An upcoming luncheon focused on celebrating overcoming adversity will feature women who embody the meaning of strength by hosting keynote speakers that include a holocaust survivor and a single mother.

Livingston County Habitat for Humanity will hold its second annual “Arise and Shine: Winning Women 2019” luncheon on Thursday, October 17th, at the 2/42 church in Brighton. Resource Development Director Ryan Skomial says it is a celebration of women who show courage, strength and dignity, noting that the base demographic that Livingston’s Habitat for Humanity serves is moms and single mothers; making the event resonate with the nonprofit.

Skomial tells WHMI the event will host keynote speaker and Holocaust Survivor, Irene Miller, who took a different journey than some. Miller was not in a death camp, but was one of the 300,000 Polish Jews who escaped across the Nazi-Soviet frontier. She says Irene’s story is “stunning” in realizing the treacherous and difficult journey she had and, even more so, surviving it and using her experience to promote tolerance and diversity.

Also speaking to guests will be Lisa Varney, who is the organization’s newest partner family to receive a new home from Habitat for Humanity. Skomial calls her one of the hardest-working women she knows. Skomial adds that Varney has worked so hard in doing her part in the process and that Habitat Livingston is glad to give her a boost, but all of the strength and drive behind it is coming from Varney.

The luncheon featuring both women is free to attend; however, guests will be asked to consider making a goodwill donation to Livingston County Habitat for Humanity in its mission to help area residents in need build a strong and solid foundation for their families' futures. Those interested in attending are asked to visit the link below or their Facebook page to reserve seats. As many as 400 people are expected to attend, so community members are asked to please RSVP as soon as possible. (DK)