Vinnies on the move


Vinnies Capital Campaign co-chairmen Troy Buswell and Peter McBain flank Community Services minister Tony Simpson and Vinnies chief executive Mark Fitzpatrick.
Vinnies Capital Campaign co-chairmen Troy Buswell and Peter McBain flank Community Services minister Tony Simpson and Vinnies chief executive Mark Fitzpatrick.

Society chief executive Mark Fitzpatrick said demand for the agency’s services continued to increase and major changes must be implemented to move forward.

Mr Fitzpatrick turned the sod with Community Service Minster Tony Simpson on the site for the new building, which will replace the current Belmont-based head office.

The building will house a purpose-built depot, the Society’s emergency relief call centre, specialist youth and financial counselling services, and a new shop will also share the premises.

“Over the past five years, Vinnies has contributed $81.5 million to help people in the community who are doing it tough, and over that period there has been a 17 per cent increase (for services),” Mr Fitzpatrick said.

“Alarmingly, we expect that demand for our services will increase by an incredible 50 per cent in the next decade.”

Last year the Society delivered 32,000 household items through the Osborne Park depot, which also supports all of its metropolitan stores and many of its stores across the State.

“Unfortunately, after 25 years of operation in this location the demand for our services has meant that the depot has exceeded capacity,” Mr Fitzpatrick said.

“This limits the amount of people we can assist if we don’t move to a larger facility.”

A $5.7 million grant from Lotterywest has also been a welcome boost towards the capital campaigns requirement to raise $15 million for the project.

Since 1989, the Society has received 77 Lotterywest grants totalling $16.6 million.