Celebrating a Place for Women

GP Womens center

On Sunday, September 21, the Gulfport Women’s Center celebrated its official designation as a 501c3 organization. Their next goal? A permanent home in a building of their own.

Last year, a conversation between Karen Gates and Diana Robbins launched a new chapter for a group of women.

“It really began with a conversation between Karen Gates and I at the [Tuesday Morning] market,” Gulfport Women’s Center’s immediate past president Diana Robbins said. “She said she really wished something like this would happen and she volunteered her backyard.”

“This” refers to a “place where women can gather and meet and nurture each other,” Robbins said as a group of women prepared for a meeting in Scout Hall. In March 2013, a group of women began meeting to do just that.

“It’s not going to be like a service organization; we don’t want to duplicate services that are already out there,” Secretary Linda Brassell said. “We do referrals. We’ll do whatever we want to do.”

A core group of eight women welcomed 26 others to the September 21 meeting, where the group celebrated the Gulfport Women’s Center designation as a 501c3 organization.

“The whole process for us took a year,” Robbins said.

Karen Gates serves as president and Cricket Hayman as vice president. However, the group needs a treasurer. To join, simply attend a meeting. To find the next meeting or subscribe to the group’s email list, visit

GulfportWomensCenter.com.

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