By RASHIDA POWANKUMAR
In November, local real estate agents Connie Sheppard and Kiley Bollenberghe will be heading to Morocco and crossing the Sahara desert to raise funds for women’s shelters.
The women must raise $5,000 in order to take part in this 100-kilometre trek. But, Sheppard is hoping for a loftier amount of $10,000, because, 50,000 women and children depend on local shelters every year for safety. This funding is paramount, she said.
To help her and Bollenberghe reach their goal, a fundraiser is planned for Saturday, April 27 at the Royal Canadian Legion Branch 13, at 1577 Kingston Rd. near Warden Avenue, from 7 p.m. to midnight.
The event will include a silent auction, food, games, prizes, raffle items and donations. Some of the donation items include, Shell gift cards, Beach House gift certificates, neck massagers, and Green Dragon Restaurant gift cards.
Those attending can also enjoy music by DJ Trevor, an experienced singer and dancer who has entertained at more than 3,000 events.
Tickets are $40 in advance and $50 at the door.
Funds will be allocated equally to The Red Door Shelter and the Scarborough Women’s Centre through The Royal LePage Shelter Foundation.
According to the Shelter Foundation, on average every six days in Canada a woman is killed by her current or former partner. In Canada, 6,000 women and children stay in emergency shelters because it is not safe for them at home. Once women check into their local shelters, roughly 300 are turned away because the shelters are full.
Sheppard and Bollenberghe are Royal LePage Estate Realty sales representatives in Toronto, and want to help these women and children.
“As a real estate agent, my job is to help my clients find the perfect place to live and I cannot imagine ‘home’ being a place of fear and danger,” Sheppard said.
“I want to recognize that educating our youth about healthy relationships are key to breaking the cycle of family violence in Canada.”
For more information, please contact Connie Sheppard at 416-618-7104 or click on her fundraising page at
Or contact Kiley Bollenberghe directly at 416-908-5222 or click on her fundraising page at