Recently, there was a story about a little-known group named Women Helping Women. The Firebaugh-based group held a fundraiser at the Blue Flame Diner, a local eatery, on Nov. 5.

A large group attended, so all tickets for the event sold out (roughly 60 seats were available).

At this event, the goal was to support Victoria Fuentes, a Firebaugh woman who has endured many challenges in her lifetime.

The group wanted to build her up and give her more confidence in knowing that there are locals who care to see her overcome her challenges.

Blue Flame owners, Crystal and Jorge Cardenes, prepared brunch for the ladies. Another group member, Kristen Gonzalez, contributed a charcuterie board with bagels, pastries, and fresh fruit.

Even though the Fuentes family and community members also showed their support by putting together baked goods and gift baskets to raffle these items, others still came together to provide door prizes.

Mayra Rodriguez was the first recipient around this time of year in 2022 from the Women Helping Women non-profit organization, and she contributed a beautiful wreath, which she is known for making, that was offered as a door prize. 

One of the event organizers recounts that Fuentes shared her story with attendees concerning her son Josiah, whom she lost to cancer 13 years ago, as well as losing her grandpa during COVID and her husband seven months later due to complications of a long illness. Fuentes is currently raising three boys alone, two of whom are autistic.

The raised funds, totaling over $1,500, were presented to Fuentes in the end. The proceeds were raised that day from the monetary donation and money raised from the raffle.

Fuentes, a woman of few words, was pleased with everything and extremely grateful to have been chosen.

If you are aware of any woman in Firebaugh who is in need because of an overwhelming struggle, please feel free to contact the organization through their Facebook page or on Instagram, called Women Helping Women, for more information on how to assist the individual or family in need.

Samantha Rangel