Organizers of the second annual Marion County Alternative Gift Market are hoping for an even bigger turnout than the inaugural year.
This year’s event—which will benefit five local and 30 national and international projects—will be from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 10,at Marion Presbyterian Church, 610 Lawrence.
Attendees select a nonprofit cause they would like support. In return for a contribution, they receive a Christmas ornament or card to give to their gift recipient. The projects support hunger, education, child mortality, maternal health, medical services, environmental sustainability and collaboration.
More than $4,000 was raised during last year’s event, said Jackie Volbrecht, Marion resident and market coordinator.
“Our goal this year is to double attendance, which last year was 150. This should also increase contributions,” Volbrecht said. “However, it’s not totally about raising funds, it’s also to raise awareness about these charities and give our local nonprofits a chance to make person-to-person contacts.”
Ninety percent of donations go to the national and international charities, with 100 percent of donations going to the local projects represented, which are: Big Brothers Big Sisters of Marion County, Families and Communities Together, Circles of Marion County, Shepherds Shed and Feeding the Orphans, the Marion Christian Church’s mission project this year.
Sponsoring booths are Marion Presbyterian Church, Marion Christian Church, Eastmoor Methodist Church, Valley Methodist Church, Good News Fellowship, Marion Library, SteppingStones Preschool and three Girl Scout troops.
“It is so heart-warming to see all these groups come together to support their community’s charities and those around the world,” Volbrecht said. All the proceeds from the food court will go to Marion County Food Bank.
Lunch will be served from 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. with coffee and sweets available the rest of the day. Live music by local musicians will also be featured.
For more information, visit alternativegifts.org or call Volbrecht at 316-519-5146.