Women mak­ing a dif­fer­ence

Group has do­nated more than $140,000 to 11 dif­fer­ent char­i­ties

Cape Breton Post - - CAPE BRETON - BY DAVID JALA david.jala@cb­post.com

They say it’s bet­ter to give than to re­ceive.

And give they shall — more than 100 lo­cal women will gather tonight in Syd­ney to de­cide which reg­is­tered char­ity will re­ceive a do­na­tion of at least $10,000.

The 6:30 p.m. meet­ing at Casino Nova Scotia marks the 12th time that the 100 Women Who Care CBRM group will hand out a sig­nif­i­cant do­na­tion to a non-profit, char­i­ta­ble or­ga­ni­za­tion within the Cape Bre­ton Re­gional Mu­nic­i­pal­ity.

Chap­ter co-founder Deana Lloy says that since it was es­tab­lished al­most three years ago, the or­ga­ni­za­tion has con­trib­uted more than $140,000 to 11 dif­fer­ent char­i­ties.

“It’s been go­ing great — our mem­bers re­ally en­joy the net­work­ing and just love the feel­ing of be­ing to­gether with like-minded women who re­ally want to give to the com­mu­nity,” said Lloy.

“And that’s their grat­i­fi­ca­tion be­cause no one in the group re­ally wants to be rec­og­nized — it’s even hard to rally them for group pic­tures be­cause they’re re­ally there out of the good­ness of their hearts.”

The group meets four times a month with each mem­ber bring­ing along a cheque made out for $100. They then lis­ten to short pre­sen­ta­tions from three dif­fer­ent char­i­ties be­fore vot­ing on which one will be awarded the do­na­tion.

The first ben­e­fi­ciary was the Syd­ney-based Ev­ery Women’s Cen­tre. In June, 2014, the cen­tre was pre­sented with a cheque for $13,600 that it put to­ward two projects — Hands Earn­ing Re­spect for Self and the Al­most Home Women’s Shel­ter.

Ac­cord­ing to Lloy, the group’s mem­ber­ship hov­ers be­tween 115 and 152 women.

“We gain some, we lose some, cir­cum­stances change, peo­ple move, they get a new job or they lose a job,” she said.

“There are women who join our group to find out which char­i­ties they want to sup­port on a reg­u­lar ba­sis — so they’ll join for a year or two and get ex­po­sure to 12 or 24 char­i­ties and then they’ll choose which ones they want to branch off with, so we’ve had quite a bit of that turnover, but with as much turnover as we have had with peo­ple leav­ing, we prob­a­bly have had twice that num­ber join us.”

With the five-fig­ure do­na­tion be­ing a game-changer for many char­i­ties, it comes as no sur­prise that the 100 Women Who Care group has not had to look far for po­ten­tial re­cip­i­ents.

To be con­sid­ered, a group must be a reg­is­tered char­ity, must be able to pro­vide tax re­ceipts to mem­bers, must promise that they won’t so­licit or data­base mem­bers for fu­ture so­lic­i­ta­tion, and they are re­quired to at­tend with an up­date af­ter three months.

Only mem­bers can nom­i­nate or­ga­ni­za­tions and, once vet­ted, the names of three char­i­ties are pulled from a hat. Then on meet­ing day, those groups will make a pre­sen­ta­tion be­fore the 100 Women Who Care mem­bers cast their votes and de­ter­mine the re­cip­i­ent.

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