The Carleton Place Arena and Rotary Club of Carleton Place and Mississippi Mills played host to the 29 annual Women’s Fair on Saturday, Nov. 4.
The Women’s Fair featured a variety of different businesses and crafts including Surrounding Memories, The Cat’s Glass and Stittsville Wellness. All of the businesses were female led, with the exception of one male psychic.
This is the first year that the Rotary Club has hosted the event, which is normally hosted by the shelter. The rotary Club is a civic club that wants to work on community and international health. The Rotary Club of Carleton Place and Mississippi Mills is celebrating its 15 year anniversary.
The Rotary Club will be supporting the second-stage housing for five years, in partnership with the shelter. Right now, the shelter is an emergency shelter, meant to help women and children for approximately three months. The second-stage housing provides a safe space for women and children for up to a year.
“It’s a good stage for women to build up their skills again,” said Christine Jones who works with resource development at Lanark County Interval House. “It’s something that’s been in conversation the past five years.”
Over the last year, the Interval House has helped over 500 women with outreach services, 2,000 with hotline help and over 3,000 people in total, including their public education program.
These programs aren’t without a cost though, with the Interval House requiring about $120,000 every year to run all of their programs.
This is why events like the Women’s Fair are so important to the Interval House and those that it helps.
The Women’s Fair included a silent auction, cake raffle, door raffle and a 50-50 draw. Approximately half of the items come from vendors on site, while the other half comes from vendors that wouldn’t generally fit in with the fair atmosphere such as Giant Tiger, according to Sarah Bingham. Rotary Club member as well as former staff and current volunteer at the shelter.
One hundred per cent of the money raised during the event is going towards the Lanark County Interval House.
“Way more people are living with violence and abuse than we suspect,” said Bingham. “The visibility and high-profile of this says ‘we care.’”
Anyone dealing with domestic violence or abuse can call the 24 hour Crisis Line for the Lanark Interval House at 1-800-267-7946.