One local woman had an idea. It has sparked more than $100,000 in benefits for local people in need. In 2014, Lisa Cudd heard about a Columbus chapter of a group called 100 Women Who Care who raised money for local children’s charities.
Lisa recalls some naysayers who said, “You’ll never get a hundred people in Marion who care.” Cudd and the founding members said, “Watch us. We knew there wouldn’t be a problem.”
It is the determination and compassion shown by this group, for the betterment of Marion, that is the reason the 100 Women Who Care Marion, Ohio has been recognized as one of the 2020 MarionMade! Celebrate Marion honorees, in the Programs category.
Members commit to meeting four times a year for just one hour. Each member agrees to donate $100 per meeting or form teams of two to five members to donate $100. At each meeting, local charities present to the group. Members vote on the best one. All of their funds are send to the winning charity to make a bigger impact. Together, they donate about $5,000 per quarter.
“We have proven that there are countless women in Marion Who Care enough to pool our resources and make a difference. We plan on being around for a very long time,” said Schwartz. “I enjoy the comradery and I also enjoy learning about some Marion charities I was never aware of and those charities may never have gotten the exposure if it hadn’t been for 100 Women Who Care.”
These women have provided funds that helped to build homes for those in need with Buckeye Ridge Habitat for Humanity, provide respite for cancer patients and their families at Chapel Hill House, support for those with autism, and their families, and donated free clothes and supplies through the Leapin’ Outreach Center.
“We support a wide range of charities that have given to a wide range of organizations. Everything is right here in Marion. All of the dollars stay local. It’s great to be a part of something that has touched thousands of lives here locally,” said Maggie Breeding, an advisory board member.
Another advisory council member, Pat Case, found this group appealing and rewarding. “I joined for the opportunity to give back. There are so many charities in our community that I knew nothing about. Our group has been able to make a huge difference to the receiving organizations. I’m most proud that we’ve been able to give over $112,000 locally.”
Case finds the investment of four hours a year to pay huge dividends for our community.
“Honestly, part of the appeal of the group was the time involved. I appreciate the efficiency. Our group hears the message, makes the decision and you write a check. Many times it is really hard to decide because the presenting organizations all need the money,” Case said. “With that small time commitment, we have made a huge difference for a lot of groups and in the process, and learned of the continuing need in our community.”
“Who doesn’t have a little time to give back?” Breeding asked. “What makes it different is we’re not giving to the same organization each time. We’re able to give back to many organizations within Marion every year. It’s up to the members to vote and decide.”
While the COVID-19 pandemic has moved their meetings online, the advantage is that anyone can join and listen to local charities talk about the work they do. While the presenters and advisory board members are together, other members watch on Facebook live or watch the recorded event and then vote remotely and mail in the checks. They meet four times a year on the first Monday of February, May, August, and November.
100 Women Who Care shows the power of working together for the cause of making Marion a better place to live, work, play, and learn. We are proud to recognize them as a 2020 Celebrate Marion MarionMade! honoree.