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YWCA Evanston/North Shore raised $556,403 in private donations to win the grand prize of a $100,000 grant through The Allstate Foundation Purple Purse Challenge. The Purple Purse Challenge is an annual campaign that raises awareness about domestic violence and awards grants to the nonprofit service providers that raise the most money in the month of October, Domestic Violence Awareness Month.

These funds will support the YWCA’s comprehensive domestic violence services, including its 24-hour crisis line, emergency shelter, legal advocacy, counseling services, and “Bridges,” its longer-term housing program.

“Nearly 60 percent of our $5 million budget comes from private giving, so we are incredibly grateful for the support we received from donors – from Evanston, to Glencoe, to Skokie, to Niles, to Winnetka – during the Purple Purse Challenge,” said Karen Singer, CEO and President of YWCA Evanston/North Shore. “That money will support survivors in the 16 communities that comprise our service area. I’m also awed by the support of our employees, board members, swim families, and others who joined with us to make this happen. We couldn’t have done it without their enthusiasm and tenacity.”

According to The Allstate Foundation, public fundraising is a vital revenue source for domestic violence nonprofits like YWCA Evanston/North Shore. A national survey found that on a single day last year, nearly 12,000 requests from survivors of domestic violence for emergency shelter, child care, financial aid, and other services went unanswered because programs lacked funding.

Ms. Singer says, “We rely heavily on fundraising to support our domestic violence programs. What that really means is that the generosity of our donors and the commitment of The Allstate Foundation make it possible for us to change lives every day.”