January 2024 Meeting

100WWCG Members joined together to begin an exciting New Year and support a local charity!

Image courtesy Jaime Lopes on Unsplash

On Thursday,  January 18th, 2024, 100 Women Who Care Guelph celebrated the New Year with a meeting which was focussed on exciting changes!

Now in our 10th year, in spite of the challenges of a pandemic and an economic downturn, our group has contributed $462,070 to local charities – an amazing success story!

But we couldn’t have done it without the wholehearted commitment of our membership. Working together, we have remained steadfast in our mission to support local charities and make a difference within our community. Our members are awesome.

Photo by Austrian National Library on Unsplash

Our Chosen Charities

On January 9th, Tannis  selected the names of three charities which had been included in our nomination draw. This allowed our nominators an opportunity to prepare presentations in advance of our meeting.

Wondering what happened at the meeting?

Sharon opened the meeting by expressing our sincere thanks to Sandra Lastovic (from SkiptheBank.ca) and the Delta Hotels Conference Centre. The support they provide is critical to the ongoing success of 100WWCG.This quarter, 20 members qualified to receive their 3 year membership pins and  25 received 5 year pins. Sharon expressed thanks to those dedicated members and recognized the new members and guests who were in the audience. To date, our donation total adds up to $462,070 and our current membership stands at 173 members, which when donation teams are factored in, yield 166 committed donations. 

Sharon introduced our new Director of Communications, Denise Kusinski. Denise will be taking over that role effective immediately, as Miriam Vince retires to pursue new directions in her life. She also noted that two of Tannis’ responsibilities will be taken over by new members of the Steering Committee – Melodie Wynne will be responsible for the writing of press releases and Liz Brant will be taking over 100WWCG’s cheque collector and tracker portfolio, with Peggy Brightwell continuing to provide follow-up of late charity payments. Crista Renner is moving forward in her role as the 100WWCG photographer and Lisa Woodcock continues to oversee vetting of nominated charities.

Members of the executive were thanked for their willingness to “pitch in” and help 100WWCG to keep moving forward and stay engaged with our membership.Sharon shared the results of our October questionnaire regarding charity nominations, and informed members that, in response, the executive committee will be instituting the following:

Charity List 

A partial list of Guelph charities has been created and has been posted to the website, under the Membership tab. For more information, follow this link! Members are encouraged to nominate charities they may know of, which are not found on this list.


We are opening up our presentation process to allow a representative of the nominated charity to make the 5 minute presentation at the quarterly meeting.  However, the nominating member is welcome to make the presentation, if they choose to. ALL nominated charities are now automatically going in the hat for each draw, so either the nominating member or the charity representative must be ready to present at each meeting. As usual, each member may have only one nomination in the hat at any given time.These new changes will be in place for our next meeting on April 9th, 2024. 
Following opening remarks, chosen charities were announced. Members listened to enthusiastic presentations from our nominators and followed up by voting.

While ballots were counted, we listened to Helen Fishburn, Executive Director of Canadian Mental Health Association Waterloo Wellington who thanked 100 Women Who Care Guelph for our October donation.

Our three chosen charities were:


Master Gardeners of Ontario (Guelph Wellington)
(Nominated by Rosemary Fernandes-Walker)

 Rosemary Fernandes-Walker presented on behalf of Master Gardeners of Ontario (Guelph Wellington). Master Gardeners of Ontario Inc. is an organization dedicated to providing horticultural information to the public. The Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs (OMAFRA) began the Master Gardener Program in 1985, but it is now an independent nonprofit organization.

Funds from a 100WWCG donation would be directed toward creation of a program for Grade 3 students, which will educate them about the opportunities of growing food gardens with their families. Specifically, our donation would be used to build kits for approximately 20 to 25 classrooms, including educational information for starting and maintaining vegetable gardens – along with a raised planter, full spectrum grow lights, soil, trays, seeds, and necessary tools. The aim of the program would be to encourage kids to learn life skills which would be beneficial in the long term.

Guelph Chamber Choir
(Nominated by Megan Hodge) 

 Megan Hodge presented on behalf of Guelph Chamber Choir (GCC).  

The Guelph Chamber Choir’s mission is “To foster community enjoyment and appreciation of choral music by a highly skilled choir, through performances, outreach, artistic collaboration, and community partnerships”.  

Funds from a 100WWCG donation would be directed toward subsidizing a youth workshop which would combine youth singers from local high school choral programs and members of GCC. This workshop, planned for late February 2024 is modelled on a very successful event which was held in 2023.


Guelph Wellington Seniors Association
(Nominated by Cyndy and Sharon McLean )

Cyndy and Sharon McLean presented on behalf of Guelph Wellington Seniors Association. The Guelph Wellington Seniors Association is one of the largest seniors organizations of its kind in Canada, providing diverse programs, activities, and services to Guelph and Wellington County. Their mandate is to enable older adults to be active and involved, make friends and age with dignity. 

Funds from 100WWCG would be directed toward creating a brand new adaptive paddle boarding program which would be developed and supervised by an occupational therapist. It would serve the needs of older individuals who face the challenges of impaired balance and mobility due to surgery or physical disability and would provide the physical, emotional and mental benefits that are associated with outdoor water activity. A 100WWCG donation would support the purchase of 2 adaptive paddle boards and a variety of additional pieces of equipment necessary to develop this pilot program.

Great News!


Photo by good good good  on Unsplash

100 Women Who Care Guelph is pleased to announce that:

Master Gardeners of Ontario (Guelph Wellington)
(Nominated by Rosemary Fernandes-Walker)  

Is the Recipient of our January 2024 Donation!

Our donation will be used to create a program for Grade 3 students which will educate them about the opportunities of growing food gardens with their families.

The program will encourage kids to learn life skills which will be beneficial in the long term and funds will be used to build kits for approximately 20 to 25 classrooms, including educational information for starting and maintaining vegetable gardens – along with a raised planter, full spectrum grow lights, soil, trays, seeds, and necessary tools. For more information, follow this link to see Melodie’s most recent press release.

How can you make your donation?

On Wednesday, February 1st, we will be taking the gathered cheques to the charity, so please make every effort to have your cheques and donations arrive before this day.

Need a reminder about using Canada Helps? check out our
Canada Helps Cheatsheet!
Follow this link to make your donation. 

If you choose this option, please make a payment of $104.00 to our chosen charity, to cover your donation plus processing fees. Choose the selected charity from those listed on the webpage.A charitable receipt will be issued for online donations, as soon as your payment has been made.

Sharon Lewis, Lisa Woodcock and Tannis Sprott make a 100WWCG cheque presentation to Helen Fishburn, Executive Director  of CMHA WW. (Photo Credit: Crista Renner)

Where do we go from here?

We are very excited to to begin a new year and 100WWCG is pleased to have the opportunity to continue its efforts to provide funding to local charities. Key outcomes?

  • We are welcoming new people to our executive committee to spread the current work load and allow for succession planning.
  • Changes have been made to our presentation process, which should encourage more members to nominate their favourite charity, without fear of having to make a presentation.  
  • Most important, we are providing a resource on our website, which will help members to learn more about the charities within our area which qualify for a 100WWCG nomination.

What has been a constant for 100WWCG is the fact that there is no shortage of enthusiasm in our membership, to support charities in need. Let’s make 2024 our most successful year of giving yet!

We look forward to seeing you at our next meeting, on Tuesday, April 9th2024, at 7:00 pm, at the Delta Hotels Conference Centre.

Sharon, Tannis, Lisa, Peggy, Dianne, Liz, Crista, Melodie and Denise
The 100 Women Team