Submitted by Nelson and District Women’s Centre
Since 1973, the Nelson and District Women’s Centre has played a vital role in our community, offering women a space to lift one another up, build skills, take refuge and hone our politics. As Canada’s oldest rural women’s centre, it has organized countless events, from women’s festivals to political rallies and skill-building workshops.
Right now, though, it faces a major budget deficit and needs its community to come together in support.
Over the past two years, the Nelson and District Women’s Centre has been navigating strife and conflict. Difficult conversations have flared up about the future of the women’s centre, its mandate, and who it needs to serve. Amidst staff and board member resignations, energy and resources were spread thin. Thankfully, positive momentum is building once again.
The 2019 West Kootenay Women’s Association’s annual general meeting, held on Dec. 4, brought out a record number of people invested in the future of the centre. A new board of 11 directors was elected, bringing diverse viewpoints, vital skills and intergenerational wisdom to the table. People are finding pathways out of conflict and into real dialogue.
But there’s a catch. The new board stepped up and was immediately faced with a short-term budget deficit of $40,000. In order to keep the doors open and programs running, the centre needs to raise a phenomenal amount of money in a very short amount of time: between now and the end of March.
Part of the strategy for raising that money is an online fundraiser, launched on Feb. 10 and seeking to bring in $15,000. Contributors are able to receive a small gift in gratitude for their support, spotlighting local creators: a roleplaying game by local designer Avery Alder, and limited-run art postcards featuring the work of Kiala Löytömäki.
In keeping with many online crowdfunding campaigns, this one is all-or-nothing: donations only get processed if it clears the $15,000 mark.
The fundraiser is live at www.fundrazr.com/nelsonwomenscentre from now until March 11.
The Nelson and District Women’s Centre will also be hosting a fundraising event at The Royal on March 8, featuring live acoustic sets from local artists. More details will be announced soon. Mark your calendars!