As the Society of Saint Vincent de Paul marks 150 years helping the poor challenges remain for the charity.

Members of the Society of Saint Vincent de Paul travelled to the RDS from all over the country to celebrate 150 years of the organisation.

The society was founded by Frederic Ozanam in Paris in 1833 and today the society has a global membership of nine million people. In Ireland, there are over nine thousand members. In 1982 alone, they spent more than five thousand pounds on charitable works. 

Much of the work of the Society of St Vincent de Paul involves visiting and helping poor people in their homes and in hospitals. President of the Society in Ireland Don Mahony outlines what he sees as the main challenges facing the organsiation today.

The biggest challenge now facing the society arises from the growing unemployment in Ireland.

With over one million people now dependent on social welfare on a long term basis, the society hopes to help as many of these people as possible. 

The anniversary event included an exhibition of the history of the society and a mass celebrated by the Auxilliary Archbishop of Dublin, Very Reverend James Kavanagh.

An RTÉ News report broadcast on 16 October 1983. The reporter is Charlie Bird.