- About us
The Depaul Group began in 1989 in response to the growing number of homeless people on the streets of London.
The initial idea emerged from The Passage Day Centre, in Victoria, a project of the Daughters of Charity of St Vincent de Paul.
Sister Barbara Smith, who was then Director of The Passage, and her management team and trustees brought their proposal to Cardinal Basil Hume who agreed to be Patron of the new charity Depaul Trust and support its inception.
The founder members were the Daughters of Charity of St Vincent de Paul, the Society of St Vincent de Paul, and The Passage Day Centre – all of which have their roots in the life and work of Saint Vincent de Paul (1581-1660).
Sister Sarah King-Turner was appointed as the first Director and built the infrastructure in London as well as leading on its first project developments.
In those early years in London, Depaul was proud to have the unstinting support of Diana, Princess of Wales who visited Depaul projects regularly, making time to sit and talk to residents in our hostels for single homeless young people aged from 16 to 25.
In 2002, Mark McGreevy took over as Director, and he inspired and led the national and international expansion of the Depaul Group over the next few years, for which he was awarded an OBE in January 2015.
Depaul quickly grew into a national charity in the UK and, from 2002, expanded internationally, starting in Ireland.
Two years later, Depaul International, then known as The Depaul Foundation, was formed to be parent organisation to the burgeoning global group – with the aim of tackling homelessness at a worldwide level.
Depaul Slovensko, in Slovakia, was registered in 2006, Depaul Kharkiv, in Ukraine, was born the following year, and Depaul USA in 2008.
The most recent addition to the Group is Depaul France which arrived in 2013.
Each member of the Depaul Group, and Depaul International, owes its inspiration and its Values to Vincent de Paul, a major social reformer in 17th Century France.
Vincent de Paul reached out to the poor and the disenfranchised, valuing each and every person.
He attracted a large group of supporters and volunteers, whom he inspired with his love for the poor, building bridges between rich people and those living in poverty.
Vincent de Paul devoted his life to helping the poor, sick and needy and was canonised in 1737. He is often referred to as “the Saint of Charity”.
Vincentian Values are key to the foundation and work of the Depaul Group and all its national charities.
These values include a commitment to help the poorest of the poor – and to place actions ahead of words.
Depaul UK focuses on young people in crisis and beyond.
We support young people by:
- Offering a safe place to stay in a crisis,
- Helping them to take the step from homelessness into stable housing, and
- Providing specialist long-term support to help get lives back on track.
The Depaul Box Company
Do you want to help homeless young people but don't know where to start?
If you are moving house or putting stuff in storage, use the Depaul Box Company!
Instead of just relying on donations, the Depaul Box Company is our way to raise funds for our work while supplying you with boxes when you need them.
Our boxes look, cost and work exactly the same as all the others out there. The only difference is ours do a lot of good for the homeless.
By using a box, you can ensure a young person doesn’t have to sleep on one!
Nightstop helps homeless young people find a safe place to stay, one night at a time.
Communities and charities run Nightstops in 33 locations around the UK - giving nearly 1,700 young people a bed for the night in 2014 alone.
Depaul UK coordinates the Nightstop Network and runs Nightstops in London, the North East, the North West and Cumbria.