Life Skills

Through its systemic change programs, the Society of St. Vincent de Paul Detroit empowers people at critical moments in their journeys. Its Bridges of Hope, Journey to Housing and Justice Initiative programs gets people ready to take the next step by offering them the information, tools and support they need to begin their path out of poverty and onto a more stable path.

Bridges to HOPE

Bridges to HOPE is a partnership between St. John Providence (SJP), Society of St. Vincent de Paul (SVdP), and Catholic Charities of Southeast Michigan

Our Mission

The Bridges to HOPE mission is to shrink the barriers to success posed by economic class differences among people and groups. Based on Bridges out of Poverty by Aha! Process, Inc., Bridges to HOPE assists those in poverty begin their journey to self-sufficiency. Our program is intended to enhance the quality of life for everyone and create a model for other communities. The program is also built on an evidence-based model and is designed to be sustainable year after year while adapting to the needs of the community. Helping our participants create their own path to a more secure and successful future is our objective.

How the program works

Bridges to HOPE is a NO COST program offering life planning lessons for individuals interested in creating a more stable, secure future for their family. There are two sessions per week, on Tuesday and Thursday, for eight weeks. Each session is two hours long. Participants receive a stipend (commitment form required), a “Getting Ahead in a Just-Gettin’-By World” workbook, transportation (upon request), and meals at each workshop.

For more information on signing up for this program, please visit the St. John Providence Website

Journey to Housing

St. Vincent de Paul’s Journey to Housing program seeks to solve the problem of homelessness in northwestern Wayne County communities. The Journey to Housing Program supports those in need of shelter by providing them with move-in costs, furniture, household goods and monthly rent subsidy until the family can become financially independent (with 12-18 months of weekly counseling). We help the family work towards self-sufficiency and assist the family with budgeting, household management, parenting skills and more.

If you are in need of shelter, please contact your local parish and you will be referred to a St. Vincent de Paul in the Metro-West District (the cities of Canton, Dearborn, Dearborn Heights, Garden City, Inkster, Livonia, Northville, Plymouth, Redford, Wayne, and Westland). Priority placement will be given to families with children and current living situations will be taken into consideration. After an interview and evaluation, it will be determined if you qualify for our Journey to Housing Program.

Please contact us at for more information.

Justice Initiative

Justice Initiative is a special work of the Society of St. Vincent de Paul. Volunteers reach out with hope to the incarcerated – both while they are inside and once they are released. They minister to their physical, emotional and spiritual needs with mentoring, pastoral services, caring visits, food, clothing and any other form of support we can provide to enable them to effectively transition into society.

Volunteers in this program:

  • Visit inmates on a one-on-one basis or conduct worship or educational community sessions
  • Provide spiritual support, friendship and prayer for inmates
  • Provide post release financial and mentoring assistance
  • Provide assistance with housing, clothing and other necessities

To reach a Justice Initiative volunteer, please call 855-878-3754 or email