Holiday help: Springfield volunteer program helps those in need through seasonal items

An all-volunteer outreach program of St. Vincent de Paul in Springfield is working to help those in need.

Vinnie’s Treasure, located at 228 Raffensberger Ave., opened in October 2023 as an extension to the St. Vincent de Paul (SVdP) Thrift Center. It sells seasonal items, with one room devoted to Christmas, and the other rooms rotate displays for Easter, spring, Thanksgiving, Halloween, patriotic and other holidays.

St. Vincent de Paul Springfield District Council, which started in the early 1960′s, has church conferences serving in Clark and Logan counties including Saint Teresa, Saint Bernard, Holy Trinity, Sacred Heart/New Carlisle, St. Patrick’s/Bellefontaine, and St. Mary of the Woods in Russells Point.

“Our focus in service is centered around rent and utilities assistance, food, clothing, furniture, appliances, work permits and interpretation. All people are served at SVdP,” Casey Rollins, executive director, said, adding they also offer interpretation assistance with immigrant needs, particularly regarding necessities for work permits and status protections.

The Thrift Center, located at 2425 E. High St., opened on Aug. 13, 1994, and provides necessities for people in need through the Emergency Assistance program. It provides clothing, household items, furniture, appliances and more.

In October 2021, SVdP acquired the property on the north end of the parking lot at 2415-2417 E. High St. Local volunteers and vendors made the necessary updates and moved the food pantry and emergency assistance programs into the new building called the St. Vincent de Paul Community Center. They then repurposed the former food pantry and emergency assistance office.

“With so many holiday, seasonal and occasional vintage items in storage at the Thrift Center, we decided to update the old pantry and turn it into Vinnie’s Treasures,” Rollins said. “Thanks to a local supporter, we were able to add siding to the exterior of the building, update the flooring inside, add some paint and shelves.”

That’s when Vinnie’s opened last year to offer those items, which also includes dolls, stuffed animals, wreaths, dishes, novelty item, candles, electronic seasonal items, place mats and more.

Vinnie’s is open from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday. Proceeds from the shop go directly those in need. Cash and check only, no debit cards, are accepted payments.

A Christmas in July event will be held from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on July 13. There will be discounts after a certain amount of sales per customer, everything will be discounted at a fraction of the retail price for all items, and snacks will be available.

For more information, Vinnie’s or resources, visit the website at www.svdpspfld.org or Springfield District Council St. Vincent de Paul Society Facebook page.

Credit: Bill Lackey

Credit: Bill Lackey

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