Elvira Kurt fundraiser online, watch and donate
The cancellation of community events has left My Friend’s House with a $20,000 shortfall in fundraising revenue.
The Collingwood based shelter for abused women and children serves this area, is looking for ways to make up that shortfall.
My Friend’s House is maintaining operations, and is currently at capacity.
“It’s hard and it’s hard for the women who are staying with us. We are maintaining right now but we don’t know what the future holds so it’s really day-by-day right now. Currently, we are worried about finances,” said executive director Alison FitzGerald. “The government has announced funding to help charities but right now we have no idea what that looks like and we may not know for quite some time.”
She said it is understood that there will be funding to help with costs incurred by the pandemic but the shelter’s current concern is making up for lost revenue. It is responsible for raising $400,000 in operating costs each year, but the sudden loss of fundraising revenue has caused them to fall short of that goal.
Sheltering at home is not safe for survivors of gender-based violence when home is where they face harassment and violence, where their lives may be threatened, said FitzGerald.
If an abused woman is required to stay home with her partner, she can’t reach out for support.
“That’s a really scary place to be so we believe that women are going to try to hang tight as much as they possibly can in that environment,” said FitzGerald. “It is a scary time for them, to be trapped in their home.”
That’s why it’s so important for shelters to remain open at this time.
Their crisis line is operational and, when full, the shelter helps women get to other locations that do have space. Because they have reduced their volunteer contingent to minimize interactions, staff is doing pick-ups and have implemented strict protocols for keeping a safe distance to reduce exposure.
“This whole next year is unknown,” said FitzGerald. “The costs just keep going up and up. We’re worried right now, as is every non-profit.”
A live show with legendary stand-up comedian Elvira Kurt originally set to take place at Blue Mountain is now being live streamed on March 27.
Laugh Together While Apart in support of My Friend’s House will be streamed live on YouTube at 7 p.m. People are asked to logon without having to purchase a ticket and donate at www.myfriendshouse.ca.
An April concert with the band My Son the Hurricane is cancelled with the hope of rescheduling at a later date. People are being asked to consider redirecting their refunded ticket money as a donation.