Bracebridge artist Serena West is doing a fundraiser to support Dress for Success, an organization that supports women and non-binary individuals trying to enter or re-enter the workforce.
She explains they operate in Orillia and Barrie, but host pop-up shops in Muskoka often. West says they provide women who are looking for work with clothing and tutoring to help them achieve their goals. “They also help women achieve economic independence through the clothing that they offer them and also through the training,” she adds.
West says she was inspired to help them when painting a portrait of a friend. “She had gone through some difficult times and was now thriving,” she says. “I was looking for an organization for where this portait would make sense to donate.”
Most of the work she does is about women, so when she found out about Dress for Success, she realized it would be a perfect match.
That painting is currently being displayed at Dress for Success’ boutique in Barrie. West says every $5 donation through her website enters the person in for a chance to win one of two floral art prints made from snippets of the donated portrait. “You can get beautiful art for your home and you can support women” West says.
All proceeds will go to Dress for Success. That includes any money made from people who purchase a print before Nov. 6.
“I needed support at one point,” West says, adding it wasn’t from Dress for Success. However, she knows there are other women in a similar position that need support to reach their goals. “What can I do with my art to help other women” she wonders aloud.