GWC 2109 Grant Award Recipients! March 2019

Greenwood Women Care (GWC) recently awarded grants totaling $47,625 in our first annual granting cycle! Eight local nonprofits serving residents of Greenwood County received awards ranging from $2500 to $10,000.

Pictured are: (front row) Deborah Parks, Laura Stowe, Summer Booker, GWC Steering Committee members; Alison Fletcher, Mary Woodiwiss, Laura Bachinski, GWC Steering and Grants Committee members; Kathy Emily, Marilyn Murphy, Patricia Hartung, and Anne Craig, GWC Grants Committee members; (back row) Joanne Burkett, Greenwood Community Improvement Foundation-WLC; Lisa Lane, Project Hope Foundation; Kathryn Butler (Greenwood School District 50) and Claire Wieters, Beyond Abuse; Teresa Goodman, Community Initiatives; Alice Hodges, Meg’s House; Steve Coleman, MODELS Academy; Stephen Gilbert, Greenwood Community Theatre. (Not pictured: Connie Maxwell Children’s Home recipients)

GWC Grants were awarded to:

Beyond Abuse ~ mentoring program for 5th grade girls (through 6th grade)

Community Initiatives ~ Safe Haven after school and summer programs

Meg’s House ~ household supplies for 12 clients in Operation Impact program

Greenwood Community Improvement Foundation ~ Leadership Scholars program for middle & high school girls

Project Hope Foundation ~ training and supervision of ABA therapists serving children with autism

MODELS Academy ~ program and conference costs for MODELS Academy for African-American males, grades 5-12

Greenwood Community Theatre ~ production costs, including outreach performances & The Penguin Project

Connie Maxwell Children’s Home ~ furnishings for Family Care Program for single mothers and children

Congratulations to our 2019 GWC Grants recipients! We are grateful for all your excellent efforts to improve the quality of our community life in Greenwood County!

GWC Quarterly Meeting, March 26, 2019, at Greenwood Genetic Center

GWC members and guests met Tuesday, March 26 at the Greenwood Genetic Center to celebrate our first Annual Meeting.

Champagne, punch, appetizers, strawberry parfaits, and cookies representing our grant awards (specially crafted by Connie Carstens) were enjoyed by all!

Angelle LaBorde, Chair of the Programs & Education Committee, introduced Dawn Puderbaugh Hodges who gave an informative talk about the history and overview of the programs at the Greenwood Genetic Center, our hosting venue. Anne Hancock, Chair of the Governance & Finance Committee, presented the slate of GWC Officers and Steering Committee which was approved by the Members present. They are: Laura Bachinski and Mary Woodiwiss, Co-Chairs; Laura Stowe, Secretary; Lou Noel, Treasurer; Summer Booker, Kelly Buckshorn, Alison Fletcher, Anne Hancock, Angelle LaBorde, Megha Lal, Deborah Parks, Anna Welborn, and Trentsie Williams.

Mary Woodiwiss reviewed highlights of our first year, including the key activities of each committee. Mary noted our 2019 GWC Grant recipients, with awards totaling $47,625 (as previously announced to the Membership) We were excited to learn that the financial health of GWC going into our second year is extremely strong with balances as follows: Granting Fund $42,536, Endowment Fund 23,516, and Administration Budget $6,498.

Looking towards the future, Laura Bachinski discussed ways to support GWC through Gift Memberships as well as gifts made in memory or honor of an individual. She also spoke of the importance of strengthening the framework of GWC through our Standing Committees. Laura briefly discussed our annual calendar, social events, and made us aware that we could look forward to our November Meeting when we will hear from our grant recipients.

GWC Presentation at Together SC Summit, March 12, 2019

Trentsie Williams and Mary Woodiwiss, GWC Steering Committee Members, presented a session on Greenwood Women Care at the Together SC Annual Summit on Tuesday, March 12th. Their presentation was entitled “Learn.Give.Grow: Building Community Through Collective Grantmaking”.

Together SC is a statewide organization of an array of nonprofits, including direct service providers and funders. About 50 people attended the breakout session, including Mamie Nicholson, GWC Charter Member. We are glad for every opportunity to share the word about GWC!

GWC Quarterly Meeting, February 25, 2019, at The Museum

Greenwood Women Care enjoyed a record turnout for our first Quarterly Meeting of 2019 with more than 90 Members attending our inaugural granting assembly.  The Museum provided an excellent venue for our evening!

Our meeting began with an extended social time downstairs at The Museum where we were treated to delicious appetizers and chocolates along with numerous beverage options, arranged by the Social Committee. We moved to the upper gallery for the program, with content chosen by the Programs and Education Committee. Karen Jennings, Executive Director of The Museum, graciously welcomed us and directed our attention to the various featured exhibits. Trentsie Williams, Steering Committee member, opened the meeting by highlighting numerous GWC accomplishments. Pattie Fender, Communications Committee member, was acknowledged for her initiation of the GWC Facebook page. Members were encouraged to “like” and “share” our new Facebook page.

After committee presentations, all completed a brief form indicating their committee interests. Members were encouraged to join a committee if time and interest allow; however, we were also given the opportunity to decline committee affiliations.

Laura Bachinski, of the Grants Committee, reviewed voting procedures for our very first GWC Grant Awards and granting questions were entertained.  Laura also reminded us of our upcoming Annual Meeting to be held on Tuesday, March 26th, 5:30-7:00 at the Greenwood Genetic Center.

