Peace House annual fundraiser luncheon becomes an online ‘Lunch-in’
What: Peace House Spring Lunch-In fundraiser
When: Thursday, May 7, all day
COVID-19 isolation has spurred Peace House, an anti-domestic violence nonprofit, to continue its fundraising efforts, even though the disease will prevent it from presenting its annual spring luncheon.
While the Summit County Health Department’s protocols won’t allow a large gathering on Thursday, May 7, at the Chateaux Deer Valley, the rise in the domestic violence calls to Peace House, as victims are shut in with their abusers, motivated Peace House’s staff and board to set up the first Spring Lunch-In, a virtual fundraiser, said Julie Joyce, who, along with Kate Margolis, co-chairs the nonprofit’s board.
“We still got a lot of encouragement from people who were anxious to participate in anything to host some kind of event, and, quite honestly, the funds that are raised from the luncheon are critical to our organization to help run our programs and services,” Joyce said.
The Lunch-In will start at 11:50 p.m. on Wednesday, May 6, and run through 11:50 p.m. on May 7, said Sally Tauber, director of development and marketing.
Donations can be made at peacehouse.org, and donors can donate directly to Peace House or support different people who have created their own fundraisers for Peace House, she said.
“We have set up a series of videos of people talking about why they support Peace House, and we will add and change the videos until the day of the fundraiser,” she said.
Peace House, which opened a new community campus in 2019, wants to raise $150,000, Joyce said.
“Our costs have gone up significantly, not only with the new facility and new programs we will launch over the next year, but because the pandemic has increased demand of our services as families are forced to shelter in place with abusers,” she said. “We are also having to implement a telehealth platform to enable our staff to work remotely and also provide counseling, therapy and case management remotely, which also has increased our cost.”
In its 2019 annual update Peace House reported that it provided 101 adults and children with shelter, served 232 adults and children with resources and counseling and received 4,654 domestic violence calls, which increased by more than 25 percent between December 2019 and March 2020.
“We also expect those staying in our emergency shelter will extend their stays due to the economic impact COVID-19 has on job offerings and affordable housing,” Joyce said.
To help Peace House reach the $150,000 goal, the Marriott Daughters Foundation health education nonprofit has pledged a matching grant of $50,000, according to Tauber.
“When we reach $50,000 in donations, the grant will kick in, and it will match the next $50,000,” she said.
Margolis, who has been an anti-abuse advocate for 17 years, said the domestic violence around the globe and in Wasatch and Summit counties has reached crisis mode.
“I’m getting calls every day by people who don’t know where to go or who to talk to,” she said. “The (underlying basis) of domestic violence is control, which starts with isolation. So when your entire country is in isolation and you are forced into your house and can’t go to your job it becomes a crisis level.”
Anyone who is in a domestic-violence situation can call Peace House’s 24/7 emergency hotline at 800-647-9161, Joyce said.
“The hotline is staffed with trained advocates to help connect people with support and resources so they can plan for their safety,” she said.
Margolis, who moved to Park City five years ago, said she is proud to be part of the Peace House family.
“I’ve seen many different shelters in my experience, but the way Peace House walks the walk with their clients without judging is extraordinary,” she said. “There is only support and love, and I’m grateful to be part of it.”
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