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  • Writer's pictureMegan Stuke

A Huge Step Forward

Pandemic Life is wild, amiright? 

The Willow made it even more exciting by running a capital campaign through the world's biggest health crisis. We really like to keep things interesting.

We didn't *mean* to have a capital campaign during a pandemic. We decided in late 2019 to move forward with this project, and really kicked things off in January. Plans were made, strategies were developed, and we started working in earnest toward a goal of $700,000. The money would be spent on a second shelter home, some much-needed maintenance to our existing shelter home, and new furnishings for both homes. 

Just as things really got moving, March happened. Focus changed, finances got tight, and in-person meetings became impossible, basically overnight. I won't lie. I shed a few tears. A few million tears, in those early days of the pandemic. For all the reasons, but certainly in part because of my concern about our ability to complete the campaign, which suddenly became more critically important than ever.

I have cried almost every day since the pandemic started, at least for a minute, because we had to reduce our shelter capacity for the safety of our survivors and staff and it is awful knowing Stay-At-Home means so many people are at risk in close quarters with abusers. And we can't put nearly enough of them in our shelter now, or we put them at risk of catching COVID and spreading through our whole congregate living facility. It's a terrible, awful, no-win situation we have wrestled with every single day.  

But today, we are excited. We received an $88,000 check from the Mabee

Foundation out of Tulsa. This means our total raised-to-date is $533,000. Our goal is $700,000 and friends, we see it. That light. The one at the end of the tunnel.

Allison Vance Moore has selflessly given her time and expertise as our realtor and we have selected a property to purchase and are under contract, in the due diligence phase. We have raised enough to pay cash for the house.

This, friends, is why I'm crying today. Today, we got closer to a solution. We hope to be the proud owners of our second shelter home in August. More beds, more services, more safety for our community. So today, the tears are happy ones. We still have $167,000 to raise. These last dollars will go to furnish and do some minor renovations to the new house, and also do some much-needed renovations to the existing shelter. It's not a small amount of money, but it's a doable amount. Help us if you can, to help those who need us most right now. We are truly Growing Forward, and we are grateful for your support. Please make sure to select the Growing Forward campaign with your donation. Donate here.

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