Women's Center Fundraising

National Domestic Violence Awareness Month is winding down.

But experts say it’s always worth remembering that access to safety if a woman and her children are in danger can mean the difference between life and death.

The Women’s Center in Marquette has met that need in Marquette and Alger Counties for more than 35 years.

It’s provided emergency shelter, counseling and support to well over 20,000 women.

The recent Evening of Elegance formal dining fundraiser netted the Women’s Center nearly $15,000.

But events like that only make up a part of the community fundraising that the Women’s Center has to do.

Women’s Center executive director Phyllis Loonsfoot says about 75% of the center’s operating expenses come from federal and state grants.

She says the organization has to generate the other 25% — about $200,000 per year — from fundraising events and donations from businesses and individual people.

In 2010, Loonsfoot was named the director of the Harbor House domestic violence shelter in order to cut costs for the two organizations.

The Women’s Center and Harbor House had separate directors prior to that time.