Women's Giving Circle

What a difference a group of people can make! In just four years, our area's first Women's Giving Circle has awarded over $51,000 to local programs and organizations benefiting women and children.

In May of 2008, the Women's Giving Circle (WGC) gathered for the first time to learn how ordinary women could have extraordinary impact in their communities. Since that time, handbags that help have become a signature accessory!

For those of you new to the Women's Giving Circle and the Marshfield Area Community Foundation, let's take a moment to get acquainted...

What does a Giving Circle do?

The concept is as simple as it is powerful. A Giving Circle is formed when individuals come together and pool their dollars, decide where to give, and learn together about their community, its needs and issues, and philanthropy. So when women band together, so much can be accomplished, leading to a much greater impact. There's an old saying, "It takes one to know one." Who better to understand the strengths and challenges of women, than other women? Caring about others was ingrained in us from the beginning and we are fortunate to be able to do so in ways that suit each of us perfectly as individuals and together.

Women's Giving CircleEach member of the Women's Giving Circle makes an annual donation to join and each member has a vote on how the funds are disbursed. In the first year the WGC had nearly 50 initial members. The members were diverse and passionate group that contributed over $100,000. The WGC met as a group to review the proposals in that first September with about $3,300 available for making grants; or 45% of the entire year's fund. (50% is placed in a Women's Giving Circle Fund Endowment to establish long term funding and 5% goes to fund management expenses.) In October, in just five months, five organizations were awarded grants to help women and children in our community!

We, at the Women's Giving Circle are building a community of women philanthropists, we are maintaining a permanent endowment fund, and we are providing grants to organizations and iniatives that advance the well being of women and girls in our greater Marshfield area.

Since our founding in 2008, the Women's Giving Circle has awarded over $51,238 to 78 non-profit organizations. The endowment fund has almost $38,000. To borrow a well-worn phrase, "You Go Girl!"

Being a part of this Women's Giving Circle makes you more aware of the nitty-gritty needs that happen every day...almost like being on the front lines. The Women's Giving Circle has a depth of knowlege of the community's need that is so much greater than one's could ever be alone.

Many requests for donations to many different worthy causes show up in our mailbox throughout the year. It is a tough time for many in our community, and for many who wish to help. The Women's Giving Circle is a nice way to make your dollars go a long way to many different, excellent groups that support women and children right here in our neighborhoods.

Women's Giving CircleWe are asking you to choose to invest your philanthropic dollars...or in other words, the power of your purse...in the Women's Giving Circle, and thus in vest in our community of women and girls, today, tomorrow, and forever.

Perhaps some of you have read, or heard about the book, The Tipping Point, with its notion that small actions can manifest a magnificent change if given the right environment and support. We set forth to undertake as many thoughtful actions as possible to spread the word of our Giving Circle's effort to improve the quality of life for our fellow women and children in our communities.

This is where The Women’s Giving Circle can help. The power of giving together, toward a common goal, is a smart strategy enabling us to do more with less. The Women’s Giving Circle focuses on collective giving…on issues facing women, girls and children, including economic security, jobs, education, health and nutrition, parenting skills, substance-abuse counseling, affordable housing and day care, financial literacy, domestic violence prevention….the list goes on.

Margaret Mead once said, "Never doubt a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it's the only thing that ever has."

You may join by contacting us via phone, email or mail! Please remember how women, together, can drive change and achieve impact with the handbags that help women, girls and families in the communities through the Women's Giving Circle. We are the ripples of hope and compassion for disadvantaged women, girls and children.

Grant Application

Community, Women's Giving Circle and Seniors Grants Guidelines

July 18, 2012: Doing together what none of us could do alone!

Summer Outing

Summer Outing

(Article from the Marshfield News-Herald)

Tuesday's oppressive heat didn't stop about 40 local women from participating in the Women Helping Others golf outing.

"It's an activity we enjoy, and it supports a cause that's important," said Jane Niehaus, a retired teacher who golfed in the WHO, which raises about $5,000 annually for local nonprofit agencies and organizations that support women and children.

Sweat dripped down the golfers' faces as they finished their rounds and stashed clubs into vehicles at the Marshfield Country Club, 11426 Highway B.

"It is so hot. But we still had a great time, even though I feel like I'm melting," said Niehaus, who golfed with Jane Wagner, another retired Marshfield teacher. Although the day was overcast, the temperature reached 90 degrees on the course.

While the number of participants was down from previous outings because of the weather, money raised this year is comparable to recent years, said Judy Marty, who organizes the event with Carol Adler, both of Marshfield.

"What's nice this year is that our sponsors at the corporate level increased, and that makes a difference when raising funds," Alder said.

The money raised by the WHO event is spread across the community to organizations such as The Hannah Center, Personal Development Center and St. Vincent de Paul Food Pantry.

"We're able to reach out to many organizations that help women," Adler said. WHO partnered in 2011 with the Marshfield Community Foundation's Women's Giving Circle to leverage funds raised by both organizations.

WHO was founded in 1998 by a group of local teachers who later approached Marty, a hair stylist, and Adler, president of the Medical Center Credit Union, to assume leadership of WHO.

When the effort to drive another golf ball down the fairway was too onerous in the sticky heat, country club staff members would take over and smack the ball for participants, said Darlene Berry, a Marshfield teacher.

"It's fun because you pay them to hit the hard shots and then they donate the money back to the golf outing," Berry said. "It's really nice the way the (country club staff members) have stepped up to participate in this, too."

Hosting the annual WHO is a worthwhile endeavor, said Chip Acker, the club's owner and golf pro.

"It's good to see everyone who comes each year, and it's a good cause to help out with," Acker said.