Thursday, August 30, 2012


St. Vincent de Paul Drivers Ricardo Topete and Johnny Marin provided a home pickup for an OWN Oprah Winfrey Network series, Home Made Simple, hosted by Paige Davis, formerly of TLC's Trading Spaces. Our drivers joined the reality TV crew for a shoot in Northridge, California, August 29, 2012 about a family home's makeover in over 100 degree heat. "A real meaningful daily pickup," said Marin.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012


Vincentians from San Gabriel, South San Fernando, Ventura and Our Lady of the Angels Districts participated in Ozanam Orientation at St. Finbar Catholic Church in Burbank, California, August 25, 2012. The training was lead by Council of Los Angeles' Susana Santana, Ron Mulvihill and John De La Fontaine.

Monday, August 27, 2012


On Saturday, August 18, 2012, representatives of St. Mark’s-in-the-Valley Episcopal Church visited the Circle V Ranch Camp in the Santa Ynez Valley and presented a $10,000 donation check to Camp representatives of the Society of St. Vincent de Paul Los Angeles Council, operators of the Camp. The donation was a portion of funds raised at the 3rd Annual St. Mark’s Cellar Classic: An Auction of Rare & Fines Wines on July 28, 2012, and are designated for camp scholarships known as “camperships” to send Santa Ynez Valley area children to the Circle V Ranch Camp in the summer of 2013.

The Rev. Dr. Randall Day, St. Mark’s Priest & Rector remarked, “It is no secret that your friends at St. Mark’s-in-the-Valley Episcopal Church hold your work at Circle V Ranch Camp in the highest regard. You have, and you meet, an important challenge—compassionately instilling hope in children and youth. We are grateful that you welcome the involvement of our faith community in supporting your goals. We hope that our support will grow in usefulness from year to year and that our friendship within the one Body of Christ will continue to strengthen. For the second year, on behalf of the Wardens, Vestry and people of St. Mark’s, we are so pleased to be able to support Circle V Ranch Camp so Santa Ynez Valley kids can have the formative experience of this exceptional camp here in the Valley.”

Steve Pepe, co-chair of St. Mark’s Cellar Classic stated, “Our annual Cellar Classic raises funds to allow St. Mark’s to carry out its role as a public institution that serves the Santa Ynez Valley very widely; and our donation to the Circle V Ranch Camp—is one of more than 40 non-profit organizations and programs St. Mark’s assisted this year. We are delighted that members of the Friends of Circle V Ranch Camp donated wine and attended the Cellar Classic—and are happy to present this $10,000 donation in recognition and support of all the good you do.”

David Fields, Executive Director of the Society of St. Vincent de Paul Los Angeles Council, operators of the Circle V Ranch Camp expressed his gratitude, “We deeply appreciate the continuing support of St. Mark’s-in-the-Valley Episcopal Church; and on behalf of the Circle V Ranch Camp staff, counselors and most importantly, the kids; we are so grateful for this incredibly generous gift, that doubles the amount donated last summer.”

Sally Corlett, resident of Santa Ynez and Founder of the Friends of Circle V Ranch Camp expressed her gratitude along with Ray Lopez, Circle V Ranch Camp Director who added, “This donation is such an incredible demonstration of faith in works—that allows us to share Circle V with even more children. God bless everyone at St. Mark’s and the community that made this possible again!”

Friday, August 24, 2012

Gerry Ferraro Moreno, of Oxnard, receives applause from state Sen. Tony Strickland and members of the Society of St. Vincent de Paul during a recent awards luncheon in her honor.

Gerry Ferraro Moreno, of Oxnard, receives applause from state Sen. Tony Strickland and members of the Society of St. Vincent de Paul during a recent awards luncheon in her honor. 

Growing up in an Italian family in Lincoln Heights, Gerry Ferraro Moreno never gave a second thought to helping neighbors in need.

"Whether it was sharing food from the garden, homemade wine, helping fix a fence ... we used to walk to the St. Vincent de Paul store at Five Points in Lincoln Heights," recalled Moreno, of Oxnard, and now retired. "My family would call them when there were usable discards they might need."

Moreno's current charitable involvements include supporting the St. Vincent de Paul Society's efforts to help homeless and displaced individuals with housing in Ventura County.

