Society of St. Vincent de Paul accepting donations for Hurricane Sandy victims

From a press release from the Society of St. Vincent de Paul:

The National Council of the U.S. Society of St. Vincent de Paul is now accepting donations for victims of Hurricane Sandy on its website:

Donations may also be sent to the National Council office:

Society of St. Vincent de Paul

58 Progress Parkway

Maryland Heights, MO 63043-3706 

Checks should be made out to "Domestic Disaster Relief Fund."

Recognized by the National Volunteer Organizations in Disaster (NVOAD) as the 2012 "Member of the Year," the Society of St. Vincent de Paul provides a comprehensive, person-to-person approach to disaster, offering assistance to those in need, regardless of their income or circumstance.

"We are at work in a community before, during and after a disaster, and we're one of the few to engage in all three phases," said Roger Playwin, CEO of SVdP's National Council. "Moreover, our members help those in need long after those who have provided emergency help are gone." 

The Society's members, known as Vincentians, take a holistic case management approach to providing help, beginning with a face-to-face meeting to identify individual needs. Subsequently, an intake report is completed, followed by an assessment of specific needs, including a review of household finances. They then work one-on-one with the people and families to ensure that the plan developed is complete.

SVdP also collaborates with other agencies that may be able to supply additional resources or assistance. The organization has a Memorandum of Understanding with FEMA, NVOAD, and state emergency management departments. In addition, the Society has extensive experience directing and managing volunteers, and developing accurate and timely data for its disaster recovery services.

The Society honed its experience in disaster relief during the aftermath of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita, and, more recently, in 2011 during the widespread wildfires in Texas. The latter led to SVdP's introduction of the "House in a Box Program," which supplied survivors of the wildfires with critical items to furnish an entire home. 

One of the largest charitable organizations in the world, the Society of St. Vincent de Paul is an international, nonprofit, Catholic lay organization of more than 770,000 men and women who voluntarily join together to grow spiritually by offering person-to-person service to the needy and suffering in 149 countries on five continents. With the U.S. headquarters in St. Louis, Mo., membership in the United States totals more than 141,000 in 4,300 communities. Programs include home visits, housing assistance, disaster relief, job training and placement, food pantries, dining halls, clothing, transportation and utility costs, care for the sick, the incarcerated and the elderly, and prescription medicine. Last year, SVdP provided more than $660 million in tangible and in-kind services, made more than 1.5 million personal visits (homes, hospitals and prisons), and helped almost 10 million people regardless of race, religion or national origin.

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