Beautifully decorated Christmas trees, gift baskets, lots of lights and ornaments adorned the London Bridge Resort Convention Center at the 6th Annual O’Christmas Tree Raffle and Festival Sunday afternoon. Guests picked out trees they could take home if their raffle ticket was the winner.
The event, hosted by the nonprofit organization Women With Willpower, raised money for local women in need of financial help. Tickets sold for a dinner and a chance to win a fully decorated Christmas tree donated by local businesses.
Christine Hodge, who came to support the organization for the first time, says she was pleased with the experience.
“I think this is a wonderful event that involves the community,” said Hodge. “Everything is just so pretty and elegant.”
Some of the themed Christmas trees being raffled off included “Havasu Eats Tree,” featuring miniature food ornaments with an assortment of restaurant gift certificates from around Havasu, donated by Sherri Ashford, Paula Baldwin and Roberta Simpkins.
Another tree was themed “Spa Day” and featured several products including face masks, face and body lotions and certificates for any spa service, donated by Stephanie Lane.
If guests missed out on winning a tree, 27 gift baskets also donated by local businesses and organizations, were up for grabs if you had the winning raffle ticket.
Beautifully designed cupcakes, created by 2014 Miss Havasu Senior Betty Johnson, were also part of the experience.
One by one, courageous women told their stories, and describe how they had benefited from Women With Willpower.
“Six years ago when Connie Alexander talked to me about an organization that would help ladies of Havasu who had no possibility of getting help from any other agency, I said, ‘count me in.’ I stand in awe today. Women With Willpower have helped so many women throughout the years. I’m proud I said, ‘count me in,” said “Jackie,” a recipient from assistance from Women With Willpower.
Women With Willpower involves a group of women working alongside partnerships with the local community that extends a “help up” for women who find themselves in need of financial help. The funds are then used to pay off a bill, debt, or other vendor directly for the client.
“Back in 1983 when a woman was working two jobs after her husband lost his job and she was forced to support her 6-year-old son and keep her house,” said Alexander.
“Then her husband started an affair. The woman’s boss decided to help her out and put down money for a new apartment and first four months rent and encouraged her to leave her husband. In 2001, she moved to Lake Havasu City with a man who fell in love with her and her son. And the lady is me who stands before you today,” explained Alexander.
Since then, Alexander and board members and volunteers have worked to help other women in need of assistance and has given out $30,000 in assistance grants to help the women of Havasu.
“I just want to thank the London Bridge Resort and all their amazing staff for all the work they did to help us put this event on and everyone who was involved,” said Alexander, president of Women with Willpower.
Some event sponsors included Frontier Communications, Adspay, Kimberly Michael Salon, Havacars and more. All proceeds from the event benefit the Women With Willpower organization.
For more information on Women With Willpower, visit www.womenwithwillpower.org.
Photo Gallery By Jillian Danielson:
Photo Gallery by Rick Powell: