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Southern Mississippi St. Vincent de Paul assistance programs.

A leading charity organization in southern Mississippi is the society of St. Vincent de Paul. The churches and the charity provide emergency assistance and basic needs to a wide region, including the counties of Hancock, Harrison, Stone and Jackson. They partner with local churches, conferences and volunteers from the community to distribute aid, such as food and financial assistance for rent, utilities, and medical care.

If you request help, volunteers (known as Vincentians) will visit your home to process an application and determine your need. Some of the primary services offered are listed below. However one focus is on housing and homeless prevention, such as rent and energy bills.

Food and free meal services

Meals and groceries are offered at many sites and churches. They operate free emergency food pantries for immediate needs. A St. Vincent program known as We Care can provide monthly food baskets for the needy in Biloxi and Harrison County.

Hunger prevention can include longer term support too. This is where SVDP food banks and pantries come into play. There may be boxes of groceries, Ensure for the elderly, food boxes for immigrants, and other support given out in counties including Stone, Jackson and Harrison. It is free food for the needy, low income, unemployed and others in southern Mississippi. they also give referrals, including to food banks in Mississippi near you.

Financial aid, medical, and Society of Saint Vincent housing

Housing resources are extensive. Homeless assistance includes hot meals, personal hygiene kits, and clothing for shelters. Or get information on local transitional housing units and apartments that the homeless can work towards staying at. Senior home visits, including to shut ins and residents in nursing homes in Jackson County. Staff from the Society of St. Vincent arrange this care and home visits. Additional housing programs, including assistance in obtaining permanent housing in Jackson or Harrison County. Or get help in finding qualify contractors for needed repairs.

 

 

 

 

There is a pharmacy program operated by St. Vincent in the southern Mississippi and coastal area as well. It is available for the low income, poor, uninsured, and residents that can’t afford to pay for expensive prescription medications on their own. It is a charity program and provides some type of support to those with life threatening conditions. Some medications may be passed out, or vouchers. Another service is from pharmaceutical prescription plans.

Health care assistance is offered too. Medical Care includes prescriptions and other assistance in getting needed medical care. A charity pharmacy is operated as well, and see below for more details. As SVDP also works with national drug companies, and gives discount cards to pay for medications, including GOOD RX pharmacy discounts.

Financial assistance is always in high demand. This can include grants or money for bills such as rent, heating costs, and prescriptions. The demand for this is very high and only a small number of applications can be satisfied.

 

 

 

 

 

Additional services in the southern part of the state are as follows.

  • Transportation across southern Mississippi conferences for the elderly or those that are “stranded”. There are a wide variety of free senior ride services for local travel, such as to the pharmacy or doctor.
  • Referrals and information for clients to local charities, churches and professional agencies in the region that deal in special areas of need.
  • Career services and job counseling for the unemployed includes help finding job openings and resume preparation services.
  • Society of Saint Vincent in Jackson and Harrison County MS (and the region) helps immigrants and migrant workers. Housing, shelter, ESL classes and more is arranged.
  • Disaster Relief is provided by the society and they offer relief supplies, Meals on Wheels, and more.

SVDP in southern Mississippi thrift stores

Thrift Store sells gently used clothing school supplies, and Christmas items. Free vouchers to pay for very short term lodging, bus fares in the Jackson area, or gasoline.

The Thrift Store in Biloxi serves people across counties such as Jackson and Hancock. Other centers are available as well that people can turn to for help. Another main store is in Pascagoula Mississippi. Each and every center invites the general public, regardless of their income or religion, to stop in and buy gently used clothing, furniture, school backpacks, Christmas gifts and other household items. What is sold at each store will vary greatly from day to day and week to week. Seasonal assistance is provided to around Easter, Thanksgiving, or Christmas.

The money raised at the St. Vincent de Paul stores goes to pay for their programs in Hancock and other counties. It funds food for the poor, heating bill programs, rent, pharmaceuticals, prescription medicines, and other needs for the poor and less fortunate.

 

 

 

Applying to SVDP in southern Mississippi

there are multiple churches and counties serviced. Referrals are always given by SVDP as well. One phone number for the main Biloxi office is 228-388-1837.

 

By Jon McNamara

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