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Boise and Ada County St. Vincent de Paul programs.

One of the goals of the Society of St. Vincent de Paul  is to help individuals in need, and the charity may be able to assist those who have nowhere else to turn to for help. Assistance programs operate across the greater Boise metropolitan and Southwest Idaho area. Any advice, referrals and financial assistance is provided with respect and dignity, and services are offered on a personal and confidential basis.

While very limited, and it depends of funds and donations, emergency services can help with paying natural gas, electric, and/or water bills. This service would be provided by the Society's Conferences and churches throughout the year. Any aid is only offered for individuals who cannot afford their regular monthly payments and who are experiencing a crisis with nowhere else to turn to. Emergency rental assistance is yet another way that the St. Vincent de Paul Direct Aid program can help. This is focused on people facing eviction and homelessness. Everyone can go through a difficult period, and this is where the Ada County charity may be able to assist.

The Southwest Idaho District Council of St. Vincent de Paul also operates a few food pantries in the region. Many families and people need affordable groceries and food for many reasons. For example, high heating bills and housing costs can make it difficult for families to make ends meet. So the pantries can help people who are faced with a crisis, such as a job loss, medical emergency, or unexpected bill or expenses. This is when a food pantry may be able to help.

Free food is given to anyone who walks in and needs assistance, and no one is turned away. In some years as many as 20,000 people may receive help from a center. Another service available is when the St. Vincent Food Pantry volunteers note a frequent visitor to a center in Boise, they will help them explore other emergency assistance or resources that may be available. The address of the food distribution centers are 3209 W. Overland Rd., which is next to the District Council Office. The phone number is 333-1460. Another food pantry is at Holy Apostles' Catholic Church, 6300 N Meridian Rd., Meridian, Idaho 83642 as well as Society of St. Vincent de Paul Food Pantry, 1203 7th St. North. (Off 11th Street), Nampa, ID 83651.





The Society of St. Vincent de Paul Patient Assistance Program can help people in the community, including Canyon and Gem counties, obtain prescription medications that they are unable to otherwise afford. As most people know, the cost of certain types of medication can be very expensive, especially when people need to provide for other basic needs as well. Those without health are unable to afford their prescription medications, so if you fall into this category the services they provide may be able to help.

The charity organization and their Patient Assistance Program partners with national pharmaceutical and drug companies in order to provide medications free of charge to those who meet qualifications. Almost every single pharmaceutical company has its own set of criteria that applicants must meet to qualify for their programs, so St. Vincent de Paul can help patents navigate this.

So workers from St. Vincent collect the required information (including income and insurance status) from each client and work directly with the major Pharmaceutical Companies. They will help you apply for aid, and advise on the process. All of this is offered for free to income qualified residents of Boise and Ada county Idaho. People on Medicaid or Medicare can’t apply. More on patient assistance programs.

The Society of Saint Vincent is also a place to learn about medical care for low income as well as uninsured families. There are thousands of residents of the Boise Idaho area, and really entire county, that struggle to pay for their health care or medications. There are resources available to assist, and locate information on free clinics near you for health care..

The Thanksgiving Family Food Box Program is offered for families in the Southwest Idaho region, including in Owyhee, Boise, and nearby towns and cities. Hundreds of free food baskets are distributed to the needy in the community, and it relies heavily on donations from people in the community.  The St. Vincent Food Baskets will contain complete Thanksgiving dinners which have been donated and assembled by members of the community.

Thrift Stores operate in Canyon and Ada County. The Society's stores play an important role in providing affordable items and assistance to those in need. Volunteers and a staff work and are dedicated in collecting, evaluating and merchandising a variety of donated goods, such as clothing, coats, furniture, and more. Vouchers are given and are redeemable at their Thrift Stores as well, and those can help people get the items for free. The merchandise is sold to the general public, and it provides people and struggling families with a low cost shopping alternative of quality goods to low income individuals and families. Those who cannot afford furniture, clothing, boots, and other household items are provided for through these thrift stores.




The Thrift Stores provide a number of important functions to people in the community. Not only are surplus funds/profits from the store provided as part of their emergency financial assistance programs, but also hundreds of thousands of pounds of clothing, thousands of pieces of furniture and more can be sold to the less fortunate.

To apply for financial assistance, food, and more in Boise and Southwest Idaho, call the Help Line at 208-331-2208. You may also be referred to Parish in your area.


By Jon McNamara

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