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Wednesday 17 July 2019 9:11pm

Otago law students Lucy Aitken (left) and Annie Grimes are heading up the Te Whare Pounamu Women’s Refuge Appeals Week, which starts on Saturday.

The Women’s Refuge Appeals Week begins this Saturday, and the Otago students behind the cause are looking forward to doing their part to help women and children in need.

Now in its fifth year, the Te Whare Pounamu Dunedin Women’s Refuge Appeals Week is organised by a core group of Otago law students and, as of this year, is supported by about 50 student volunteers.

Last year the students raised about $44,000 for the Refuge, which went towards dedicating resources to help women and children in need. This year the organisers are hoping to raise $45,000.

Law students Annie Grimes and Lucy Aitken head the Appeals Week Committee. The pair became involved last year after joining up to help at the Sample Sale event.

The pair proved themselves to be very enthusiastic about the cause, so when former committee lead Maddi Ingham stepped down because she was graduating she asked the pair to take over.

"The reasons we joined are probably different to the reasons we stayed. The Refuge’s needs are great and our fundraiser has helped them."

“Last year we just signed up for the committee – we just wanted something to get involved with and to meet new people,” Lucy says.

The pair admit they did not know much about the work Women’s Refuge does before joining up for the Appeals Week committee. However, that all changed as soon as they became involved.

“The reasons we joined are probably different to the reasons we stayed. The Refuge’s needs are great and our fundraiser has helped them,” Annie says.

Despite not being able to see the impact their fundraising has on people who use the Refuge, for privacy reasons, knowing they are making a difference in people’s lives when they are in a vulnerable position is enough, Annie says.

This year the Appeals Week includes a bake sale, sample clothing sale, quiz night, charity gig and street appeal. The big ticket item is the Auction Evening, with Ray White auctioneer Grant McLean.

Annie and Lucy say there will be lots of great items up for grabs, including an alpaca rug and weekend getaway packages.

As well as the usual Appeals Week events this year gym F45 Dunedin CBD has become involved and will be donating on behalf of those signed up to the eight-week challenge. There is also a group of students running the Dunedin Half Marathon to fundraise for Women’s Refuge.

Another quirkier feature introduced this year is stickers designed by a volunteer which will be sold at the events and on social media.

To buy tickets for the Women's Refuge Appeals Week Auction Evening on the 26 July, head to the Women's Refuge website or to donate, click through to the Women's Refuge givealittle page.

Te Whare Pounamu Dunedin Women’s Refuge Appeals Week

Bake Sale
Sat 20 Jul, 9am until sold out
Dunedin Public Hospital Foyer

Street Appeal
Sat 20 Jul
Dunedin Central

Sample Sale
Sun 21 Jul, 10am to 4pm
250 George Street
Donation at the door

Quiz Night
Wed 24 Jul, 7pm
Lone Star, George St
MC: James Heath

Auction Evening
Fri 26 Jul, 6:30pm
The Savoy, Princes St
Drinks and nibbles included
Tickets $50 or $45 if you purchase 8 or more.

Charity Gig
Sat 27 Jul, 9pm
Moon Monsoon, Hot Donnas, and Esio Flop
Purchase tickets through Ticketing Universe!

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