Why embark on this campaign now? How did you arrive at this point?
Identifying our campaign priorities was the result of nearly four years of discussion and planning. Former Executive Director, Liz Carter and current Executive Director, Mike Dunn, led an effort among staff, board members, neighbors and community partners to determine the strategic direction of the organization to expand access to SVDP services.
SVDP has occupied the same building in the West End since 1962; it is a former mattress warehouse that was constructed in the 1870s. We have outgrown the space. Our services are not able to be offered simultaneously with our limited space. With recent urban development, many lower income people have moved to neighborhoods like the West End, Price Hill, Mt. Airy and Winton Hills. SVDP’s current proximity to these neighborhoods makes it the right place for expansion. SVDP acquired the former Young and Bertke warehouse, located across the street from the Liz Carter Outreach Center, in 2012, which will be the site of our new outreach center.
In addition, according to the Cincinnati Family Homelessness Services Study conducted in 2014, “Homelessness Prevention is a cost-effective alternative to shelter for many families, and allows families to avoid the trauma and disruption of homelessness…St. Vincent de Paul’s homelessness prevention program demonstrates successful outcomes, but lacks sufficient resources to meet the needs of many families on the brink of homelessness.” The Cincinnati community’s Solutions for Family Homelessness Plan, created in 2015, identifies the community’s need for additional resources for emergency assistance and homelessness prevention services; we are responding to this plan by creating a Conference Assistance Fund, which will provide resources to assist more neighbors in need throughout Hamilton County.
When was your last campaign?
This is only the second campaign in the 149 year history of SVDP. SVDP successfully completed a $2.5 MM campaign in 2006, which helped fund the opening of the Charitable Pharmacy and the original renovations of SVDP’s Liz Carter Outreach Center.
When will construction on the new outreach center begin?
We plan to break ground on the new outreach center in late summer/early fall of 2018. Prior to breaking ground, vacant lots owned by SVDP on the south side of Bank Street must be cleared to create an additional parking lot for the new outreach center. This construction has already begun. Modifications to the Liz Carter Outreach Center will occur after the completion of the new outreach center.
When will the Upward Spiral Campaign wrap up?
The goal is to conclude the Upward Spiral Campaign with SVDP’s 150th anniversary in 2019.
How will the Conference Assistance Fund work?
Typically, our parish-based volunteer groups (Conferences) raise funds through their parish to support the needs of neighbors in their surrounding communities. However, these donations are not always enough to meet the need. The Conference Assistance Fund is there to support the Conferences as needed and will be a permanent, board-directed fund.
I donate to the St. Vincent de Paul Conference in my parish. Where does that money go? Is this a separate initiative?
All money collected by the SVDP Conference in your parish, stays with that Conference and helps people living in the area surrounding your parish. This campaign is a special, one-time initiative that benefits our neighbors in need living throughout Hamilton County.