“The Society of St Vincent de Paul in Ireland has faced many challenges over its 176 years in the country. But the current COVID-19 pandemic is probably one of the most difficult,” said new president, Rose McGowan.
"Energy usage during the restrictions has increased as people are at home more, and many households will experience bill shocks at a time when they are on a reduced income. This must be factored into decisions regarding the application of the PSO levy in 2020/2021, as the proposed increase will add additional pressure to already struggling households,” said Kieran Stafford, National President, SVP.
“The concentration of job losses in low paid sectors means that the impact (of COVID-19) has disproportionately fallen on groups that are least able to endure a financial hit,” said Kieran Stafford, national president, SVP.
“In the coming weeks, we expect to see an increased demand for our support as families find themselves in financial stress and hardship,” said Kieran Stafford, National President, SVP.
Christmas puts serious strain on the resources of those who seek help from the SVP.
Just ten minutes a day of reading with children of all ages can help create readers for life and make a crucial difference to their future.
The charity stated that if revenue is raised from carbon taxes in Budget 2020 it must be ring-fenced for a Just Transition Fund and measures to protect low income households from energy price hikes.
The report finds that while HAP is intended to help families pay for a place to live, the reality is that HAP is so low that many cannot afford private rental accommodation.
The conference will facilitate discussion on challenges and opportunities facing charity retail in 2019, for example how SVP charity shops might approach trading in the global phenomenon called the “experience economy”.
“This report shows Ireland has a long way to go in creating pathways to sustainable, decent and family friendly employment which will address the growing issue of in-work poverty among lone parents” – Dr Tricia Keilthy, SVP.
SVP is still receiving an average of 1000 calls for help every day from worried families in the run-up to Christmas and is particularly concerned about some people in private rented accommodation.
Data from Eurostat show that among EU peer countries Ireland has the second highest rate of households who cannot afford to adequately heat their home and the highest percentage of utility arrears.
“Today was a step in the right direction, but we have a long way to go” – SVP.
“People are already trying to pay back huge energy bills after the ‘Beast from the East’ hit and now, with further hikes on top of that, many simply won’t be able to cope” – Bishop Denis Nulty.
You can help prevent someone with enormous potential from dropping out of college just because they can’t afford the day-to-day expenses of student life.
SVP will look sympathetically on requests for assistance with high heating bills.
“Based on the experience of our 11,000 members, we are willing to engage with Government to relate how future policies should be poverty proofed and work for those families that are struggling,” - Kieran Stafford, SVP National President.
The Portaferry native will have responsibility for the Society’s 1850 volunteers, 70 paid staff and 32 shops in Northern Ireland.
“Back-to-school this week has been a really exciting time for lots of children and their parents. But for many low income and struggling households, the preparation for the new school year has been a huge source of stress and anxiety”.
The groups being targeted include entrants from under-represented socio-economic groups and communities.
SVP members regularly visit families who put off paying bills, fall into debt, or sacrifice spending on food and other essentials to cover school costs such as events, exams, curricular-based sport and music, trips and equipment.
Special edition of SVP Bulletin highlights how Corrie's death “sparked a national conversation about homelessness but many campaigners feel the situation has not improved since then.”
Proposed 36% increase in the Public Service Obligation Levy (PSO) will wipe out almost 50% of recent savings for electricity customers.
SVP seriously concerned at the shortage of local authority housing as numbers on waiting list jumps dramatically.
“The opportunity to realise a fair, inclusive and sustained recovery for the people it assists is being eroded by the absence of a new government.”
Ten charities honoured including Trócaire, Christian Aid, Habitat NI, Tear Fund and Concern.
Between now and Christmas, in the region of 140,000 people throughout the country will be visited by SVP volunteers.
Measures needed to deal with the critical shortage of social housing.
The battle against poverty is one we can win if we do it as a united community: Peter Robinson.
SVP advocating for a living income in and out of work, reduced child poverty and better energy affordability.