WelCom December 2017: The St Vincent de Paul Shop, Hawera, opened in High St in 1967 to provide a service to help others. That motivation has continued for 50 years.
The opportunity 24 years ago to purchase a larger shop with a generous bequest from Miss Mary Fitzgerald and a National Council loan, has proved a good decision.
Our shop managers are Barbara Hurcomb and Ruth Rangiwahia. Previously our long-serving managers were Barbara Fowler and Berna Sutton.
The shop is managed by team of volunteers who work with energy and fun. Our shop’s success relies on the generous gifting of good, clean, used clothing, and household goods from the local community as well as the people who shop with us.
Over the past 18 months, our variety of community support has included helping with St Joseph’s School pastoral-needs programme; annual grants for tertiary study and teacher-aid funding; funeral costs; the Food Bank; and providing food donations and other support as needed. Members also volunteer at Trinity Hospital and Rest Home, where we have helped provide a portable oxygen machine and a new TV.
We work with the Public Health Nurse to help families in practical ways with essentials. We recently responded to the appeal for goods for Tonga and have helped with clothing for remand prisoners.
Over the years we have assisted with donations to appeals from National SVdP Society when natural disasters occur.
A great groundwork was established by those who established our Opportunity Shop 50 years ago. Today’s volunteers continue their spirit of service. We give thanks for those 50 years.
Freda M McGurk
Freda M McGurk is President St Joseph’s Conference SVDP, Hawera.