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ST. VINCENT DE PAUL AND GOODWILL ANNOUNCE ALLIANCE
 
SOUTH BEND, INDIANA (December 12, 2017) – The St. Vincent de Paul Society (SVDP) of St. Joseph County, Inc. and Goodwill Industries of Michiana, Inc. announced today that the two nonprofit organizations will form a strategic alliance for their clothing and furniture program. 
 
St. Vincent de Paul will close their thrift store locations on December 23, and, in the future, will provide vouchers to families in need that can be redeemed at any Goodwill Store in St. Joseph and Elkhart Counties.
 
SVDP has operated thrift stores in St. Joseph County since the 1960s to support the Society’s material giveaway program and provide financial support to other SVDP programs. However, over the last 10 years, the current store model has become unsustainable. The increase in lower-cost retailers entering the community has provided customers who shop regularly at SVDP stores the opportunity to find new goods at similar prices elsewhere.  With the advent of online retail sites such as EBay, Craigslist and other online garage sale sites, many donations that Saint Vincent de Paul would have normally received are being sold on the secondary market. 
 
Anne Watson, executive director of St. Vincent de Paul Society of St. Joseph County, said, “The alliance with Goodwill empowers the Society to focus on the core of our mission—providing emergency help to those in need. The Society will continue to provide food and financial assistance, and in partnership with Goodwill, will also continue to provide material goods to those in need.”
 
SVDP focuses on survival, stability and support programs such as its food pantry, clothing certificates, financial assistance, Bridges out of Poverty, and other programs. Goodwill focuses on self-sufficiency programs aimed to help create job readiness.
 
“As we continue to move forward, it is exciting to work more closely with St Vincent de Paul. When both organizations focus on their strengths, we become better for our community,” said Debie Coble, president and CEO of Goodwill Industries of Michiana, Inc. “Together, we will be able to provide our neediest citizens with emergency services to self-sufficiency. It is an exciting opportunity.”
 
As part of the strategic alliance with Goodwill, all SVDP employees displaced by the closing of the thrift stores will be offered an equivalent position by Goodwill.
 
The last day of retail sales at SVDP thrift stores on 1827 N. Bendix Drive and 2302 South Bend Avenue in South Bend, will be December 23.  Special sales of fixtures and equipment will be announced after that date. 
 
All material goods – clothing, furniture, etc. – should be donated to local Goodwill stores.  Donations of food may be dropped off at the St. Vincent de Paul Center at 520 Crescent Avenue in South Bend, from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m. Monday through Friday.
 
Established in 1904, the St. Vincent de Paul Society of St. Joseph County, Inc. is a Catholic lay organization that engages people to join together to provide for the emergency needs of those experiencing poverty and to empower those they serve to attain self-sufficiency. SVDP provides help in the form of food, financial assistance, furniture and clothing and offer three educational courses to promote self-sufficiency. Please visit our website at svdpsb.org or you can contact us at svdpsborg@gmail.com or via Facebook (Facebook.com/svdpsb) and Twitter (Twitter.com/svdpsb).
 
Goodwill Industries of Michiana, Inc. began in 1936 providing services to individuals who are looking to move to self-sufficiency. Our mission is to strengthen our communities by empowering individuals and families through education, job training and placement.  For more information, visit Goodwill Industries of Michiana, Inc. at www.goodwill-ni.org.
 
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