What we do
Who we are
The Society of Saint Vincent de Paul is a worldwide organization operating in 155 countries providing assistance to the poor in the Christian Gospel tradition. The organization has operated in the Edmonton area since 2000. Please see our Western Region and National websites for details on our Canada-wide activities.
Your donations of material goods (furniture, household goods and clothing) and monetary assistance enable us to carry out our mission.
The Society is powered by volunteers. Donations of your time and talents are critical to this work.
All Saints Conference
They will continue to do the fine work they have been doing under the name of St John Bosco. President Marlene Hearn is seen receiving the new certificate from Western Regional President Peter Ouellette. In the photo is also Ed Schrader former president of the Conference, North Particular President Lynne De Zaeyer and Edmonton Central President Mary Dunnigan
St. Joseph High School Food Drive
Students of St. Joseph High School used the generosity of homeowners on Halloween to collect food items for our food bank. Students formed a long line from the school to our Distribution Centre to pass along the items they collected. Food bank usage is up greatly in Edmonton and we welcome the students and teachers involved who have helped us to help others. Thanks.
Fall Development Day
Thanks to all who played a role in our very successful Fall Development Day on Saturday October 15, 2016. We deeply appreciate the help of all who made it an enjoyable learning and sharing experience.
St. Frere Andre Conference did a great job of hosting again this year, and the abundant refreshments provided by Maria Lupul and the South Particular Council were enjoyed by all.
Our guest speakers, Natalie Magnan and Bettylou Kidder from Alberta Works presented information on the services available through Alberta Supports and Alberta Works. We also learned that the financial supports given to Albertans have not changed since the early 1990's and are very inadequate. SSVP may want to consider becoming involved in advocacy work.
Guest speaker, Brent Guidinger from Boyle Street Community Services, gave an excellent talk on Understanding Homelessness.
Special thanks to our presenters, Deacon Hyland (spirituality), Maria Lupul and Stephen Dufresne (Cadotte Lake project), Jerry Cavanagh (donations), and to Eleanor Saito for looking after applications for Police Information Checks.
St. Matthew Church Sept. 27, 2016
On Tuesday, September 27, the feast of St. Vincent de Paul, a Mass and commissioning ceremony was held at St. Matthew church. Thirty new member were commissioned. Fr. Paul Moret said the Mass assisted by Deacons Hyland Fraser and Tony Obleada. Deacon Hyland lead the commissioning ceremony. A time for hospitality and sharing was held after the ceremony. Approximately one hundred people attended. Thank you to the Particular presidents and the presidents of conferences for submitting names.
More pictures in our Photo Gallery
Council General has decided to make the global training modules available on line, from now on, in four languages: French, English, Spanish and Portuguese. The aim is to give all members of the Society of Saint Vincent de Paul an identical, consistent message, without subjective interpretation, but imbued with the spirit of the Society and describing the way our association works internally.
The links to these modules is here. The names are in French but the material is in English.
Field Law Community Fund Program
Our letter to Field Law.
I cannot express how absolutely delighted we are to be the 2016 Grand Prize Winner from the Field Law Community Fund Program.
Society of Saint Vincent de Paul works with those who come to us in need. Our Put a Kid to Bed grant will allow us to purchase 50 beds, as outlined in our proposal. That will bring much joy, comfort and dignity to fifty families.
We are heartened by your support, and motivated to continue helping others. Your kind and most generous gift will be used throughout the year (we do not have enough storage for so many beds at once!) and every time another family is presented with a new bed we and they will think of you and give thanks.
Our SSVP volunteers will celebrate your generosity as they play their part in the process of Putting those Kids to Bed.
Thank you again for the financial support and the moral support. Edmonton will be a better place for those families receiving your gift.
I also thank you for the reception which you sponsored at which we received your cheque for $10,000.
Society of Saint Vincent de Paul
Edmonton Central Council
Social Justice Committee
Easter Greetings Everyone.
I trust that you are all spending a holy and blessed Easter with your families. In my home, the get together happened last evening. Then, this morning at the 8:30 am Mass and it will continue through supper this evening. I like it when celebrations last a few days.
Our first "act" as an SSVP Social Justice Committee took place this Good Friday morning. A few of us went downtown and walked the Way of the Cross as we usually do on this day. However, this time, we wore our SSVP sashes and were granted permission to display our Poverty Sign before the walk started. Some of the members of the newly formed Social Justice Committee, St. Theresa's Conference are shown below.
