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SVP can assist with back to school costs

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Mary Woolley, a member of St Patrick’s Conference of SVP.

Mary Woolley, a member of St Patrick’s Conference of SVP.

Mary Woolley, a member of St Patrick’s Conference of SVP.

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THE St Patrick’s Conference of Sant Vincent de Paul have been dealing with a noticeable increase in calls from parents who need help with the cost of children going bac to school.

This year St Vincent de Paul call centres around the country have received a record number of over 5,000 calls from parents during the month of August, with many families finding it difficult to cope.

St Patrick's Conference member Mary Woolley said; ‘‘At this time of year people are often under pressure. Going back to school can be a very expensive time. We can provide supports for people going back to school at both national and secondary level. People should contact our headquarters at (01) 8550022 and they can put you in touch with someone from our chapter.

‘There are also a number of bursaries available for third level students and apprenticeships, including post-leaving certificate courses. In those cases, people should contact us directly by sending a text to (086) 7314589.’

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Anyone who is finding themselves under increasing pressure financially should immediately make efforts to contact St Vincent de Paul.

‘It has been a busy time but we haven’t been overwhelmed,’ added Mary.

‘There has certainly been an increase in calls over the past number of weeks. We can help to defray expenses when families find themselves under pressure for the likes of school books, uniforms and shoes.

‘If anyone is feeling under pressure they can contact us and explain your situation. We will take it from there. Every families situation is different and we cater to what the individual family needs are. Families often find themselves under additional pressures when they have more than one child going back to school.’

The Pandemic Unemployment Payment (PUP) has also helped ease the pressure on some families, but that looks set to change from September, when the payments will begin to wind down by €50.

‘Some people are still getting the PUB payments and that is keeping the wolf from the door. However, the PUB will be wound down from September, when things could prove to be totally different. No one knows what the future holds and we just have monitor things day to day and week to week. Things can change very quickly,’ added Mary.


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