It’s amazing what a difference an hour can make.
Just ask the charities that have benefited from Victoria’s 100+ Women Who Care.
After working with a variety of non-profit organizations, Denise Grant knows from experience how long it can take – not to mention how much work – to raise even a small amount of money. So when a friend in Kingston, Ont. shared news about that city’s 100 Women Who Care group that raised $10,000 in just an hour, Grant decided to try it in her own newly adopted city of Victoria.
Unsure if they’d make it to 100 women at that first meeting, “all of a sudden we had 140!” she says, noting many of those initial women remain with the group today.
A membership-run initiative, the group gathers four times a year to learn about and vote on the suggested charities for that quarter. Members nominate the charities, three are selected and those members share in five minutes why we should vote for their charity, then the group votes. “We ask for a four-meeting or one-year commitment from all new members,” Grant says.
Once the charity is selected, the women each write a cheque for $100 (for which the charities provide a tax receipt), and that’s it – a one-hour commitment and $100 four times a year are all that’s required. Of course, once the business portion of the evening is finished, many of the women stay on to visit with friends and enjoy a little networking, Grant says.
“It’s a very diverse group and you don’t have to know anyone. For new people coming to Victoria, it’s a great way to get to know our local charities.”
Like Grant, Lori Elder has also worked extensively with Victoria’s non-profit community and knows how much the women’s efforts mean. She also likes the unique sense of community the group provides.
“It’s a group of like-minded women from all walks of life, ages and backgrounds who come together four times a year to strengthen our community,” says Elder, owner of PR4Good.
“The model of giving also really drew me in. I love how much impact you can make in just under an hour, and how simple it is to give! Non-profits really need unrestricted funds like what our members provide. It’s also inspiring to hear how your dollars have been put to work and to learn more about the various charities and non-profits doing such great work right here at home.”
And because everything is volunteer-run, and a few generous sponsors support the limited costs involved, ALL donations go to the charity, Grant notes.
Learn more about Victoria’s 100+ Women Who Care at 100womenvictoria.com.