More Vinnies heartbreak in "sign of the times"

In what a store director describes as a "sign of the times", thieves broke into a St Vincent de Paul store in western NSW last week and stole a safe in the second similar incident affecting a Vinnies shop in a fortnight.

The break-in comes only a week after a similar theft from a Vinnies centre in Whyalla, South Australia, in which money, food and phone vouchers worth $2000 were taken and the offices ransacked.

Vinnies Cowra store director Dave Jessett told the Cowra Guardian that the thieves completely removed a safe from the building, and stole money from a second safe.

Mr Jessett pointed out that if the thieves needed money, they probably would have got assistance if they asked, without needing to break into the building.

About $200-250 worth of cash was stolen from the premises, but Mr Jessett said the actual cost to the organisation would be higher.

They will have to replace the safe and fix the cabinet the safe was held in, and are now looking to install a new security system.

Store volunteers are particularly upset since all the profits are given back to people in need in the local community.

Meanwhile, Whyalla City Council has donated $1000 to the volunteers at the Vinnies centre after it was sadly broken in to a fortnight ago.

After adding up all that was stolen and broken, St Vincent de Paul was out of pocket by about $2000, the Whyalla News reports.

President Helen Jackson was ever-grateful to the council for their generosity and said it was definitely unexpected.

"It's lovely to know that so many people care and the community it behind us," she said.

The Whyalla News says Mayor Jim Pollock was extremely pleased to present the cheque to a group of volunteers that had done so much for the community.

"(The) council totally respects the efforts of St Vinnies and what they provide to the community and they saw a need to give a donation," Mayor Pollock said.

Thieves hit Vinnies (Cowra Guardian, 19/9/06)
Council backs Vinnies (Whyalla News, 15/9/06)

LINKS (not necessarily endorsed by Church Resources)
St Vincent de Paul Society Australia

Thieves plunder Vinnies centre (CathNews 13/9/06)
Older people striking financial trouble: Vinnies (CathNews 8/9/06)
New fees tip balance for Wodonga Vinnies (CathNews 8/8/06)
Wiggles endorse Vinnies Christmas Appeal (CathNews 22/10/03)

19 Sep 2006