Parish Outreach and Charities
Parish Third World Group
The Parish Third World Group was established in 1989 and has raised well over a million pounds since then - our annual income has been around £100,000 in recent years. All money raised goes directly for the relief of poverty in developing countries – we do not spend any of it on administration. The Group is registered with the Charity Commission for NI (Registration Number 102818) and recognised by HMRC for Gift Aid purposes.
We divide our income each year between seventeen projects, mainly through nuns and priests from Irish Orders, working in Africa, Asia and South America to provide food and clean water, healthcare, education and training to people suffering from extreme poverty. Donations by regular standing order are the largest single source of income for the Group, raising over £30,000 each year. We hold an Annual Collection in September and receive other donations throughout the year and from legacies. Our fundraising events include bread and soup lunches in Lent and Advent and table quizzes in January and October. We also organise practice interviews for students applying for medical school each November and around ninety doctors and other professionals give their services on a voluntary basis; parents/students are invited to make a donation to the Group.
We normally meet at 7.30pm in the Parish Hall on the first Monday of each month from September to April (not currently taking place Covid-19). If you cannot come to meetings you can help in other ways such as making a pot of soup, donating a prize for the ballot at a quiz or serving tea and coffee to those helping at the practice interviews.
St Vincent de Paul Society
The Society of Saint de Paul, SVP, exists to fight poverty. It is an organisation which seeks, in a spirit of justice and charity, to help those in need. In Northern Ireland, the SVP has around 2,000 members who work on a voluntary basis through 182 “ conferences”. We are dedicated to helping those who are disadvantaged, neglected or in need, without discrimination. Our work is based on respect for people’s dignity and seeks to help people to help themselves, primarily through home visitation, offering friendship, support, advice and practical help.
Each year, thanks to the generosity of parishioners, St. Brigid’s Conference is able to distribute around £50,000 to provide financial assistance, food, clothing, furniture, electrical items, fuel and education for those in need. Many of those we help are unemployed, homeless, families on low income, migrant workers, refugees, asylum seekers, ex-prisoners and those who are facing difficulties through loneliness, illness or relationship breakdown. Whilst South Belfast is, in general, a relatively affluent area, there is real poverty and hardship in particular districts of the Parish.
Anyone seeking to help or interested in assisting us with our work should contact SVP Headquarters at: Society of Saint Vincent de Paul
196-200 Antrim Road Belfast BT15 2AJ
T: 028 9035 1561
St. Brigid’s Parish is part of the South Belfast Foodbank. It provides a minimum of three days nutritionally balanced emergency food and support to local people in crisis. Fifteen other churches are partnered with St. Brigid’s in this project. There are families struggling to put food on the table. For people on low incomes, a sudden crisis - redundancy, benefit delay or even an unexpected bill - can mean going hungry. A Collection is taken up on the first weekend of each month at all Sunday masses.
Apostolic Work has branches all over Ireland. The association was set up in 1923 to help missionaries in their work all over the world.
We no longer make vestments but the aims remain - we continue to pray daily for all missionaries and provide financial support to assist with medical needs, water, transport, education, building churches/schools and supplying sacred vessels - in fact anything that helps to improve the lives of people in need. Requests for help from people not known to the office are carefully vetted. Visiting missionaries have all stressed that financial help is their greatest need. 94p in every £1 raised last year went directly to the missions.
Our branch is small and we are anxious to find new members to help us make a great difference.