Once again, Happy Easter to all.
Jubilee of Mercy Retreat March 19, 2016
Our response to Pope Francis call to Jubilee of Mercy retreat was well attended by Vincentians from various conferences – in total approximately 55 of our members attended the retreat led by Sister Gabriela hosted at Good Shepherd Parish.
We were first led by spiritual reflection that accented the call of mercy to us in our daily lives. We then formed groups of 4-5 to discuss the Parable of the Unmerciful Servant. Then we divided into pairs and reflected on the question of the mercy received to each of us by God. Finally, we as individuals brought our need or the needs of others to the front by lighting a candle formed the shape of a heart – the heart symbolizing the mercy we can extend to others and to ourselves.
Hopefully, this retreat provided a renewal of service with emphasis of mercy to those we serve.
Much gratitude to Western Particular Conference for their leadership in this undertaking.
Our Lady of the Prairies Catholic School
From Bill Wallis . . .
During Advent the students staff and administration of Our Lady of the Prairies Catholic School conducted a giving Christmas tree. Each class brought in gifts for children in need, such as scarves, socks, mittens, boots, toys, warm hats etc. In addition the school cleaned up and emptied out their lost and found winter clothing, snow shoes and so on and added these to the gifts that decorated a large Christmas tree in the entrance of the school and just before Christmas we were called. Three of us from the S.S.V.P. of Good Shepherd Conference collected these gifts which filled up a 1/2 ton truck.
These gifts made Christmas a special season for many needy children.
God bless Our Lady of the Prairies School, staff and students. They put their faith into action.
North of 60 Report for 2015
From Peter Ouellette . . .
Thanks to the generous support from Corporations and members of the Catholic Community in Edmonton, the SSVP North of 60 Project supplied food, household products and other items of necessity to those who have less living in Canadian Arctic Communities. This year, eight sea cans were shipped, supporting nine communities.
The program has grown in momentum and improved with more control in sorting and distribution of donated items. We are getting better.
The program has also expanded north east as members of the Society of Saint Vincent de Paul in the Eastern Canadian Regions initiate similar programs to support Arctic Communities across the Canadian North.
As we begin the planning for next year, we have increased the support from both Catholic and non-Catholic Parishes, as well as Corporations providing the needed transportation logistics that are necessary to continue. The target for 2016 for this SSVP Western Region program will grow to nine sea cans supporting 10 Communities.
Thanks to all who made this happen. Click here to read the full report.
Reaching Out Warm Hands and Hugs
During the weekend of October 24, the parishioners of Holy Spirit Church in Spruce Grove took Deacon Patrick Hessel’s message to heart and responded with a huge outpouring of items which they shared with SSVP.
The coats, boots, sweaters and scarves, in over 100 bags, will make a big difference in the lives of those who need—and those who contributed show again that when we care, and we share, we can make a huge difference. When the snow flies and the temperature drops, those who come to our doors being cold and lacking proper clothes will be warmed by the work of kind and caring individuals.
Thank you. Thanks also to those who helped us load the treasure, including Deacon Patrick, Chris, James (Youth Leader ) and driver Dan.
More pictures in the Photo Gallery
On Sunday September 27, the feast of our patron, St. Vincent de Paul, we gathered at Annunciation Church to celebrate. In the brief ceremony 19 new Vincentians who have proven their commitment to SSVP were presented with a Rule (our Rule and Statutes Canada book) from their Conference following an introduction and blessing by Deacon Hyland, Spiritual Advisor for Edmonton Central Council. Vice President Gail presented wooden fish necklaces to each. Seasoned Vincentians voiced and renewed their recommitment while the candle was held by John for our new members. Our family grows, and the work continues. Special thanks are offered to Mother Teresa Conference of Annunciation parish and President Marlie for hosting. The camaraderie shared over coffee was a delightful way to welcome the new and celebrate the experienced for all the fine work done!!
Field Law, operating in Alberta and the Northwest Territories, recently celebrated 100 years of serving and being involved in the community. In celebrating that anniversary they decided to distribute to non-profits and charities. The book created about their history and progress from a small operation to a major force was reinforced with several receptions at which the cheques were presented to fortunate recipients.
