The Minister for Rural and Community Development and Fine Gael TD for Mayo, Michael Ring TD has announced the allocation of additional funding of €60,000 to St Vincent De Paul (SVP), bringing the total provided by his Department to €1,410,000 in the past 12 months. This funding recognises the contribution of SVP in fighting poverty through the provision of practical assistance to people in need across Ireland.
Minister Ring said: “Christmas places significant financial pressure on families and this funding will directly assist families in the challenging post-Christmas period. St Vincent De Paul plays a hugely important role in providing practical support to the most vulnerable families and individuals in communities across the country. Many, many families find it very difficult after Christmas and we don’t want to see people being forced to go to money lenders because of the financial pressure they are under.
“St Vincent De Paul will target this support to the most vulnerable families in a discreet, practical and professional way. They have been doing this work since before the Famine and are still to the fore in providing support to the poorest in our society and in fighting poverty.”
St Vincent De Paul has stated that this additional funding is particularly important at this time of year as they have noted a significant increase in requests for help across the country.
SVP National President Kieran Stafford said: “This grant will be used to assist families with their basic needs such as food, energy, debt relief and education together with the expenses associated with the challenging period after the festive season and in the coming winter months.”
Minister Ring has also announced a further €30,000 in funding for Protestant Aid to support their work in alleviating poverty. This brings to €180,000 the amount provided by the Department of Rural and Community Development to Protestant Aid in the past twelve months.
Protestant Aid works to relieve poverty and deprivation in the Republic of Ireland on a strictly non-denominational basis. Its primary activities include: grants to alleviate poverty or distress; annuities for the elderly; allowances for heating and energy costs; school expenses; second-level education grants and supporting sheltered housing and nursing care for elderly people.