During the pandemic the South Okanagan Women in Need Society (SOWINS) has seen a huge increase in demand for their services, making their annual fundraiser more important than ever this year.
The Share the Spirit campaign is an annual holiday fundraiser run by SOWINS, a charity that offers programs and services to women suffering from current or past violence and abuse.
“Every year SOWINS strives to ensure there is food on the table and gifts under a tree for clients who struggle to make ends meet,” said Stefanie Gale, volunteering and fundraising chair for the campaign. “The Share the Spirit campaign ensures our clients, women and children in our communities have a Christmas.”
One of the biggest nights of their fundraising campaign is coming up Saturday, Dec. 5 at TIME Winery.
TIME Winery and SOWINS are inviting the community to their “Time to Give” event Dec. 5 from noon to 4 p.m.
Donors are invited to give back to their community by bringing unwrapped gifts or cash donations to help build 150 Holiday Hampers for women and children in need. Social distancing and mask wearing will be mandatory.
Due to COVID-19, many Okanagan families have been trapped in homes where violence and abuse is reoccurring. The pandemic has caused more individuals to seek refuge through SOWINS than ever before, many of whom arrive with very little belongings, said Gale.
“Single women and families are choosing to leave abusive situations and strive to rebuild their lives without living in fear,” said Gale. She goes on to say “After paying for rent, food and utilities, there is often little left over for special meals or gifts.”
Donations can include anything from kitchen essentials, bed linens, and grocery gift cards, to pyjamas, headphones, games, and clothing of all kinds. Donors are encouraged to purchase gifts from local companies and to follow the gift guidelines listed on sowins.com.
Ten per cent of retail and restaurant sales will go to SOWINS that day.