The South Okanagan Women in Need Society raised over $30,000 through their Walk in Her Shoes event on Friday.
The total of $30,770 isn’t even the end of it, according to organizers, who said money is still coming in from donors who weren’t able to make it to the walk, which is intended to promote safety in the home for women.
“We were hoping for $25,000, and money is still coming in, so we’re very, very happy,” said SOWINS executive director Debbie Scarborough, adding that around 100 people participated.
The event is intended to be a collective show of support for women who face domestic violence to send a message that they aren’t alone, while also acting as SOWINS’s major fundraiser of the year.
On top of the 100-or-so people walking, the event had music, booths and a number of areas with thousands of flags planted as a visual reminder of the impact of SOWINS and those the group has yet to reach. That included 2,339 for the number of times a woman is provided a bed by the non-profit and the 1,483 turned away due to over capacity.
“(It’s) one of the things you hear audibly, and then you see it for visual and, now, tactile, everyone’s pulling them out,” Scarborough said.
“We’ve had some people that were just — last year, especially; I didn’t see as many people this year — just sitting there and remembering someone that they lost.”
Organizer Marni Adams said she was impressed with the success, especially because the planning began late this year.
“That being said, we certainly saw the support of the community, which is fabulous,” she said. “What we really saw this year was building into the next few years to make this even bigger.”