by SVdP Staff on February 15, 2011
If you are considering volunteering and are wondering if you can really make a difference. The simple answer is “Yes!” A single person that volunteers at the Society of St. Vincent de Paul joins forces with over 16,000 other people who volunteer their time and talents to help the homeless and working poor in Arizona. Why is volunteering important? Because every person can and does make a difference.
Why are volunteers so important?
Each year, St. Vincent de Paul moves over 10 million pounds of food through its food bank, helps thousands of homeless people get off the street, and prepares over 1 million hot meals for the hungry. All of this is possible only with the help of volunteers!
Volunteers are from every religious, ethnic and economic background imaginable. Some people volunteer once a week, some volunteer once a year; however, all volunteers share one thing in common: they want to help improve the lives of the individuals and families that St. Vincent de Paul helps.
There are many different ways in which to volunteer. Each one is important and gives to those in need. Areas of volunteering include:
The processing center receives donated goods and distributes saleable items to our thrift stores. Duties include sorting, quality checking, routing, pricing, and hanging clothing.
The loading dock receives goods collected by the donation trucks. Duties include unloading trucks and preparing them for the next day. The minimum age to volunteer for this position is 16.
Clothing, furniture and household items are given to the poor or sold at bargain prices through the seven different St. Vincent de Paul thrift stores in the Valley. Profits help fund programs that assist the hungry and homeless. Duties include hanging clothes, arranging shelves, answering phones and waiting on customers. All thrift stores are open Monday through Saturday.
St. Vincent de Paul operates five dining rooms across the Valley. Duties include set up, serving, bussing tables, and clean-up.
Ministry to the Homeless
This program offers showers, haircuts, hygiene items, clothing and counseling. Duties include schedule coordination, clothing and toiletries distribution, inventory upkeep, clerical duties, documentation and hospitality. Certified barbers needed.
Transient Aid Center
TAC provides assistance to travelers, whether families or individuals, who are in crisis and en route to another destination. Duties include documentation, assessment of needs and hospitality.
Use your skills to assist the various departments that support the mission of St. Vincent de Paul. Duties include clerical assistance, data entry, copying, filing, grounds keeping and special projects.
Ozanam Manor is a transitional housing shelter for homeless men and women, age 50 or older, and disabled adults over the age of 18. Volunteers at Ozanam Manor can help out with clerical tasks, case management, recreation and life skills training.
Medical & Dental Clinic
St. Vincent de Paul’s medical and dental clinics provide care to the uninsured working poor. Dental and medical professionals, ancillary health care professionals, med-techs, dietitians and counselors are needed. Bilingual volunteers are in high demand.
Each year over 16,000 people start off as just one person who volunteers and together they form a group that makes a tremendous difference in the lives of so many. Yes, one person can make a difference. For more information or to volunteer at St. Vincent de Paul, visit www.stvincentdepaul.net.