NANAIMO — On International Women's Day, a local women's shelter received an incredible gift from a group of Nanaimo and Ladysmith women trying to make a change.
The 100+ Women Who Care Mid-Island group is a collection of more than 100 women who meet several times a year, select a charity to donate to at that meeting and everyone in attendance gives $100.
After their most recent meeting on Wednesday, March 7, the group arrived at a major milestone.
Patrice Mauriks with the group said given the amount of women who were at the meeting and how many are involved, she's confident they reached the $100,000 donation mark.
“It's been extremely inspiring and exciting,” she told NanaimoNewsNOW. “It's really fantastic to be part of a group that organically comes together and is able to have an impact on local charities.”
Since the group was formed in 2016, they've donated to women-focused charities such as Haven Society, the Ladysmith Resources Centre and Nanaimo Community Hospice. They've also expanded and there's now 100 Women Who Care groups in the Oceanside and Cowichan areas.
“Women, when they get together, they get stuff done,” Mauriks said.
The most recent recipient is the Island Crisis Care Society and their More Room for Hope campaign, which is raising $2 million for an expansion to their Samaritan House women's shelter on Nicol St.
The Society was nominated several times. “It was obviously one that was very near and dear to the hearts of many of the women in our group,” Mauriks said.
Though the $13,500 is a small drop in the much larger pool of money needed for the campaign, Ronell Bosman said it means the world to the Society, especially since their campaign only recently launched.
“It's very encouraging to see how people get together and support the campaign,” she told NanaimoNewsNOW.
The $2 million expansion will double the size of the shelter, making room for more women seeking shelter for the night and providing space for families as well. More programs and services will also be offered.
“We'll have space for supportive groups for women, some life skills training and get some people from the community into our building to meet our women there because sometimes they don't have the courage to go out and do things on their own (since) they feel too overwhelmed.”
Bosman said the expansion will give women in need the space to relax and focus on what comes next.
“If people have a safe place where they can breathe and get support 24/7, it helps them to focus on something other than 'Where am I sleeping tonight, what am I going to eat tomorrow night.' When they're homeless, they can't even look at any goals. They just want to survive.”
Donations to the More Room for Hope campaign can be made online.
On Twitter: @spencer_sterrit
City of Nanaimo crews race to clear storm drains following massive snowfall
NANAIMO — While two feet of snow melts to a slushy mess around Nanaimo, crews are busy clearing...
READ MORE +
Man pleads guilty to 2017 murder at Nanaimo's Howard Johnson Hotel
NANAIMO — A man admitted to murdering another man in the lobby of the now-closed Howard Johnson...
READ MORE +
Persistent Parksville entrepreneur impresses on historic Dragons' Den episode
NANAIMO — What was a business-saving appearance on the CBC show Dragons' Den also turned into a...
READ MORE +