Chrysalis House to begin opening one wing at a time

Giant garage sale Saturday will help raise money for 2008 start

By FAITH HUFFMAN | News-Telegram News Editor

July 20, 2007 - A huge garage sale began today and will continue Saturday at Chrysalis House to help raise money to ensure at least one wing of the facility is ready to shelter women in crisis by August 2008.

Staff Photo by Angela Pitts

(Left to right) Beau Carpenter, Tammy and Chris Pearson, Janie Carpenter and Zachary Elkins heave the colorful butterfly-shaped sign for Chrysalis House up to be secured in front of the building recently, putting them one step closer to the completion of the shelter for women.

The garage sale begins at 8 a.m. and will continue into the afternoon at least, or as long as people stop by to purchase items. In the event of rain, the sale will be moved indoors at Chrysalis House, located at the corner of Loop 301 east and Jefferson Street.

The sale features a variety of offerings, from furniture and toys to make-up and jewelry, Christmas decor, and a slew of clothes in sizes from infant up to adults. All clothing is priced at 25 cents a piece. All items have been donated, according to Tammy Pearson, Chrysalis House board president and founder. Individuals and members of the Mothers of Preschoolers group will be helping with the sale.

Pearson hopes to hold regular garage sales, either monthly or every other month, to continue raising funds to get the woman's shelter up and running.

"It's one of the easiest fundraisers to do," Pearson said. "There are so many good people in this community, but I felt people are tapped out with so many things. This way, they give and get something, too."

The project has taken longer than expected, but approval was recently given by the city for Chrysalis House to open one wing at a time so that it can begin housing women while work on another wing can continue, Pearson said.

So far, the entire interior has been gutted, and recently enough was raised to put a new roof on the building, with contractors to begin work soon. Also, all 95 windows in the facility have been replaced. While there's still much work to be done, a lot has been accomplished, Pearson noted, even if it's not readily apparent from the outside.

A new sign with a butterfly "gauge" was recently installed to monitor how much money is raised on the current phase of the project. As of Friday morning, they had about $12,000 in the account. To finish the building, about $200,000 is needed, Pearson said of the contractor's estimate.

Getting approval to open the facility one wing at a time was a blessing, according to Pearson, who noted that there is definitely a need for the facility or one like it to assist women.

"In the past seven months, we have referred 62 women to other resources. We've gotten calls from all over. We got one from Houston last week who had seen the web site and would like to start referring them to us," Pearson said.

While most of the funds raised go directly toward the building fund, a portion of it is also being used for daily operating costs such as electricity and water services.

"We're not in debt. We're just doing it a little at a time," Pearson said.We don't have a loan to have to make payments on so we're not in a hurry, but at the same time we are so we can try to help these women

Donations of labor, resources and funding are always welcome, and they will also accept donations of left-overs from estate and garage sales provided they are dropped off, and Chrysalis House representatives are notified in advance. 

For more information or to make donations, call 903-439-4844 or 903-335-0676, go online to www.chrysalishousetexas.org, e-mail tammy@chrystalishousetexas.org. Donations may also be mailed to Women Offering Women Support at WOWS, P.O. Box 237, Sulphur Springs Texas 75483, or made at City National Bank to Chrysalis House building fund.

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