„Society of St Vincent de Paul in Slovakia invites volunteers to its circle under patronage of St Vincent de Paul and his charisma, to work for poor people.“
The Society of St Vincent de Paul in an international organisation established in 1833 in France by the Blessed Frédéric Ozanam. The Society re-opened its activity in Slovakia after a break (1948) in its operation, in 1995.
The activity of the Society of St Vincent de Paul is closedly linked with helping poor families, individuals, homeless people, people from foster homes, ex-prisoners and old-age pensioners. The Society has 24 teams (conferences) in Slovakia that usually have 5 to 7 members who are all volunteers. Teams of people workin Society of St Vincent de Paul in Slovakia under the term „conferences“. The Society‘s activities are organised by the „Society National Council.“ The National Council is responsible for the Society‘s finances, its management and relationship with state and other social institutions. It publishes a magazine twice a year that describes its activities as well as the Annual Report and financial statement of Society of St Vincent de Paul. The Society has a dedicated spiritual father from the Missions Society of St Vincent de Paul.
The Society of St Vincent de Paul has 24 conferences in Slovakia, five of them are located in Bratislava. They are: St Andrew’s Conference, that sends parcels with foodstaff and clothing needed by poor people and social institutions, (shelters) from whole Slovakia. St. Gorazd Conference takes care works in House of Hope after its construction has been finished, St Cecil Conference that is working at St. Vincent de Paul school and organizes children summer camps for poor children, Theatre under the Church Conference – members of the conference provide spiritual recollections for youth, earning funds by their theatre performances and Queen of the Family Conference located by a church in Teplicka street that operates a clothing store for poor people. There are also other conferences like St Joseph Conference in Levice that operates its storage called Vincentík, which provides free clothing as well as household needs such as furniture, electrical appliances, etc. It is of great help for the town and parish. Other conferences are located in Nitra, Radošina, Banská Bystrica, Mojtín, Košice-Šaca and in Kráľovský Chlmec. St Stephan Conference in Kráľovský Chlmec takes care of a gipsy colony located nearby in Ukraine, where it provides with its priest humanitarian and financial help to children and to a children‘s camp.
Members of the National Council hold monthly meetings and share experiences and information needed for the Society‘s operations. Other conferences meet at their planned appointments. A meeting of all conferences is hold in the House of Hope twice a year and spiritual recollections for all members of the Society are organized with the St Vincent priest once a year.
The Society of St Vincent de Paul in Slovakia runs two social-charitative centres, the House of Hope in Bratislava and a Social Centre in Šurany.
House of Hope was open in Bratislava in June 2011. It provides a social service , daily support for pensioners that need a help during the day as well as accommodation for girls from foster houses. Clients of the House of Hope are provided with various activities , like brain trainings, rehabilitations and massages. The House of Hope receives grants from various donations as well as social services allowances.
The Social centre in Šurany, opened in 2001, provides nowadays two social services for men, a shelter for 20 homeless people and assisted accommodation for invalid and homeless people.
The shelter has good cooperation with local offices and with the Labour Office and thus the shelter is often visited by social assignees. The Director and social workers take care of the clients, while the fraternity nurse helps as a volunteer in the kitchen and takes care of the chapel.
Clients are provided with therapy by working on farms, growing plants as well as by breeding poultry, rabbits, pigs, etc. in order to secure foodstuffs for all clients. The goal is to teach clients to become self-sufficient.
The Society of St Vincent de Paul‘s goal is to protect human rights, alleviate poverty and its causes by its charitative works..