My journey as a member of the St Vincent de Paul Society began as a Year 9 volunteer at the Kew East Vinnies store, sorting out donations in the back room on a Wednesday evening as part of my Duke of Edinburgh volunteering hours. Once I began attending university, a friend and I began volunteering every second Saturday with the Soup Van in North Melbourne and loved being able to interact with both volunteers and those we were assisting. Whilst at university I was also looking for opportunities to volunteer and become involved in internationally-focused works as I was studying an International Relations degree and wanted to put my knowledge into action. I met a member of Vinnies who put me in touch with the then National Twinning Coordinator who offered me the position on a committee. I know it is sometimes thought that Vinnies is an aging organisation, but we have around 28,000 young people between the ages of 18 and 32 involved across the Society.
There are so many aspects to the Good Works that Vinnies are involved with, not just on a national level but internationally. I am a member of the Deepdene/Balwyn Parish Conference and also a member of the Overseas Partnership Advisory Committee (OPAC) to the Vinnies National Council for the past 4 years. I have spent most of my time on the OPAC overseeing the Assist a Student program. Assist a Student is a program with a focus on the importance of education to young people. We recognise that access to education is a proven way of assisting individuals to reach their full potential and is a pathway to breaking the cycle of poverty. We support students at all levels of education (Primary, Secondary and Tertiary) in our partner countries. This program is managed by conferences on the ground in our partner countries and is highly valued by both conferences and beneficiaries.
As Twinning Coordinator for the Deepdene/Balwyn Conference I communicate with our twinned conferences in Myanmar, India and the Philippines. We support our twins through twinning grants to help with the costs of running their conferences, and also by funding projects that are sent across from our partner countries.
Through the funds we receive from the Winter Appeal we are able to continue to support our community both within Victoria and overseas.
Donations to the St Vincent de Paul Winter Appeal may be made by:-
Credit card or PayPal
Visit vinnies.org.au/winterappeal When donating online, please remember to nominate your Parish St Vincent De Paul Conference as:
- Deepdene/Balwyn Conference 404,
- Camberwell Conference 401, or
- Surrey Hills 393 Conference.
This information may be inserted in the “comments” field at the bottom of the online donation form.
Telephone on 13 18 12
Please advise the operator of your Parish St Vincent De Paul Conference as:
- Deepdene/Balwyn Conference 404,
- Camberwell Conference 401 or
- Surrey Hills Wattle Park Conference 393
Electronic Fund Donations may be made to the following account at Vinnies Box Hill:
Account Name: SVDP Vic Inc – GIFT FUND
BSB – 063003 and Account Number – 10081787
The Description – in the reference field please include the local conference numbers as:
- Reference No 404 (for Deepdene/Balwyn Conference)
- Reference No 401 (for Camberwell)
- Reference No 393 (for Surrey Hills)
We recommend that you print out a Confirmation Notice for your records
By cash or cheque
Donations may be sent to PO Box 786, Kew, Vic 3101. Please make your cheque payable to St Vincent de Paul.
Vinnies Winter Appeal Collection
will be held at all Masses on the weekend of 19/20 June 2021
(Covid-19 regulations permitting)
All donations over $2.00 are tax deductible. If you require a tax receipt, please ensure you clearly write your name and address when remitting your donation.
If you would like to learn more about the works of St Vincent de Paul visit the Vinnies website.
By Hannah McIntosh
National Assist a Student Coordinator
Deepdene/Balwyn Conference Twinning Coordinator