History of St. Vincent de Paul

Although the Cincinnati Council of St. Vincent de Paul is part of an international organization, it is very much a grassroots charity. The Cincinnati Council raises money and creates programs targeting the specific needs of local residents, while drawing on the experiences of other councils throughout the country. Whenever appropriate, these councils work cooperatively to better help people in need.

History of St. Vincent de Paul

The Society of St. Vincent de Paul traces its origins to Paris in 1833, where six university students — spurred by the challenges of their classmates — began to meet the needs of the city's suffering poor.

The students walked the streets of Paris, engaging in person-to-person ministry to the poor, confident that Christ would be revealed through their loving acts. Inspired by our founder Frederic Ozanam and patron St. Vincent de Paul, the tiny group today is an international organization with members in 150 countries, helping others through neighborhood ministry.

The Cincinnati District Council has been working personally with Cincinnati and Hamilton County neighbors for more than 140 years. Whether offering food to a single mom, comfort to those who are alone or warm coats to children during the cold winter months, our more than 900 volunteers live their faith in service to others.

We work personally with those in need, regardless of race or creed, to offer spiritual, emotional and material assistance. Personalized care via home visits to those in need has been the hallmark of our service. Our ability to reach the ‘dispersed poor’ in neighborhoods throughout Cincinnati is unparalleled.