"They need to raise funds for this endeavor," said Moreno, who has been involved in fundraising events at St. Joseph's Health and Retirement Center in Ojai for several years. "My idea is to arrange shelter and teach them how to take care of themselves in the process. I commend the St. Vincent de Paul Society for helping the less fortunate among us, and they need all of the help they can get."

The Society of St. Vincent de Paul is hoping to partner with other organizations to develop a year-round solution to homelessness in Ventura County, said David Fields, executive director of the Society of St. Vincent de Paul in Los Angeles.

"Gerry has shown tremendous compassion for those individuals and families that are negatively impacted by not having a home," Fields said. "She has a history of volunteering in the community, and her support to our achieving our goals is very significant."

For these reasons, Moreno was honored with the Saint's Award from the Society of St. Vincent de Paul on Aug. 17 at her family's restaurant, La Dolce Vita, in Heritage Square in Oxnard.

"The Society of St. Vincent de Paul is primarily an organization of volunteers," Fields said. "People like Gerry help to strengthen our efforts and develop strong community ties."

Earning praise from St. Vincent de Paul is an honor, Moreno said. "I hope to be of service to their endeavors here in Ventura County," Moreno said.

As Moreno was growing up, her aunt owned a restaurant in Alhambra and her mother, a single parent of three, was a waitress there.

"Both my mother and aunt were very involved with our local parish, putting on events at the school or church, cooking for the priests, all of this was second nature to them," Moreno said. "My aunts and uncles were very involved with many charitable and civic organizations. I cannot remember a time when we kids were not helping the adults with their endeavors in the community."

Moreno's daughter, Michelle Kenney, remembers when La Dolce Vita was "the bus stop for the local grammar school. If the parents didn't pick up their kids right away, we took care of them, gave them after-school snacks and made sure they were safe until their parents arrived. We employed all of the local kids in the area at one point or another. My mom was very good about donating for many charities and fundraisers. She never said 'no.' "

Moreno was taught by her mother to help the homeless and less fortunate, and passed this lesson on to her own children, Kenney said.

"My younger sister — who now owns her own restaurant, as well — and I are following in my mother's footsteps in trying to help and provide for others as much as possible with donations and volunteerism wherever and whenever it is needed," Kenney said. "If this giving behavior is passed down to my kids and future generations, we have done our jobs to create the 'pay it forward' attitude."

Help yourself. Help Others. Shop St. Vincent de Paul Thrift Store.

Visit our 3 locations!

Los Angeles 210 North Avenue 21, Los Angeles, CA 90031
Long Beach 2750 Pacific Coast Highway, Long Beach, CA 90804
Oxnard 1258 Saviers Rd. Oxnard, CA 93033

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Gerry Moreno Gets Society's Saints Award

The Society's Saints Award for community service and advocacy for the poor was presented to Gerry Moreno of Oxnard Friday, August 19, 2012, by Executive Director David Fields at La Dolce Vita, an Oxnard restaurant owned by Gerry's daughter Michelle. State Senator Tony Strickland also presented Gerry with a certificate of thanks from the California State Senate. Gerry was joined by daughter Cathie, Oxnard community leaders, friends and St. Vincent de Paul staff. Gerry, a 39-year Oxnard resident, owned a gormet food store and cafe on Oxnard's Hollywood Beach. 

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Join us Thursday, August 9 at the Downtown LA Artwalk!

St. Vincent de Paul's Glamour to Go traveling boutique will once again be there showing off vintage clothes, shoes, jewelry, and knickknacks. Visit us on Spring St. in the Food Truck Lot.

Monday, August 6, 2012

The Society of St. Vincent de Paul Welcomes Kolping Youth Camp

The Society of St. Vincent de Paul is pleased to welcome visitors from the Kolping Youth Camp. Kolping is an international Catholic organization which combats poverty and helps hundreds of thousands of people around the world. The group of German youth is here to help in a re-organization project at St. Vincent de Paul’s Thrift Store in Los Angeles. Many of the young men and women have been traveling around the globe volunteering at schools, hospitals, and homeless shelters. They all agree that it is a great way to meet new people with the same ideology while improving the lives of those in need. It is a great short term mission for those who do not have the time to commit to longer projects. They will spend 19 days in Los Angeles hoping to gain new philanthropic experiences through social work, family interaction, and activities with the homeless, as well as getting a little siteseeing in.