January 17 2012.

January 17 2012.

A night for women

For 16 years, Deb's Night Out has been an annual tradition for Valley residents.

For 16 years, Deb’s Night Out has been an annual tradition for Valley residents who want to both have fun and support an amazing cause within their own community.

This year, the night takes place Saturday, January 28 at the Eagle Ranch Resort, beginning at 6 p.m. with cocktails, while dinner takes place at 7 p.m.

Tickets are $40 and are available at Interior World, The Book Bar and the Family Resource Centre.

Each year, the Deb’s Night Out  Chinese New Year fundraiser is held to help raise awareness and money for what is now the women’s shelter, and various other domestic violence programs.

The event takes its name from its original organizer, Deb Neault, who passed away in 2010, leaving behind a legacy as a crusader for domestic violence awareness in the valley.

For many years, the goal of the night was to raise the funds necessary to build  a women’s shelter.

But long-time organizer and friend of Deb Susan Claus says that even before Deb had taken ill, the event’s organizers had begun to realize that the shelter would not only need to be built, but would also need ongoing funds to help with staffing and programs.

That’s when they decided that the Family Resource Centre (FRC) was a great fit with their goals. Today, the FRC continues to organize the event and provide staff and funds for domestic violence programs as well as the women’s shelter, which opened its doors in late 2011.

“I think the event helps bring awareness of the problem of domestic violence, which is still happening in our society, and I think it gives the community the opportunity to voice their opinion and become more aware of what’s going on,” Claus, who is a member of the FRC board said. “It’s a cause I’ve always believed in, and something I’ve always wanted to see an end to.”

Although Deb has since passed away, Claus says that there was always one thing Deb had always wanted the night to be about: fun.

“Deb was always insistent that, while this is a very sobering issue, this was a night for women to get together, have fun and support one another,” Claus said.

“I find the community to be absolutely amazing in their willingness to support this event, from businesses, to the women that attend—it’s very heartening.”