Nanaimo women's shelter the chosen charity for national lacrosse tournament

By Spencer Sterritt
July 12, 2018 - 5:29pm

Violet Hayes and Frank Dubenski announcing Island Crisis Care Society was chosen as the supported charity for the upcoming President's Cup.Spencer Sterritt/NanaimoNewsNOW

NANAIMO — Anyone buying a 50/50 ticket at the upcoming President's Cup lacrosse tournament in Nanaimo will know their money is going to a good cause.

Ten per cent of the 50/50 profits and $500 from the first 500 tournament passes sold will be donated to the fundraising campaign to expand Nanaimo's Samaritan House women's shelter. They're currently raising money for the $2 million expansion since they're chronically over-capacity.

“If we get the crowds which we think are going to come out, we should be able to pass over a nice donation to the Samaritan House expansion,” tournament representative Frank Dubenski told NanaimoNewsNOW.

With 36 games spread over eight days from Aug. 26 to Sept. 2, Dubenski said he anticipated roughly 5,000 visits to Frank Crane Arena.

When first working on the President's Cup tournament in Nanaimo, he said they wanted to honour the spirit and Indigenous history of lacrosse, which meant making sure it not only provided intense, exciting play but also helped the community.

Violet Hayes, executive director of Island Crisis Care Society who runs Samaritan House, said having their expansion campaign included in the sizable tournament and receiving such community support was a real gift for their campaign.

“Getting the word out and the support means so much.”

Samaritan House is constantly full. In January 2018, 101 women were turned away because there was no room.

Their expansion campaign is currently still in the early stages of fundraising, but Hayes said it's gone well so far and they've heard great things from the community.


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