilgrims to Lourdes, collecting furniture, carpets and other items,in good condition, from parishioners, for subsequent distribution to needy families, and providing an advice and budgeting service for those who desire it.
Our Society meets in the room above the old sacristy in St Patrick's and St Brigid's Church, Ballycastle, each Sunday morning at 11 am to discuss the relevant matters of the past week and the requirements of the following week.