Seattle and King County St. Vincent de Paul assistance programs.

Direct assistance and referrals can be provided by the Seattle Washington Society of St. Vincent de Paul. The goal is to help families achieve overall self-sufficiency. So the charity may offer assistance such as funds to pay bills, employment leads, counseling, and more. They also build collaborative partnerships with other non-profits and churches in King County through well established and trusting relationships.

Most of the services provided are the result of home visits. These are done in an effort to help their neighbors. Volunteers from the society and local churches will visit neighbors in their homes. These volunteers will make what amounts to thousands of in-home person-to-person visits per year. They are very important as the visits help determine the exact nature of the help that is required by the client. Another reason this is done as studies prove that these visits are effective because they give the charity a true and more accurate assessment of the needs of the family. They are also very effective for the client as applicants that are requesting assistance will not have to arrange for child care, take time off from work or find transportation to a nearby center. The charity uses these volunteers (or Vincentians) and partner with over 50 neighborhood-based churches, parishes and non-profit groups.

Direct assistance can be provided, if the Seattle individual meets all program conditions. A volunteer will help determine this as the result of a two person visit. If found to be eligible, some of the aid can include, but is not limited to, the following.

Eviction prevention – The Seattle St. Vincent de Paul is focused on preventing homelessness. The charity organization and the churches it works with will assist people with avoiding eviction by providing emergency rental and utility assistance. Some evictions can be caused by unpaid energy bills, so that is why that aid is offered too.

Basic supplies – The organization will help here as well. This can include free vouchers that can be used to pay for gasoline, food, medications, and other basic supplies.

Referrals – Volunteers and staff can also go over other options. They may offer referrals which might resolve a serious need or help a family solve a problem. So if the society in King County can't help you, then they may know who can.




All of the direct assistance is funded by a combination of funds, donations, and cash grants that are raised by the local Seattle Washington Conference Parishes and churches. Money raised from the thrift stores is also used to pay for financial assistance.

Self-Sufficiency is provided by office staff, a case management team, and other volunteers from the community. The different groups coordinate various agency activities. This is done in an effort to complement each program and to ensure that the charity will deliver a total support package when possible.

The self-sufficiency programs can help individuals transition from barriers created by homelessness, poverty, incarceration, and other distressed situations. The goal is to have people start a new beginning. The goals of the St. Vincent organization are to help people regain self-sufficiency, find a job, increase their income, and get back on their feet.

As part of this process, case managers and social workers will work with the client to develop an action plan with each client. The program will include such things as family, financial, social and even spiritual aspects of their lives. The entire process could take as long as 18 months.

The Seattle organization also operates a Food Bank. Thousands of needy individuals and families in King County receive free groceries, canned goods, and bags of food every year. Those clients who use the pantry can expect to receive free quality meats, produce, dairy products, frozen foods, breads, baby formula, and other non-perishable items and canned goods. Seniors citizens may even have hot, mostly free meals delivered to them.

Basic Health Care and health assessments are administered. This program actually operates from the Seattle Food Bank. While terms and services can change, the charity may periodically offer free blood pressure checks, flu vaccinations, and other health assessments and check ups. St. Vincent De Paul is also looking into eye examinations and other basic medical care assistance.

The main phone number in the greater Seattle area is 206-767-6449. Call to speak to a St. Vincent staff member.




By Jon McNamara

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