Bridals by Al-Mor donates dresses to local charity and African initiative

Some of the dresses being donated in the local area and worldwide by Bridals by Al-Mor. Photo courtesy of Miranda Carruthers of Bridals by Al-Mor

Kelsey Smith
Nation Valley News

WINCHESTER — What do you do with 60 wedding dresses that have not been sold but you to get rid of? For Bridals by Al-Mor the answer was simple … donate them!

Miranda Carruthers — daughter of owner Kim Carruthers — took to Facebook last week to ask the public their opinions on what to do with a supply of excess wedding gowns. The business had a sale last Sunday but still had overstock to unload at the end of the day.

The post received many comments and shares throughout the community and the response was unanimous: They needed to be donated to charities.

Seen in above photo: Bridals by Al-Mor takes to Facebook for suggestions on how to relocate their overstocked inventory. The public responded!

Many organizations were suggested, most of which were local. But the rest will travel as far as Africa!

Seen in above photo: Bridals by Al-Mor announced the receiving charities of choice via Facebook yesterday.

Local charities and businesses receiving the dresses include the House of Lazarus, Angel Gowns of Cornwall and Area, and the Upper Canada Playhouse.

However, Miranda Carruthers had a charitable organization that was near and dear to her heart — and knew she just had to help them out as well. Carruthers was fortunate enough to travel to Kenya, Africa, with college classmates and her professor last year. While there, she visited a shelter for women and children called the Stichting Jua Rescue Centre.

Seen in above photo: Miranda Carruthers poses with a young African girl of the Stichting Jua Rescue Centre in Watamu, Kenya. Photo courtesy of Miranda Carruthers

The rescue centre is for women and children who are no longer able to live at home. They may have come from homes where abuse, beatings, forced marriages and or pregnancies from sexual assault have occurred.

According to their website, the centre offers a safe place to live and “guarantee a safe environment, mediation, medical care, and support in fighting their trauma.”

The organization was founded in the Netherlands in 2010, and a year later Nelleke Hols — the founder and initiator of the Kenyan location — opened her own site in Watamu, Kenya.

The founder is also quoted on the website saying, “Jua means sunshine in Swahili. To me it means ‘warm heart’ and ‘bringing sunshine into a child’s life.’”

Carruthers said that the residents of the shelter won’t be selling the donated items as dresses. Instead, they will take each gown apart piece-by-piece and reuse the beading and all the materials to create one-of-a-kind shoes, blankets, and accessories of all kinds. Those will be sold instead to raise money for their charity.

The 10 dresses that the shelter will receive are set to leave Canada this December.

Carruthers’s professor still visits the centre at least two times per year, having just returned two weeks ago. The educator plans to return this December with the dresses in hand.

Bridals by Al-Mor is also asking the public to pass on more suggestions for charities or people in need. They still have 13 dresses remaining to donate.

Feel free to call them at 613-774-3370 or message them on their Facebook page @bridalswinchester with any ideas.

 


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