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Basketeers start second-annual campaign to help women get 'fresh start'

The Collingwood chapter of the Basketeers is looking for donations of laundry baskets packed with new household items
From left: Original Collingwood Basketeers members Eva Landreth and Tammy Ridout, Brigitte Kopas and Rachel Gruber brought in a basket packed by their neighbourhood in the Collingwoodlands, Jane Landreth (original Collingwood Basketeers member), and My Friend's House executive director Allison Fitzgerald during last year's Basketeers collection and donation event. Erika Engel/CollingwoodToday

For the second year, a local group of volunteers is looking for community support for a campaign to help women in shelters get a fresh start in life.

The local chapter of the Basketeers is again collecting laundry baskets or totes packed with new household items. The complete baskets are meant to be given to a woman leaving the women’s shelter “to a new beginning.”

The Basketeers started in Toronto about 16 years ago and since then local chapters have sprung up in communities around Ontario, Newfoundland, Quebec, and Georgia. This year will be the second Basketeers mission in Collingwood and the 20th anniversary of the organization.

Baskets will be donated to My Friend’s House, Grey Bruce Women’s Shelter, and shelters in Orillia and Kincardine. Last year the group collected 80 baskets from the community from both individuals and groups who got together to pack a basket.
“Our goal is to receive the same amount of baskets as last year,” said Jane Landreth, one of the local chapter organizers. “All of the shelters were thrilled to receive the baskets.”

The drop-off date for this year is Saturday, Nov. 16 at the Blue Mountain Golf and Country Club from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Anyone interested in donating a basket can register online here. The website includes suggestions on what to include in your basket. Items should be packed in a large laundry basket or storage container. The baskets can have a theme, and the total value should be around $150 to $200. The Basketeers suggest filling the basket with anything you think a woman leaving a shelter might need. Include a personal note of encouragement if you like, then wrap the basket up. They also ask that you attach an itemized list of the basket contents to make matching the basket up with a woman a little easier.

You’ll find local chapter updates on Facebook here.

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Erika Engel

About the Author: Erika Engel

Erika regularly covers all things news in Collingwood as a reporter and editor. She has 15 years of experience as a local journalist
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