Providing Assistance

Providing Assistance

"No work of charity is foreign to the Society. It includes any form of help that alleviates suffering or deprivation, and promotes human dignity and personal integrity in all their dimensions.' The Rule, 1.3. Providing assistance to those in need is the essence of Conference work. The assistance members can provide takes many forms from emergency food assistance to helping people connect with essential services like counselling, and providing pastoral care.

Providing Assistance

Emergency Relief Assistance

Members can provide emergency relief assistance to people aged 18 and above who are unable to meet their basic needs due to financial hardship or crisis. Emergency relief assistance is often material assistance, for example:

•    Short-term accommodation (e.g. for victims of domestic violence, people at risk of homelessness or who are homeless)
•    Food parcels, store gift cards and food vouchers
•    Health care assistance (e.g. payment of medical bills and/or chemist vouchers for medication)
•    Transport assistance (e.g. bus, train, fuel vouchers)
•    Material goods (e.g. non-food assistance such as clothing, bedding, household items)
•    Utility bills (EAPA)

Of course these things are useful when people are in situation where they urgently need material assistance, but The Society can offer other forms of assistance, for example:

Pastoral Care

Every day, our Conference members reach out with the hand of friendship to those doing it tough within their local communities. Members often visit the sick, the lonely and the vulnerable, listen to their stories and offer spiritual and emotional support to help people get back on their feet.

No Interest Loans Scheme (NILS)

Do you have clients who could benefit from a small loan to cover one-off expenses like car registration, whitegoods or work-related equipment? A NILS loan could be a great solution.

A NILS loan is a safe way for clients to access up to $2000 without fees or any additional costs. A loan term is up to 12 months (but can be up to 24 months in some circumstances) and is designed for individuals and families on low incomes. Contact for more information.

Energy Accounts Payment Assistance Scheme (EAPA)

As the cost-of-living crisis worsens for families across NSW, covering household bills is becoming more of a challenge. However, help is available via the Energy Accounts Payment Assistance (EAPA) scheme. EAPA is administered by the NSW Government’s Office of Energy & Climate Change (OECC). It offers short-term support to NSW households facing difficulty paying their electricity or natural gas bill due to a sudden financial crisis or emergency in the form of $50 digital vouchers that can be applied towards existing utility bills.

This means that SVDP NSW will be providing EAPA assessments to clients facing difficulties in paying their electricity and gas bills through the registered Conferences that have opted-in to recommence EAPA.  To find out how your Conference can provide EAPA assistance to clients, please contact

Disaster Relief

When disaster like floods and fire strikes communities, people need access to urgent assistance like food and shelter. Our members and volunteers can be mobilised to provide assistance during these times of emergency.   The Society, like many organisations, opens up a public appeal for general donations, which are typically added to by government. Emergency funds are distributed to individuals as 'Emergency Relief Funds' (ERF).

Gift Cards

From March 2024, Retail stores started selling gift cards at all NSW stores.​ These are in denominations of $100, $50, $30 and $20.

Conferences and Centres will order packs of 50 cards from our Supply Centre using the Vinnies Supply Centre Order Form and distribute these to the people they assist. Clients can then redeem them at any Vinnies retail store in NSW. ​

It is up to the Conference to determine what value to give out ​using the Retail Pricing Guide as a reference. For more information on ordering gift card for your clients, please contact:

Overseas Partnerships

The Society works in partnership with local communities in developing countries (Indonesia, Thailand, India, Solomon Islands, Fiji and The Phillipines ) to improve the lives of those in need and to assist in breaking the cycle of poverty and dependence by undertaking long term, sustainable programs.

To achieve this, a number of Conferences communicate with Councils around the world to promote a spirit of understanding, friendship and solidarity among all Vincentians.

For more information on how to get your Conference involved in the twinning program, visit our overseas assistance page contact your twinning officer in your Central Council.

Working with Amelie Housing Residents

Amelie Housing is the Society's Social and Affordable Housing provider. Conferences that have an Amelie Housing site close by can participate in a program that connects members to residents on a regular basis. 

Vinnies members are an extra layer of support for residents to help us build stronger communities within our housing properties and better connections with groups of people outside the housing community.