We at Society of Saint Vincent de Paul were one of those lucky people. Their donation cheque will help us continue to work with the poor. Our community is enriched by being able to assist others. The funds will help us keep our trucks on the road, picking up donations and delivering to those whom we have visited. Thank you Field Law, your 65 lawyers, and especially James Casey, a partner and moving force behind these developments. Thanks to the Field Law Community Fund Program, you are helping make Edmonton a better place to live and raise families.
Thanks to Catholic Women’s League and the signage courtesy of Hi-Signs, a member of the Fath Group, we are now driving our latest vehicle in service of the poor. In the photo is Larry after handing off the keys to a sparkling truck with beautiful graphics. Many thanks to all parties!!
Teachers of Edmonton Catholic Schools have chosen us as a recipient of their Christmas Social Justice Project. Their most generous variety of gift cards will help us help those in need. Thank you teachers and be aware that your gift to us is a gift which will help many families and perhaps some of the students sitting in your classrooms. Superb work Cathy Mrowka and ECT Local 54.
Thanks to the Stollery Foundation Grant you may have seen our newest vehicle. The fuel efficient and modern truck allows us to serve those in need more effectively. Thanks also to the Fath Family and Group of Companies for the graphics. We serve even better with the help of the community.
Congratulations St. Katherine’s Conference! On Thursday June 5 Red Deer hosted a combination Commissioning ceremony and wind up pot luck dinner. Father Joe did a grand job of the ceremony officially welcoming Leslie to their conference. Dan Roadhouse, President, invited and entertained Peter Ouellette, Western Regional President, Maria Lupul, Edmonton South Particular President, and Mary Dunnigan, Edmonton Central President. An impressive event hosted by a Conference which is doing fine SSVP work. Thank you all.
Catholic Women's League
Thank you to the Catholic Women's League of Canada, Archdiocese most generous recent donation. Coming out of their centennial anniversary celebrations of 2012, they embarked on a legacy project theme. At the April 14 Edmonton CWL Convention a cheque was presented, which will be used towards purchase of a light truck for pickups and deliveries. When Edmontonians see the acknowledgement on the vehicle door, all can note that the hard work of President Gwen Elliott and jCWL women is helping power the handwork of SSVP for those in need. Thank you CWL.
Edmonton Catholic School Board Memorandum of Understanding (MOU)
On December 17, 2013 at a full Board of Trustees meeting a Memorandum of Understanding was signed between the Society of Saint Vincent de Paul and Edmonton Catholic Schools, expected to last for ten years.. The purpose of this partnership is to support and encourage the two organizations to support each other’s charitable works. This is done through continuing to provide a working space at the DC for us, to explore and develop a mechanism for shared services, information and resources between partners, to provide students with service opportunities, and to pursue other common areas of interest as decided by the Alliance Management. On behalf of the Board the document was signed by Laura Thibert ,Board Vice-Chair, and Joan Carr, Superintendent; on behalf SSVP the document was signed by Bernie McCracken, President, and Mary Dunnigan, Vice President. Together we move forward.
Edmonton Public Teachers Local 37
On October 27, teachers from Edmonton Public Schools gave a most generous gift to our Society. Their cheque was presented by the chair of the Donations Committee, Mr. Anthony Walsh. We are fortunate to be among the wide array of organizations the committee helps, knowing that helping families and especially children in their homes, benefits those receiving our help in their schoolwork, education and Canadian society in general. Thank you teachers for supporting our efforts to help those in need within Edmonton.
Terence Mahon Clothing Room Dedication
On November 12, 2013 we were pleased to have a dedication of the Terence Mahon Clothing Room at our Distribution Centre. Terry Mahon, his father, was in attendance to unveil the plaque. This was done with the help of both Mr. Mahon and Archbishop Richard Smith. Every time someone uses our facilities, or our workers serve the needs of those who come, Terence’s memory will be remembered and honoured. We are most grateful to Terry and Noreen Mahon for their kind and generous gift in the name of their son. His strong spirit of volunteerism, and support of others fit right in with the spirit of SSVP. Gail Dumas (Community Development) presented Mr. Mahon with a copy of our Rule and Opening Prayer card in honour of the occasion. Darcy Knoll spoke highly of Terrence’s active life and spirit. Bernie McCracken, President, accepted the cheque on behalf of SSVP.