Rainforest Arts Gallery manager Stephanie Allesia at the donation table for Cowichan Women Against Violence. (Photo by Don Bodger)

Rainforest Arts Gallery manager Stephanie Allesia at the donation table for Cowichan Women Against Violence. (Photo by Don Bodger)

Rainforest Arts fundraiser supports important community cause

Cash donations and items being collected for Cowichan Women Against Violence

Rainforest Arts in downtown Chemainus is once again running a fundraising and donation campaign in support of Cowichan Women Against Violence.

“Last year, we were so impressed with the community support,” said Stephanie Allesia, manager of the gallery at 9871 Willow St. “It was kind of a no-brainer to run the campaign again.

“It was something we wanted to do as the Rainforest committee, nice to support a local organization.”

CWAV has revamped its approach to fundraising campaigns this year, focusing on the women but also children, and asked for only certain items to be collected at the Rainforest Gallery. These include: new waterproof gloves (both adult women’s and children’s sizes); new tarps; new sleeping bags; gift cards to grocery stores, dollar stores or department stores such as Walmart, Superstore and London Drugs; and cash donations.

“Last year we did $500 cash and did six giant boxes,” Allesia said of the donations. “It would be nice to match the cash donations.”

People making donations of either cash or an item receive one entry into a prize draw. Diana Durrand has donated a framed Paper Doll Portrait print and Peggy Grigor a crystallized pottery vase as prizes.

Both pieces are on display on the donation table at the gallery. A representative of the CWAV will be on hand to make the prize draws at the end of the campaign on Dec. 19.

The cause is an increasingly important one and Rainforest Arts is pleased to offer its assistance with the backing of the community.

“There was a lot of talk about the domestic violence increase,” said Allesia.

“It seems Christmas is the time of year everyone, including us, thinks more giving and community-minded. It’s always the perfect time of year for that. The town is so great, so many local businesses do that – thinking about supporting local organizations and causes.”

Rainforest Arts is part of the Chemainus Valley Cultural Arts Society. It features the works of painters, sculptors, jewellers, fabric artists, potters and photographers – basically every visual and three-dimensional art genre.

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Donation box with festive wrap for items collected for Cowichan Women Against Violence is displayed by Rainforest Arts Gallery manager Stephanie Allesia. Cash donations are also being accepted. (Photo by Don Bodger)

Donation box with festive wrap for items collected for Cowichan Women Against Violence is displayed by Rainforest Arts Gallery manager Stephanie Allesia. Cash donations are also being accepted. (Photo by Don Bodger)