Seaside Magazine May 2015 Issue

Page 14

can we talk Publisher Sue Hodgson Talks with Co-founders of 100 Women Who Care Saanich Peninsula, Debra Bartlett and Shelley Mann 100 Women Who Care was started in November of 2006 by Karen Dunigan of Jackson, Michigan as a simple way to raise money efficiently and quickly for local charities. At their first one-hour meeting, the group of over 100 women each wrote a cheque for $100 directly to The Center For Family Health, their local charity, raising $12,800 to buy 300 new baby cribs. In total there are now 47 chapters in the US and 7 in Canada with more on the rise. What encouraged you both to move forward to form the Saanich Peninsula chapter? We attended the Victoria chapter and in the first meeting with them we saw 240 very enthusiastic women give $24,000 to a local charity in one hour! It was a very powerful experience and as they were already at 240 women and growing we thought that we could branch out locally and make a difference. The idea is to find 100 women (or more) to commit $100 each to a local registered charity four times a year. The women are asked to prepare a nomination for a charity. Three names are picked from a hat and the nominators are given five minutes to make their case. The entire group votes and the winner receives a cheque. The whole process is incredibly fast and efficient. What has been your experience so far when attending the Victoria chapter? It was the best meeting I have ever been to, business or

otherwise. It started exactly at 7.00 and finished exactly at 8.00 and in that time we interacted with other women and gave $24,000 to a local charity! Amazingly efficient and worthwhile! And it was ALL volunteer so none of the donated money went to admin costs. The grouping of these funds makes for a big impact to a charity organization. With your first meeting coming up on May 6, at Glenn Meadows Golf and Country Club, what type of charities have been nominated? We have a wide range of charities from local service organizations, foundations, services impacting children and health related charities. With charity organizations on the rise, some are criticized about where all the funds get directed. Does any of the money for 100 Women go towards administration costs? No, all the money raised goes directly to the charities. As a matter of fact the cheques are all made out directly in the name of the charity that is chosen the night of the meeting and each member receives a tax receipt from that charity. We have had some start-up costs which we have paid for out of pocket and then our sponsors have paid us back. The generosity and support has been amazing! How is an organization eligible for consideration? An organization must be based in and serve the Saanich Peninsula or Victoria area and it must be a registered, not-for-profit or charitable organization able to provide tax receipts for donations. We are not considering nominations to national or international charities, programs, or organizations

Debra Bartlett, Left, and Shelley Mann photo by