App Women's Fund keeps on breaking records

Article Published: Jul. 29, 2010 | Modified: Sep. 7, 2011

The Appalachian Women's Fund released record setting numbers this week from the annual Women of Vision Award luncheon and fundraiser. Totals were up from last year's luncheon by 9 percent, said treasurer, Debbie Stevens.

"We raised right at $60,000.00 for area agencies focused on helping women and young girls in need. I was cautiously optimistic that we would meet last year's totals. To surpass them is a true testament to the generosity of the people in our community."

For such a young organization, the AWF has made a strong impact on the high country. Local agencies have come to rely on the money raised each summer by the independent women's fund. Funding from the AWF often means the difference between success and failure of innovative programs. The AWF awards grants in areas of poverty, hunger and health, abuse and addiction as well as higher education.

"The autonomous nature of the AWF gives us the freedom to fund programs that more restrictive sources would shy away from," said Patti Turner, AWF President.

"These are unusually difficult times. They require unusual and creative solutions. Clearly, our members and donors see that and support our mission," Turner added.

Along with the two hundred women who turned out in full force, "area merchants went above and beyond to give as much as they were able in spite of a tough economy" said Stevens.

"Our success is shared by all those sponsors, merchants and members who gave to the auction and bought at the auction," Stevens added.

Money raised will stay in the community making the local impact even greater. People are still strapped financially so the increase over the 2009 total is a pleasant surprise. The group is ready to put that money to good use.

"We follow the money awarded from beginning to end. The grant application process gives us great insight as to the need of the agency writing the request. We follow up with on-site visits and interviews with the people involved at every level. As a board, we vote on the most worthy recipients. Once money is allocated and at work for the agency, representatives present updates and testimonials at a general membership meeting" Turner explained.

If you would like more information on joining or donating , contact the AWF on-line at

Find them on Facebook or call the office at 828-264-4002.

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