By Lisa Cyr
Royal Lepage and the Revelstoke Women’s Shelter have teamed up to raise money for women and their children who are fleeing abuse. Royal Lepage’s National Garage Sale for Shelters is a national event, which has taken place in various locations across Canada for 11 years now.
“Royal LePage’s National Foundation for Shelter leads the way in making this annual event possible in communities across the country, but it was the collaboration between the fantastic Revelstoke Women’s Shelter team, their volunteers, the wonderful agents and staff at Royal LePage Revelstoke and our caring and generous community that made it all possible and allowed us to support our community in this meaningful way,“ said Sally Robertson, who organized the event with the help of Royal LePage and women’s shelter staff.
Revelstoke’s first Garage Sale for Shelter took place on Saturday May 11th; the first of many for years to come, hopes Robertson. “Great weather, great attendance, and great deals were had!”
Tied in as a natural extension of Revelstoke’s farmer’s markets in front of the Royal Lepage office, it was hard to miss the big Rotary tents and tables full of goods – clothes, sporting goods, kitchen ware, linens, stuffies, and more. The items, which were all donated by community members and local organizations, allowed for the event to raise over $2400 thanks to the 150-200 shoppers that came by, and an additional $500 in donations from passers-by.
Every Dollar Counts
For Lynn Loeppky, Executive Director of the Revelstoke Women’s Shelter, every dollar raised counts. 100% of the funds go towards the operating budget to fund 3 of the beds (the other 5 are funded by the BC Housing) and help make the space as comfortable as possible to those staying at the Forsythe House. “We were even able to keep some of the donated items – like a beautiful patio set for our back yard garden, a portable heater, playpen, some clothes, blankets, dishes and glasses.” Other donated items such as blankets and linens will be used for the Extreme Weather Shelter, which will be operational this Winter.
Other funds may also be used to help fund the shelter’s outreach work with women at risk in the community, as well as its Moving Forward Program and Moving Mountains men’s program. The Moving Forward program, which is open to any woman in the community, offers free yoga, art classes, meditation and outings. The Moving Mountains men’s program offers campfires and activities where men can come together to support and socialize with each other.
Setting a precedent
Naturally, the success brought in by this year’s event has now set a precedent. The National Garage Sale for Shelter is a unique way for our community to work together and to recognize the work our local women’s shelter does, and to support it in carrying out its mandate to provide women and children fleeing abuse with temporary shelter and a safe space where they can get back on their feet. The hope is that next year’s event will build on this year’s, so please consider donating to the shelter for next year’s event.