The Women's Giving Circle of Howard County

Who We Are, What We Do – Looking Ahead at 2019

Who We Are, What We Do – Looking Ahead at 2019

2018 was a year of impact and meaning, and it’s because of you. 

We brought people together with common interests to learn about issues impacting our community and to fund programs that benefit women and girls in Howard County.

How did we do this?

  1. By giving grants to nonprofits in Howard County that focus on our mission.
  2. By raising money from donors to support our grantmaking and having an endowment so that we will have money in perpetuity to fund programs that benefit women and girls, and
  3. By hosting events and programs to engage donors and raise money to support our grantmaking.

We’ve been part of the Howard County community for over 17 years, have raised over $1 million to support our efforts from over 1,000 donors, and have given over 100 grants to nonprofits that support women and girls in our community.

And we’ve done all this together – as a Giving Circle. It takes all of us investing our time, talent, and financial resources in various ways to ensure we are having an impact.

Here’s how we’ve had an impact together in 2018:

  1. Grew our Assets: This year we’ve raised over $55,000 from more than 125 donors to fund our efforts.
  2. Grew our Donors: This year we’ve engaged a number of new donors and It’s been exciting to see so many new faces at our events.
  3. Grew our Network: We hosted 3 networking events – two Happy Hours, at Seasons 52 and Sub-Zero and Wolf Showroom by Fretz, and a Reception at HCC in advance of the Community Foundation’s Annual Spring Party to celebrate the naming of a classroom in the new SET bldg. for the WGC in recognition of our long-standing funding partnership.
  4. Engaged our Supporters: We’ve invested in our marketing and communications and enhanced our website, grown our social media outreach on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, and updated our eNewsletter. And, we hosted a wonderful Annual Celebration in October with Keynote Speaker Rayna DuBose, who inspired and engaged 125+ attendees. We’ve done all of this because we are committed to keeping you informed and engaged in our important work.
  5. Gave out Grants: We have given almost $50,000 in grants to our nonprofit partners to empower women and girls, including:
  • JA Rising Women, our multi-year grant supporting a 13 week after-school entrepreneurship program for girls’ grades 9-12, in partnership with JA of Central MD. Over 100 young women have gone thru this incredible program. WGC has agreed to continue our relationship for another 3 year grant in part to a very generous donation of $25K from Bob and Bach Jeffrey.
  • Girl Power!, a one-day STEM expo for middle and high school girls, in partnership with the Applied Physics Lab and the Maryland Space Business Roundtable that had over 600 girls participate this year. 
  • Journey Camp for Girls, a week-long summer leadership camp for girls entering 8th and 9th grade, in partnership with Maryland Leadership Workshop. This past summer had a full group of 25 girls. This year we started a Scholarship Fund in memory of our beloved former Advisory Board member Cindy Hankin and gave over $5,000 towards scholarships this year. We had a follow-up Journey Tea in August where the girls honored five amazing women.
  • Continuing Education for Womenour women’s scholarship program, providing help to low- and moderate-income women seeking job-related courses, through our long-time partnership with Howard Community College! 
  • Emergency Response Network, our newly enhanced WGC ERN was created 15 years ago in response to the desire of many women to provide direct help to other women in need in our community. WGC donors have addressed the needs of women clients identified by our nonprofit partner agencies serving women and girls in Howard County. The past 4 months alone we’ve sent 4 requests and raised $2,850 to assist women in need. 

I hope our 2018 efforts have inspired you as much as it has all of us – it fuels us to continue working together to support women and girls in our community as we look to 2019.

Perhaps it’s needed now more than ever.

Please give to the WGC during this giving season – we can’t do it without you.

Thank you!

Barb Van Winkle
WGC Chair    

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