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Vinnies seeks help in hard times

Tuesday, 8th May, 2012

WINTER APPEAL: St Vincent De Paul’s regional president Pam Sky is asking for donations to its Winter Appeal so that it can provide more blankets and help for people in need. WINTER APPEAL: St Vincent De Paul’s regional president Pam Sky is asking for donations to its Winter Appeal so that it can provide more blankets and help for people in need.

By Emily Roberts

Last winter St Vincent De Paul provided more than $175,000 in assistance for people in the western NSW.

But Vinnies is expecting to see even greater demand for its services this winter in line with trends over the past few years. 

In the Wilcannia/Forbes diocese Vinnies gave $176,072 worth of assistance between June and August, an increase of 24 per cent on the 2010 figure.

About $71,865 worth of energy vouchers were handed out, which was up 14 per cent on 2010.

St Vincent De Paul’s Regional President, Pam Sky, yesterday encouraged locals to give generously to the Winter Appeal.

“It is getting colder, people can’t keep warm. Electricity prices and living prices are going up. People are having trouble trying to survive,” Mrs Sky said.

“A lot more people are asking for assistance than they have in the past.

“It goes to the local area and all monetary donations go back to the local area.

“Broken Hill is always very generous.”

The cost of fresh fruit, vegetables and meat rose by more than 12 per cent over the course of 2010/2011, an increase three times the rate of inflation and more than double the increase in the median wage. 

“We all know that there is no quick-fix solution to poverty and it really does take people’s understanding, their compassion and money. Unfortunately, too many Australians will experience a long, cold and often lonely winter,” said St Vincent de Paul Society’s Manager of Community and Corporate Relations, Julie McDonald. 

“By giving to the Vinnies Winter Appeal you can make a real difference to those Australians struggling to make ends meet this winter.” 

Vinnies assists with long-term change for thousands of people through its services for the homeless, disabled and mentally ill. It also helps people suffering from family violence and disasters, and helps youths, migrants and refugees. 

Mrs Sky said St Vincent De Paul did not mail out its donation requests or do door knocks so anyone who would like to donate could send the money to P.O Box 203 or drop it into the centre in Argent Street.

All donations over $2 are tax deductible.

Mrs Sky also invited anyone who would like to volunteer to come and visit the centre.

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