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Purses power helps empower women
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WomenSource was created to bring women together to connect with other women.

And to kick off their fundraising efforts, the organization’s members will be putting on the Power of the Purse event next week, especially for women.

"The Junior League was looking to do a big project of some sort ... Junior League is actually to take the lead in getting this organization off the ground," said Dixie Truelove, former Junior League of Gainesville-Hall County president and WomenSource board chair. "LeTrell Simpson is going to be giving a lot of information that evening about WomenSource and to answer any questions and what we are hoping to accomplish through this new organization."

WomenSource, a effort by three local nonprofits, will kick off their fundraising efforts with Power of the Purse. The event features food, wine and fashion.

"United Way’s role in WomenSource is that we are one of the three sponsoring organizations," said Jackie Wallace, president and chief professional officer of United Way of Hall County. "So we, along with the Junior League (of Gainesville-Hall County) and the North Georgia Community Foundation, invested the initial start-up funds to help the organization to get up and get going. We provided obviously some support, each organization had three board members join the board of WomenSource."

WomenSource was created to help connect women in Northeast Georgia to professional sources for practical help with counseling, facilitating peer support groups and making referrals.

"Our goal is to create personal and professional success for all women in whatever way that might mean," Wallace said. "Yes, it would be some opportunity to connect professional women to maybe women who need maybe some mentoring or guidance, but way more than that."

For those who attend Power of the Purse, they will have the opportunity to become charter members of the nonprofit for $35.

The event will feature a fashion show with clothing from local fashion retailers including Belk, Elisabeth’s, Saul’s, Christopher’s and Carol's Closet among others.

"We’ve asked local women in the community, some that you will know that are considered leaders in our community as well as Junior League girls, all age ranges are going to (model)," Truelove said. "Each model will have a couple different outfits. It will be a chance for the merchants to show what they have for the new season."

Local singer Michelle Alexander will perform patriotic music in remembrance of the attacks on 9/11. Heavy hors d’oeuvres will be served as local musician Allen Nivens provides entertainment. A wine bar also will be available and Lydia Sartain will be the emcee for the evening.

Funds raised at Power of the Purse will allow WomenSource to provide educational programs such as clinics on women’s rights, brown bag lunches on women’s physical, financial and emotional health and other issues facing local women today.