100 Women Who Care start local chapter
BY BRYCE KELLY
Mt. Pleasant News
It was the start of what many hope will become a force for good in the southeast Iowa area, and with the Blackhawk Chapter of 100 Women Who Care’s official kickoff on Thursday, a Henry County non-profit will be the first to reap the benefits.
Started in Jackson, Mich., in 2006, 100 Women Who Care originated from Karen Dunigan, who created the charity to be a simple, easy way to raise money for local, non-profits or charities. As a part of the organization, female members are asked to meet once a quarter and donate $100 each meeting, which will then be given to a charity of the group’s choice that serves Mt. Pleasant, Burlington, Fairfield, Ft. Madison or the surrounding areas.
At each meeting, each member may submit a recommendation for a local recipient, and three names are drawn from the pool of submission for consideration. The three women whose submissions are drawn are asked to give a short presentation on why they believe their charity of choice should be that quarter’s donation recipient. Once all three submissions have been presented, members vote on which charity they would like to give to.
“I have always had a passion for philanthropy and promoting positive change, which is what led me to 100 Women,” said Blackhawk Chapter president Candice Becker, regarding what prompted her to spearhead the starting of a local chapter. “This organization might mean different things to each member, but for me, it means coming together as sisters, supporting one another, changing lives and being positive role models for younger women.”
During the inaugural meeting, roughly 30 to 40 women were in attendance, and three charities were randomly chosen for consideration including Henry County Habitat for Humanity, the Mt. Pleasant Community School District Athletic Boosters and Young House Family Services’ Christamore House. Christamore House was voted in as this quarter’s charity recipient.
Located in Mt. Pleasant, Christamore House Family Treatment Center helps assist in the treatment and needs of at-risk youth and their families. Currently, Young House Family Services has facilities in Burlington, Mt. Pleasant and Fairfield.
Stephanie Stubbs, an employee of the organization who submitted Christamore House for nomination, says while all the evening’s nominations were well deserving of the monetary donation, “her heart was with Young House Family Services and Christamore House”.
“Family engagement is a huge part of what we do,” said Stubbs. “As part of that, we help parents out financially who might struggle to afford the travel to visit their kids who are at our facility and so on…We do our best to rehabilitate kids, help them be as successful as they can be, and hopefully get them to a place where they can contribute and give back in their communities. All of our youth are very special and important to us.”
As Thursday night’s event was a way to recruit new members and introduce possible members to the organization, a final tally on how much money was raised to be given to Christamore House has yet to be announced.
“It’s truly amazing what a group of people can do to help so many,” said 100 Women trustee, Jill Yoder. “We are so excited to be a part of the southeast Iowa community.”
For more information on the newly formed Blackhawk Chapter, visit www.facebook.com/100WomenWhoCareBlackhawk.