To mark International Women’s Day on March 8, 2022, The Howe Sound Women’s Centre (HSWC) is launching an online auction in support of women and children in need in the Sea to Sky Corridor.
“We wanted to continue to mark International Women’s Day to celebrate advances in equality and the need to continue to push for equality for femme-identifying folks in our communities,” HSWC executive director Ashley Oakes says.
HSWC is urging the community to make a direct impact on those in need by participating in this year’s event, an online auction that will showcase work that women in the community are doing.
This auction is a chance for women to support each other through business highlights. HSWC will post logos on its online portal and advertise through social media which will promote local businesses including those women-led businesses that support its work.
The auction will raise needed funds to run programs and provide services to women and children in the Squamish and Whistler communities. These proceeds are used to support under-funded vital programs at both HSWC’s Whistler and Squamish drop-in centre locations.
HSWC has provided an essential service in the Sea to Sky region since 1981, offering support and services for survivors of gender-based violence, including a 24-hour sexual assault response team that will go out to meet women anywhere in the corridor.
“We call it the Traverse Project because our staff will traverse the sea to sky to help women in need,” Oakes says.
“The reason we feel it’s important in our area is the vastness of the area and the lack of public transit options.”
HSWC serves the needs of women and trans, non-binary, and two-spirit survivors of intimate partner violence.
The women’s centre has grown significantly in the last several years, numbering 54 diverse staff members providing services throughout the area.
“The work wouldn’t be able to be done without the many incredible and passionate staff and volunteers who breathe so much life in their work and provide incredible support for survivors,” Oakes says.
“They are worthy of so much celebration because the work isn’t always easy and they come in prepared to tackle it every day.”
To learn more and to support HSWC’s online fundraiser, visit www.hswc.ca/iwd.