For WIN House, 2017 has been a tremendous year of giving by the community of Edmonton. Almost every day, someone comes to our business office, calls us on the phone, or plans an event in order to secure donations for the women and children who stay in our shelters.

Whether it is a gala, a golf tournament or a haunted house, the number and creativity of events that people host for us is truly heartwarming. This year, over 70 events were implemented by WIN House supporters and the amount of money raised will go a long way in helping to support the programs and services our clients and their children access every day.

The donations come in many forms: monetary, material, and time spent by our volunteers. All of the events held for WIN House by your neighbours, co-workers, families and friends meant the world to us – clients, kids and staff – as do the number of amazing relationships that have been forged and built throughout the years.
To give an idea of some of the events, a few are listed below:

• Central Sewing Volunteers sewed enough quilts, children’s clothes, PJ’s, scarves, mitts and hats to fill one huge room;
• Scotiabank had their 20th Charity Golf Tournament for WIN House and donated $35,000! In fact, since the tournament began in 1999, participants have helped to raise over $1 million!;
• Girl To Girl: Young Women’s Empowerment Group wrapped Christmas presents at West Edmonton mall for days to raise money for WIN House;
• IT Masters celebrated their 20th year of supporting WIN House and has since donated over
$200,000 to date;
• The INVIS Angels in the Night showed up with over 20 people to hand deliver household items towards our Fresh Start Program;
• The Royal Glenora Ladies hosting a Christmas Luncheon for us and donating items and funds towards our program and services;
• BOMA Edmonton hosting a luncheon with over 500 of Edmonton Business owners to raise money for WIN House through a raffle and an amazing silent auction;
• At the annual Rohit’s Basket of Hope event, women came together to build 162 baskets to help remind our women that they are valued and cared for;
• Shopper’s Drug Mart, headed by Edmonton’s City Centre branch, collecting toiletries to fill over 150 shoe boxes for their Growing Women’s Health Campaign;
• The Legacy Plus Club donating 190 air mattresses and 50 pumps to give our women and their children a place to sleep in their new homes;
• CTV, 100.3 The Bear, 104.9 Virgin Radio and TSN 1260, along with Tim Hortons rallied the city to help build a mountain of toys for children staying at WIN House;
• The Edmonton Korean Canadian Women’s Association donated $5,000 towards the Fresh Start Program. To date they have donated over $15,000;
• Global News Give Me Shelter campaign helped make the holidays a bit brighter for women and children fleeing domestic violence;
• Edmonton Eskimos donated 296 pairs of shoes to WIN House. Each pair has marked the first steps in a journey towards an abuse-free life for our women;

Success for the department of Fund Development for WIN House also has come in the form of grants as well. In September we received an $81,800 grant from the Stollery Charitable Foundation to support the first year of a three-year pilot program that will train our childcare staff in trauma informed care as it relates to the children of WIN House. Working with our in-house counsellor, we will begin to identify, record, and report any adverse negative behaviour children may display as a result of witnessing or experiencing domestic abuse.

We also received a $65,300 grant from the Edmonton Community Foundation to cover the cost of our in-shelter register nurse so she can continue to provide medical assistance to our clients and their kids. Without this grant, we would not be able to support this most vital service to those who need it most.

WIN House also benefitted from a grant from St. Paul’s Foundation to completely replace the roof in one of the shelters. Leaks were coming in to our clients’ rooms, shingles were blowing off, and all in all, it was falling apart. St. Paul’s provided us with $12,000 to put on a new, dry, and safe roof that will last for years to come.

2nd Glance Clothes in Leduc and St. Andrew’s Thrift Shop each provided us with $5,000 to purchase new items for our Fresh Start program and purchase a new fridge and stove.

The Alberta Community and Social Services department provided WIN House with a grant of
$100,784 to assist with fire, safety, health and capacity needs we have experienced.

The Victorian Order of Nurses Edmonton Foundation donated $100,800.61 to help supplement the In-shelter Nursing Services program over the next many years.

We also had three direct mail campaigns at WIN House in 2017 – one in spring and two in December. Each was designed to retain or acquire new donors to WIN House as well as provide factual information and statistics on domestic abuse in Canada, Alberta and Edmonton.

All in all, 2017 was a wonderful year of giving. The women and children who find themselves at WIN House after fleeing domestic abuse often arrive with nothing in hand. By welcoming them into our shelters, providing them with clothes, warm food and safety as they try to navigate the next steps in their journey towards a life free from abuse of any kind, we are only doing one part in making a difference. Without the generosity, care and support of our community, none of what we do would be possible. We are all in this together and together, when we act, we can help make a change in the lives of those who need it most.