Celebrating $100,000 in just 3 years

Motivated by the realization of the needs in Ozaukee County, 100+ Women Who Care hit six-figure fundraising milestone in short order

MEMBERS OF 100+ Women Who Care, Ozaukee Chapter, had something special to celebrate when they met Monday at the Patio in Port Washington. After their first quarter donation, they topped the $100,000 mark in gifts to nonprofit groups serving county residents. The group includes (front row, from left) leadership committee members Mary Karnitz, Tracy Modjeski, Maureen Wiskirchen, Sue Brumm, Jill Klitz — who nominated the Saukville Food Pantry as the recipient of this quarter’s collection — and Cheryl Ross. Photo by Sam Arendt
Ozaukee Press staff

When the members of 100+ Women Who Care, Ozaukee County Chapter, met Monday night, their agenda included one item not typically included — a celebration.

In the three years since it was founded, the group has raised more than $100,000 — $100,548, to be exact — to donate to charities that serve county residents.

“One hundred thousand dollars is a big damn deal,” said Tracy Modjeski, a member of the 100+ Women leadership group. 

“I think it’s hard not to get emotional when you look at the numbers. I get chills.”

“I think the next $100,000 will come even more quickly,” fellow leadership group member Sue Brumm said. “We’re still growing.”

The idea behind 100+ Women Who Care is simple. Gather a group of women who are committed to donating $100 every three months to help their community.

By bundling their individual donations, the women have a chance to make a large contribution that has an impact.

“It’s a significant shot in the arm for a charity,” Brumm said. 

The group’s first donation in 2015 was $7,100 to Advocates of Ozaukee, which used it to convert an old pig barn into a counseling center. 

And Lake Shore Regional Child Advocacy Center, which received $7,900 last year, bought equipment to record interviews its staff conducts with child victims so the youngsters don’t have to repeat their accounts.

At every meeting, members nominate a nonprofit organization that serves Ozaukee County residents to receive that quarter’s funds. The nominations are placed in a jar, and three are selected for consideration.

Whoever nominated the nonprofit group pleads their case to the membership, which votes to determine who gets the funds.

At the following quarterly meeting, a representative of the winning charity tells the women how their donation has made a difference.

“We want to see something tangible,” leadership group member Cheryl Ross said.

The presentations are educational, the women agreed.

“It really does teach you about the community at large,” Ross said. “It lets you know what resources we have available in Ozaukee County, and it helps people realize there’s a need for these services.”

Brumm added, “I think there’s a perception that there is no need here. This is Ozaukee County.

“But anybody who thinks Ozaukee County doesn’t have a need isn’t seeing the big picture.”

The women all make out their checks to the individual non-profit organizations, not to 100+ Women Who Care.

 “We’re not in charge; we’re just the conduit for it to happen,” Modjeski said.

The group now counts 144 women as members — some as individuals and others as members of groups that commit a total of $100 a quarter.

Not everyone can attend every meeting, so the donation varies each quarter.

The group has grown primarily by word of mouth.

“I think a lot of members tell their friends and neighbors,” Brumm said. “Every meeting, I meet new people.”

The meetings rotate between three venues — the Patio in Port Washington, Water Street Brewery in Grafton and Highland House in Mequon — giving the group visibility throughout the county. 

So far, the group has not donated twice to the same organization.

“There are so many unique organizations to choose from,” Modjeski said. 

Funds have gone to Advocates of Ozaukee, Starting Point, Portal Inc., Family Promise, United Way of Northern Ozaukee, Big Brothers Big Sisters, Family Sharing, Cope Services, Adult Literacy Center, St. Vincent de Paul, Lake Shore Regional Child Advocacy Center, Helping Hands Healing Hooves and, selected Monday, the Saukville Food Pantry.

For more information, visit www.100womenozaukee.org or email 100women.ozaukeechapter@gmail.com.


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Ozaukee Press

Wisconsin’s largest paid circulation community weekly newspaper. Serving Port Washington, Saukville, Grafton, Fredonia, Belgium, as well as Ozaukee County government. Locally owned and printed in Port Washington, Wisconsin.

125 E. Main St.
Port Washington, WI 53074
(262) 284-3494


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