Saint Bernadette Parish

Roman Catholic Church - Surrey BC

SOCIETY OF ST. VINCENT DE PAUL

St. Bernadette Conference - founded August 1st, 2000
The Society of St. Vincent de Paul is an international Catholic organization of lay people founded in 1833 by Blessed Frederic Ozanam and his companions. It is inspired by our patron saint, St. Vincent de Paul.
The Society's mission is to live the Gospel message by serving Christ in the poor with love, respect, justice and joy. As Vincentiens, our values are to see Christ in anyone who suffers; come together as a family; have personal contact with the poor; and help in all possible ways.
What do we do?
Emergency food hampers are supplied weekly to any person(s) or family when needed. In 2014 we assisted 72 families, involving 188 adults and 80 children.
Street ministry teams are active each and every Sunday, supplying approximately 80 lunch bags per week, as well as at certain times of the year, like Christmas. We distribute gifts such as sleeping bags, back packs, toques, gloves and sock. In 2014, over 3900 lunch bags were given out.
Furniture is collected and stored, then distributed to immigrant and refugee families, and also to needy individuals such as those transitioning from mental health and drug rehabilitation programs. In 2014, we received furniture donations from 12 households and distributed to 11 needy families.
Visitation programs allow two of our members to visit the sick, elderly and disabled individuals. As a relatively new program, three visits were made to the sick in 2014.
Focused Family Assistance is a program in which we select specific families, who are usually immigrant or refugee families, and who are in dire need of help, and whom we feel are well motivated to improve their well-being. They are supplied with furniture and food as needed, as well as vouchers to purchase other necessary items for employment, bus tickets/passes. Sometimes funding is required for deposits for accommodation. In 2014, four such families were assisted.
Twinning is a program in which we arrange to twin with another conference in the world, and we assist with funding on a quarterly basis and communicate several times per year. In 2014, we arranged to twin with a conference in Haiti. We also hope to fund a work project.
Miscellaneous assistance that we have been involved in includes financially assisting foreign conferences involved in local disaster relief. We have also assisted individuals to attend their physician or pharmacist.
How do we do this?
- funds raised by selling vegetables after all weekend masses from May through November.
- direct parishioner financial donations.
- parishioner donations of furniture, clothing or other items as needed.
- special collection (green) envelopes provided in the box of yearly donation envelopes.
- Knights of Columbus financial assistance.
- St. Bernadette Elementary School food drives.
- members weekly voluntary donations.
To all who have supported us in any way, whether by direct financial contribution, donation of food, clothing or other items, and by supporting our after-mass vegetable sales, we offer you our sincere thanks!
If you are interested in learning more about the work of the SSVP or how you may be able to help, or if you know someone who may require a visit or our assistance, please:
- speak to one of the members in church today
- come to one of our meetings, held monthly on the third Monday at 7pm in room D of the Parish Centre
- call the St. Bernadette Parish office at 604-596-0566, requesting one of us to call back
- contact us directly by leaving a message at 604-785-4334 or email ssvp.stbernadette@gmail.com