A Calgary charitable organization that provides basic needs for women in poverty and their families is hoping to raise money to help a number of its resource centres remain open.

Calgary’s Women In Need Society, an organization that operates five thrift stores in the city as well as a Free Good Referral Program and four Family Resource Centres, says that due to the economy leading to an increased need of services, it has become more difficult to manage the demand.

“Our greatest challenge is that the demand for our community programs has grown significantly and is outpacing the revenue generated from our stores, limiting our ability to serve the women who so desperately need our help,” says Karen Ramchuk, executive director of WINS in a release. “While our retail stores continue to be profitable, a decrease in general retail spending and an increase in client service needs, taxes and wages has affected our organization substantially.”

As a result, the agency has had to temporarily shut down its four Family Resource Centres, in Temple, Erin Woods, Bridgeland and Glenbrook, beginning on March 23.

It says those closures could become permanent by the end of April if WINS is unable to raise $500,000 to supplement its store revenues.

According to its website, the Family Resource Centres provide barrier-free access to essential programs, services and resources to support its clients.

Officials say that Calgarians can help the fundraising effort through a number of ways, including:

  • making a cash donation on the agency’s website
  • donating gently used clothing, household goods and furniture to WINS
  • shopping at WINS stores in Calgary
  • choosing WINS to be the benefactor of community event donations

The fundraising campaign is open until April 15.