100 WOMEN Who Care of the Greater Owosso Area founders, from left: Sue Ludington, Lisa Hood, Becky Hartnagle and Cindy Schluckbeier are shown here right after setting up for a meeting.
The local group, 100 Women Who Care, was started in January 2016 by Cindy Schluckbier, Sue Ludington, Lisa Hood and Becky Hartnagle. These women were interested in supporting the community, the Greater Owosso Area, by contributing to local charities together, as a unit, to increase the impact.
The concept is simple. Members come to a one-hour meeting and agree to write a $100 check at the end to be given to a needy charity. Members can show up as they are and walk out in less than an hour. At the start of the meeting members get a name tag with a ballot attached to the back. If a member has a worthy 501©3 charity they want donations for, they write it on the ballot and put it in the drawing bowl. Three names are drawn at each meeting and each person gives a five-minute presentation on their charity, followed by five minutes of questions and answers from the group. Members then vote on which charity they want to donate to and then checks are written by all members to that charity. The checks are collected and handed over directly to the charity.
Criteria for the charities include that they must be a 501©3 and be local. One hundred percent of the money collected goes to the charity. There are no expenses deducted because everything is donated by the four founding members.
The charity group started with three meetings per year but has decided to only hold two meetings a year from now on because of the amount of people out of town during the January meetings. Their next meeting will be held at the Lebowsky Center for Performing Arts on Monday, April 17 at 6:30 p.m. New members are always welcome. Please visit our website owossowomencare.com for more information.
As the group heads into its eighth year, their numbers have grown. At the first meeting in February 2016, they had 151 members and now they have 210 members. This group has donated $430,000 to local charities.
New members are asked to agree to stay in the group for at least a year and if they feel that they need to withdraw from the group, then they should do so before the next meeting.
Co-founder Becky Hartnagle said, “We do not want to have members make huge financial and time commitments. We really appreciate our members and their contributions. We couldn’t raise all the money for charities without them.”
The 100 Women Who Care groups are all over. There are groups worldwide (women, men and teens). A branch of the 100 Women Who Care started from a few former members that decided they wanted to do the same concept in their hometown. This group is 100 Women Who Care – Greater Durand Area. They started in September 2016 and have raised $132,000 to date.
These charities have been donated to since 2016: Child Advocacy Center Baby Pantry, Welcome Home Veterans, Owosso Public Schools OPS Backpack Program, Shiawassee HOPE LiNC Food Pantry, Respite Volunteers of Shiawassee County, Hospice House, Safe Center, Shiawassee Free Medical Clinic, Shiawassee Humane Society, Shiawassee Goodfellows, Homeless Angels, The Arc of Mid-Michigan, Shiawassee HOPE, Lebowsky Center for Performing Arts, Shiawassee Family YMCA, Pregnancy Resource Center, Shiawassee Community Foundation and Laingsburg Clothesline.
When asked what the most rewarding thing about founding the 100 Women Who Care group, Lisa Hood said, “Even though we visited other 100 Women Who Care Groups before our first official meeting, we were unprepared for the generosity shown by our membership. We can’t pinpoint one specific donation or winning non-profit. To date, we have had 18 winning non-profits and each client they serve is also a winner.”
Becky Hartnagle said, “I have learned so much about the needs of our community through these meetings. My favorite part of every meeting is listening to our members pitch their favorite charity.Their passions are heartwarming and their enthusiasm is contagious. One of the extraordinary benefits of our group is the knowledge we gain about incredible organizations which are improving the lives of our neighbors. These presentations make a huge impact!”
Anyone interested in becoming a member or getting more information may call (989) 274-5152, email@example.com or visit the web at owossowomencare.com.