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Hinds County St. Vincent de Paul assistance programs.

Society of St. Vincent de Paul of Hinds County operates based on the support of churches, volunteers, and donations from the community. The charity will work to help those residents that are in great need who are also struggling. As resources allow, and if an applicant is qualified, some form of support is offered to everyone, regardless of origin, race, religion or gender.

The local churches provide individualized assistance for low-income, at risk individuals and families who are in need of clothing, food or emergency supplies. Limited amounts of funds, or loans, may be issued for rent and utility bills, and assistance is also provided on an as needed basis. Applicants to the society may expect a phone call from one of their volunteers to provide an assessment of their needs.

Free or low cost meals and food boxes are is available for struggling individuals and families through a partnership of local pantries and soup kitchens at churches. With the help of volunteers, participants are educated what resources are available to assist them in Hinds County Mississippi.

Information such as addresses and phone numbers are given out to participants in order to ensure they are aware of pantries, soup kitchens and other community resources (such as applications to food stamps) that will support them in their struggle. The Society of Saint Vincent de Paul collaborates with many other local outreach and non-profit programs within the community including Meals on Wheels as well.

Emergency supplies of food, meals and groceries are also supplied to at-risk, in need individuals and families. For the homeless in Hinds County, sack lunches are available at local churches and those home bound individuals may have access to meal delivery service directly to their homes.

In Jackson, parishioners of many churches sponsor Christmas for needy families and children each year. Presents, free toys, toys, clothing and other items are given to clients at no cost to them, and this is done in the spirit of the holiday. Find other free Christmas gift programs in Hinds County Mississippi, all of which St. Vincent can refer people too.





Helping people experience positive growth and get on a path of self-sufficiency is the goal of their case management services, which is a key Society of St. Vincent resource. This is available to all individuals from different backgrounds who reside in Hinds County. An emphasis is placed on helping people obtain financial stability, employment, education, establishing long-term career plans, and personal goals they would like to obtain for themselves. This program works in collaboration with various local churches and other charity groups.

Participants have access to many resources including a job center and a free computer lab, library, and clothing closets for gently used professional work or school clothes for men, children and women. Many of these are located at partner non-profits in the county or government locations. This service is geared towards helping people make a stable life for themselves rather than slipping through the cracks of government aid or traditional programs.

Many of these varied programs that are offered by St. Vincent to those at-risk, low-income or struggling individuals in Hinds County are made possible from the community and purchases they make at the Thrift Store. Over the years, thousands of individuals and families have benefited from the store as they are able to receive various household items and clothing at an affordable price.

Also, if families do not reach a certain low income level, they may be eligible for vouchers or gift certificates as well. An example of this is the thrift store may hand out free clothing, holiday goods, furniture or household items free of charge to those facing a high risk, critical living situation.

Items sold at the store are gently used and affordable with the stock changing on a daily basis depending on donations received during certain time periods. Donations from people across the Jackson and Raymond community often consist of clothing, beds, cribs, coats, school supplies, shoes and many other items needed by people in dire circumstances.

The store runs daily, weekly and monthly specials to help people afford certain items in a timely manner. Discounts for seniors, students, those living with disabilities, etc. are available in some instances as well. This is a reciprocal program as every time a person shops at a St. Vincent de Paul Thrift Store, net proceeds from each and every purchase fund their financial assistance programs and various outreach services needed for those struggling and in need within the community.

The most highly demanded resource is for emergency financial assistance. This is a high demand, high volume request and unfortunately, there are limitations to the amount of funds available. Volunteers of Saint Vincent do many home visits on a monthly basis to screen applicants. They will also assess and determine the urgent needs of these individuals and families. This is one of the many charitable financial aid programs available to the low income.

When funds allow, money that was raised from the community and local charities is provided in several forms including for paying utility bills. This us typically done via grants for electricity, water, natural gas, or air conditioning bills. Rent, deposit and eviction prevention assistance is available along with loans, and support from St. Vincent may also be used for providing basic health care expenses such as medication.





Referrals from the Society churches in Hinds County

A transitional housing program is available in Hinds County. The centers are for those recently evicted from their homes or the longer term homeless that have worked towards self-sufficiency. In addition, case management services are available for homeless persons in Jackson Mississippi living with severe mental illness, a disability or those living with medical conditions that are debilitating, making it impossible for them to find and maintain a stable, secure home.

Many of the clients of St. Vincent in Hinds County consist of men and women, including single moms, who have been transiently living in various local shelters on numerous occasions. Due to this instability, they have not been participants in any other low income housing assistance or supportive services offered within their communities. The main goal of the transitional program is to help these people find long-term housing in a stable environment while utilizing appropriate local resources for employment and other needs.

For referrals to local resources in Hinds County, including those from Saint Vincent, dial 601-969-3125.

By Jon McNamara

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