I am passionate about the St. Vincent de Paul Society Exeter Chapter because of the one-on-one approach they take to service and because each volunteer brings sincerity and compassion to their service. SVdP understands that hunger and financial struggles can affect anyone at any time in their life. These struggles are not reserved for minorities or under-educated but they strike families of all walks of life. SVdP is a neighbor helping neighbor organization and their motto is “We Help People” and their hope is that their services will help people get back on their feet.
I have been volunteering for this organization for about a year now. I came to know the organization while helping a family member seek assistance. SVdP not only listened with compassionate hearts but went above and beyond anything I ever expected a community center to do. I pledge to continue my volunteer efforts and for every $100 dollars raised, I will volunteer for a food pantry service shift. To date I have approximately 40 volunteer hours with SVdP.
The Exeter, NH chapter has been serving their community, consisting of 6 seacoast area towns, for 25 years. In 2013, they assisted 3,055 clients or about 60 households per week. They saved 26 families from eviction from their homes, provided direct financial assistance to 77 housed holds and they distributed the equivalent of $730,000 in food or about 188,700 meals.They are on-track to distribute $1,000,000+ of food at retail value in 2014. The Center will begin providing dental services in October by way of a dental van donated by Exeter Hospital and in combination with Families First.
This Community Assistance Center operates 5 days a week providing full food pantry services and satellite offices for state and government program representatives to meet with clients close to their homes making services more easily accessible to those most in need. They also provide medical, housing, transportation and employment assistance, on-site computer training and interview preparation among many other services. The center is run completely on donations and by volunteers.