“We Want to Empower Women,” Refinery Hosts First Annual Women of Steel Gala

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Women of Steel Gala
Photo by Megan Pounder/SaultOnline

Approximately 130 women gathered at the Machine Shop on Friday evening for the first-ever Women of Steel Gala.

This gala, hosted by The Refinery, was a way to empower women while also raising money for ARCH Hospice. It included speeches by powerful women in the community, as well as showcasing physical transformations.

“We wanted to put together an event that empowers women; to show them to take chances and take risks and step outside of their comfort zone,” Refinery Co-Owner Holly Infanti told SaultOnline.

“I live a life empowering women, and I’m passionate about transformations – inside the gym, outside the gym – I like to help people to reach their full potential, and so I just wanted to help inspire the community of Sault Ste. Marie, and especially women.”

Infanti said they reached out to ARCH after they lost a close friend who stayed there for end-of-life care.

ARCH runs mostly on fundraised money in order to maintain day-to-day operations, with only nursing and care staff actually funded. Each year, their goal is to raise $800,000 in order to maintain operation.

ARCH Executive Director Christianne Monico said fundraisers such as Women of Steel are an important way to contribute towards the local hospice.

“We’re overwhelmed; we’re so grateful (for the community support),” she said.

“We have such great leaders in this community, and they really do motivate others, they inspire others, and we have them in all walks of life – education, politics, healthcare – we’re just so lucky to have such strong, confident women in this community leading our community into greater things.”

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