FareShare North East caught up with St Vinnie’s Centre, one of our wonderful members, to find out more about their community project and how they are supporting people in the lead up to Christmas.
Vinnie’s is a community project of the St. Vincent de Paul Society (England and Wales) which is dedicated to supporting vulnerable individuals and families in the North East area. Not only does Vinnie’s offer a fully-equipped on-site cafe offering hot lunch meals each week, but also includes a community dance space, art classes, family support groups, knit n knatter sessions, English classes for refugees and asylum seekers, vintage sales, eco-markets and much much more. Vinnie’s is essentially a community hub, that supports everyone, whether it be to access food support, catch up with friends or simply just to talk to someone.
Due to the rising cost of living, Vinnie’s staff and volunteers are seeing a rise in the number of people accessing support, most notably the ‘forgotten families’ who are living on the poverty line. Vinnie’s are dedicated to provide a warm space, filled with support, to everyone who needs it most, especially throughout the cold winter months. Last year, Vinnie’s made 14,000 hot meals for vulnerable people, and are expecting the numbers to rise. Jan from Vinnie’s said:
“Whilst the costs for rent, energy and water are going up, our donations are gradually going down, and we are likely to see more people in need of support in 2023”
In the lead up to Christmas, Vinnie’s will be hosting a Christmas meal for over 200 people, and are planning to distribute food hampers to their beneficiaries, as an extra treat for Christmas. They will continue to provide a warm space for vulnerable individuals and families across Newcastle this December.
If you want to find out more about Vinnie’s, or would like to donate, please visit their website.