Dinner raises $3800 for Women’s Refuge
Whare Manaaki Porirua Women’s Refuge have one thing to smile about in a tough environment - their own fundraising.
The small team at one of the two Women’s Refuge groups in the city, which looks after predominantly Maori women and children, raised more than $3800 at a function hosted by Porirua Club on August 20.
It was their third annual ‘‘Black and White Gala’’, coorganiser Caroline Herewini said - $1500 was raised the first year, $3000 the second and $3852 this time. About 80 people attended this year and gift baskets, restaurant vouchers and mystery items were auctioned.
‘‘We were absolutely over the moon with what happened on the night,’’ she said. ‘‘We had a lot of items donated by very generous sponsors and were supported by our MPs Jan Logie and Kris Faafoi. It was a fabulous occasion and that money will really make a difference.’’
The White Ribbon riders also contributed $500.
The focus for fundraising this year was on children, coorganiser Sharmaine Rowe said, and recognising the impact domestic violence had on them.
She said just over 42 per cent of Women’s Refuge funding comes from central government, but each branch needs to come up with ways of topping up the budget. A national appeal helps, but more was always needed for the 1000 women, plus children, that are assisted by Women’s Refuge in Porirua and Kapiti each year.
Food, rental accommodation and even items like firewood were among the costs incurred.
There are just four staff at Whare Manaaki, who are based in Pember House in Porirua’s CBD, along with three at the other Porirua Women’s Refuge.
It’s not a nine-to-five working week, Herewini said, even though that’s what employees are paid for.
‘‘We have the phone go off at 2am and we need to be ready to go - we can’t pick and choose the hours. It can be relentless and tough but you just do it. Some women might have one child to look after, some might have 12 they have to take with them, so we need to be ready for anything and everything.’’
The money raised at the Porirua Club - who were incredibly supportive, Herewini said - was heartening and would spur them on to raise even more next year. the
From left, Margaret Macdonald, Sharmaine Rowe and Caroline Herewini with the proceeds from Porirua Women’s Refuge’s function.