With the one of the highest rates of poverty in the United States, Philadelphia has no shortage of families in need. But Two Philadelphia-based organizations are working together to help some of those families.

The Society of St. Vincent de Paul of Philadelphia has partnered with Bensalem-based 2nd Avenue Value Stores to offer families gift cards to purchase the items they need at the discount stores.


Michelle DiCola, a single mother of three, is just one of the individuals that has benefitted from this program. Struggling to make ends meet while working full time and pursuing a nursing degree, DiCola needed help and found it at the Society of St. Vincent de Paul of Philadelphia. Over her seven-year relationship with the organization, Michelle has received assistance with her children and studying — even becoming a volunteer.

The support she received through the 2nd Avenue Value Store gift card allowed DiCola to purchase quality clothing items for her children to wear to school, in addition to outfits for her job interviews.

In little more than a year since the partnership’s inception, more than 20 families have been assisted.

Among its 10 thrift stores in the Mid-Atlantic region, 2nd Avenue runs three in the Philadelphia Archdiocese: Northeast Philadelphia, Kensington and North Wales.

More than 500 local volunteers with the St. Vincent de Paul Society of Philadelphia help the poor, the shut-ins, the bereaved and other people through projects run by parish-based committees, or conferences.