Northern Ireland news

SVP now receiving more than 2,000 calls for help each week in Ireland

Mary Waide, Regional President of St Vincent de Paul North Region, and Pauline Brown, SVP Regional Manager, are joined by Northern Ireland’s queen of comedy, May McFettridge, and TV presenter, Eamonn Holmes, to launch this year’s SVP Annual Appeal
Marie Louise McConville

THE Society of St Vincent de Paul is now receiving more than 2,000 calls for help each week in Ireland.

Last year, the voluntary organisation received a record-breaking 191,000 requests for assistance however that figure is likely to be surpassed this year as the charity has already received more than 168,000 calls - a 19 per cent rise on last year.

Launching the SVP Annual Appeal, `Impossible Choices', Mary Waide, SVP Regional President for the North Region, said that despite the promises of additional cost of living support payments being made by the government, there are many people who are struggling to meet basic family expenses.

"We are very worried that many families will continue to struggle into next year," she said.

"In the coming months the cost of living crisis will hit different households in different ways particularly with the rising costs of food, energy and housing.

"Add in the cost of celebrating Christmas and you can see how difficult life is going to be for those on fixed incomes, whether that income comes from government benefits or from low-paid employment.

"The most vulnerable in our communities are all facing impossible choices this Christmas which will undoubtedly stretch into the new year.

"That is why we are seeking donations to help families pay for food to put on the table, heat their homes and ensure their children enjoy the magic of Christmas."

She added: "We are appealing to people to please donate whatever they can spare to help SVP give the gift of choice this Christmas".

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Northern Ireland news