Saint Vincent de Paul in Mahoning County has been in existence for nearly 100 years. Over those many decades, we have met the needs of untold tens of thousands of people through the work of our Dining Hall, Food Pantry, and previously our Thrift Store. With your help, our organization has been a vital piece of the struggle to alleviate the horrible impact of poverty that our neighbors experience. To see how deeply involved in the community we are, please watch the following video “Meeting Needs, Creating Community.”
Every day, volunteers from your Church make our work possible. And on occasion the needy from your Church are those for whom we work. We look forward to the future with Faith and Boldness to continue to meet those needs. But to take the next step in doing so, we need your help to reopen our Thrift Store so that we as an organization can generate sufficient income to continue meeting the needs of the poor in our community through our Dining Hall and Food Pantry. As a result of rising food and other costs, as well as a 25% increase in the number of people who we serve, our costs DOUBLED last year, placing a great burden on our finances. We need your help to continue serving the most vulnerable among us.
At our Dining Hall, we served up to 1500 hot meals five days a week and breakfast on Saturday mornings last year. Annually, we serve well over 50,000 meals to families throughout our community. We provide a unique service that few others can do. Without our services, many hundreds of people, conservatively, would struggle to find a hot meal at least once per day in our community.
At our food pantry, many families are sponsored by our member churches and community organizations through vouchers and receive substantial food boxes from us once per month. We also meet the needs of hundreds of “Walk-ins” per week (our neighbors not sponsored by a Member Church of community organization). On average, we distribute more than 1,400 pallets of Emergency Food Assistance annually. Bread and other food is also available daily to anyone who needs our help.
Opening a Thrift Store will help us generate the income needed to continue providing our services. It will also allow us to provide low-cost household goods to those who need it and who previously relied upon us when we had our thrift store open in the recent past. But we need your financial help to open a new store. So, we are asking you to partner with us, as you have for nearly 100 years, in making a difference in the lives of our neighbors.
We are launching a Capital Campaign in our Churches and in the Community at large to raise $250,000 to open a new Thrift Store in a location that will both help those in need and provide us with resources to continue doing God’s work in helping the poor. Your generous support will be used, in part, for the following:
- Initial rental costs for the location and pre-operating expenses as we get the store up and running to serve those most in need as quickly as possible.
- Purchase of items inside the store to organize and display retail items for sale. These items include fixtures, kiosks, racks, shelving, etc. to sale high quality goods to the public and especially to those who need it the most.
- Signage for the front of the store to let our supporters in the community know that we are open and ready to accept donations from our generous community.
- A trailer and box truck to both pick up and deliver goods across our community.
- Other items as needed to run a successful store to help the poor.
Saint Vincent de Paul said, “Charity is the cement which binds communities to God and persons to one another.” It is this spirit of charity that moves us to do the work we do. We ask you to take these words to heart and let the Spirit of Charity guide you in making your decision to support our work.
To make our Vision a reality and to accomplish our mission, we are asking every member of our Parish Community to prayerfully consider this campaign and make a commitment to our exciting future.