The Vice President of St Vincent de Paul in the North West has said that families are still facing financial hardship at Christmas.
This year, the charity continued to be extremely busy on Christmas eve as they received calls from people in need from across the county.
Ms. Rosa Glackin said: “We were extremely busy on Christmas Eve. The volunteer groups in every area of the county were still delivering on Christmas Eve.
“We received a high number of calls this year. However, we were able to respond to each and every call,” she said.
The Letterkenny-based spokesperson said that families are still facing as much financial hardship as they did three or four years ago and that there is no sign of economic respite, as yet, in the North West.
She said: “There is no sign of the financial burden easing on families, as yet.
“This Christmas would certainly have been as busy as Christmases were three or four years ago.
“We didn't see any change in circumstances this year.”
She added that families are continuing to strain under a financial strain and that it appeared that families where someone was sick and having to travel to Galway or Dublin were under a lot of financial strain.
“There are a lot of families, where someone is ill and has to travel to Galway or Dublin being under financial strain. There seems to be a huge increase in this area,” she said.
There has been a 10 per cent increase on those looking for help from the organisation on a national front.
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This Christmas, over 140,000 people in communities across the country asked the organisation for help with food, fuel and basic clothing.
The organisation's motto is to eliminate the causes of poverty.
There are no local figures available, as yet.
Ms. Glackin said that this year, the generosity of individuals, schools and businesses has been hugely appreciated.
“We got plenty of donations of food, vouchers and cash donations from people, schools and businesses this year.
“Everyone was so generous and we would like to thank them all for their generosity,” she said.
People who feel that they would like to contact the organisation, in confidence, can do so by going to the official page of the organisation.
Volunteers from SVP will then visit them within ten days of your seeking their help. Volunteers will then discuss their issues with them in a confidential, non judgemental fashion.
You can learn more by going to the SVP website at https://www.svp.ie/Get-Help/Request-help-online.aspx.
You can also contact people at local level in Donegal.