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What is SSVP?

What is SSVP?
The Society of Saint Vincent de Paul (SSVP) is a lay Catholic organisation of women and men, who are committed to volunteer their time and resources towards offering person-to-person help to all those in need. The Society is primarily funded from donations which could be in cash or materials. Founded in 1833 by a group of young laymen.

Our path
From the beginning, the Society has been under the patronage of Saint Vincent de Paul, a great saint, well-known for his works of charity. The members of the Society of Saint Vincent de Paul maintain the Vincentian spirit. Their vocation rests on two basic principles: continuing prayer (deepening their faith) and the meeting with Christ through the poor. These principles lead them to serve the very poorest with a deep respect, no matter where they come from, or what they believe, developing long-term and personal relationships with the people they visit.

Historically, the core work of the SSVP is the home visit. From the very beginnings of the Society, Blessed Frédéric Ozanam (the leading co-founder) and his companions, went to the poor, visiting them at home in the deprived districts of Paris. This continues today, as the volunteers go to seek people in need, wherever they live: in their homes, on the street, in shelters, in hospital or in prison.

The activity of the Society is always based around love of neighbour, in the local community. Volunteers work in their own area, and respond to local needs. This means that the Society’s work around the world is extremely varied: health, agriculture, education, housing, employment support, help for elderly, disabled, isolated or excluded people, and more. Funded by donations, it also provides emergency aid and rehabilitation for victims of natural or humanitarian disasters, and finances development projects.

What is a “Conference”
The “Saint Vincent de Paul Conference” is the basic unit of the Society. It consists of individual members forming a group. Conferences work independently, in collaboration with a Council that brings together several local, regional or national Conferences in a structure that varies from country to country.  Volunteers meet regularly (once or twice weekly or monthly), to pray, organize and discuss their work on behalf of the poor in their local community. Each Conference is normally linked to a Catholic parish.

The Society of Saint Vincent de Paul and Saint Dominic Catholic Church, Yaba
The Society of Saint Vincent de Paul founded a Conference at Saint Dominic Catholic Church, Yaba in the year 1976. Over the years, the Society has actively provided support to the needy in Yaba and environs. The Society meets every Monday evening to discuss ongoing cases and provide for the needs of our clients. Our forte includes:

  • offering medical assistance for non-life threatening ailments;
  • providing counselling to clients who need emotional support;
  • offering prayers for the sick;

As a charity group, we rely on donations from corporate organizations and generous individuals to support the Society in meeting the needs of our clients.

Join us for our next meeting this Monday at the basement of the YCC Hall, Saint Dominic Catholic Church, Yaba.