Sincere thanks are extended to The Museum, Simon Says Grow for the lovely table flowers, and those GWC Members who presented along with those who worked behind the scenes to make our meeting a success.

GWC New Members’ Welcome, February 19, 2019

GWC is delighted to have 26 new 2019 Members, as of February 15th! Several on the Steering and Membership Committees – Mary Woodiwiss, Laura Stowe, Laura Bachinski, and Summer Booker – hosted an informal gathering at the home of Mary Woodiwiss on Tuesday, February 19th. All enjoyed light fare and drinks, warm and lively camaraderie, and a brief overview of GWC’s first year and aims for the year ahead. There was time for questions, discussion, and continued conversation. The evening was well attended and was a great way for those new to GWC to meet a smaller cohort before our first Quarterly Meeting on February 25th.

GWC’s “Shake Off the Winter Blues”, January 8, 2019, at Wild Hare Productions

GWC members and guests gathered on Tuesday, January 8th to enjoy our “Shake Off the Winter Blues” winter social at Wild Hare Productions, located in Hampton Place Shopping Center. Numerous members contributed savory appetizers and/or sweets which resulted in overflowing tables of delicious treats and beverages.

Bess Park opened the entertainment portion of the evening with a quick introduction to her Wild Hare Productions which consists of both nonprofit dance and theatre. Scenes from Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night were performed by six of Wild Hare’s Youth Shakespeare cast members, along with a quick synopsis by Bess between the scenes. Mary Woodiwiss then welcomed our members and guests, extending our GWC invitation for guests to attend all of our regular meetings and to consider joining GWC in 2019. Mary also emphasized our strong pool of 16 grant applicants for our first GWC Grant awards to be made in February. Nearly all of our 2018 members have renewed their memberships for 2019 and we have also welcomed 14 new members so far this year.

Thank you to all members and guests, especially to those who contributed our evening’s refreshments. Many thanks to Bess Park for opening up the theatre portion of her Wild Hare Production to us and providing us with the delightful scenes from Twelfth Night.  We look forward to seeing all members of GWC at our very important February 25th  Quarterly Meeting at The Museum.

GWC 4th Quarterly Meeting, November 13, 2018, at St. Mark UMC

The 4th Quarterly Meeting of Greenwood Women Care was held on Tuesday, November 13, at the Rivers Street extension of St. Mark Methodist Church. Fall desserts and beverages were arranged by the Social Committee. Lisa Smith, a member of the Programs & Education Committee, welcomed everyone and introduced our program, “Homelessness and Hunger in Our Hometown”, featuring Ken Kelly, Operations Officer and past Executive Director, and Anthony Price, Executive Director of Greenwood Pathway House, and Wendi Andrews, Executive Director of the Food Bank of Greenwood County.

Anne Craig, Alison Fletcher, and Angelle LaBorde presented reports for the Grants Review & Awards and Governance & Finance Committees. Boo Ramage spoke about the purpose of the GWC Endowment, a fund created with a portion of each membership contribution and signifying a commitment to the future of GWC.

Summer Booker of the Membership Committee reported that 28 of our 104 Charter Member have already renewed and 8 new members have joined GWC for 2019.

This gathering was attended by 50 members and 10 guests.

GWC Grant Writing Workshop, October 15, 2018, “Grant Writing 101”

GWC’s Grants Review & Awards Committee held a workshop entitled “Grant Writing 101” that was open to the community and welcomed 31 attendees. The workshop was developed by GWC Members Wendi Andrews, Sandra McMullen, and Kathy Emily, and included a panel of four local funders: Selynto Anderson (Self Regional Hospital Foundation), Marisel Losa, (United Way), Mamie Nicholson (Self Family Foundation) and Mary Woodiwiss (Greenwood County Community Foundation). Attendees learned about principles and practical steps for writing effective grant proposals to assist them in seeking funding through GWC grants or other sources.

GWC Fall Social, “A Farm Drop-In”, October 1, 2018

On Monday, October 1, GWC enjoyed a very special Fall Social, “A Farm Drop-In”. About 50 GWC Members and 15 guests gathered in the early autumn twilight at the farm of GWC Member, Catherine DiBenedetto. The evening was an opportunity to mingle and get to know each other in a relaxed and beautiful setting. Attendees enjoyed a delicious assortment of appetizers and desserts brought to the gathering by Members. There was no agenda or program, just a couple of lovely hours of good food and drink, interesting conversation, and the company of new and longtime friends.


GWC 3rd Quarterly Meeting, August 28, 2018 at Church of the Resurrection

Greenwood Women Care conducted our 3rd Quarterly Meeting on Tuesday, August 28th, at the Church of the Resurrection.  Approximately 60 members and guests enjoyed a reception along with an inspirational and informative agenda.

Sara Kummer welcomed us to the Church of the Resurrection and Rhonda Merritt introduced our program speakers. (Sara and Rhonda serve on GWC’s Programs and Education Committee.) Stephen Gilbert, Executive Director of the Greenwood Community Theatre (GCT), shared with us the impetus for establishing The Penguin Project at GCT. The Penguin Project is a nationwide program that engages actors with special needs and peer mentors in a full-length theatre production.  GCT is the only site offering The Penguin Project in the state, and one of the first in this region. Stephen then introduced Lacy Gunter, the mother of last year’s youngest Penguin, who described the positive impact The Penguin Project has had on her daughter, their family, and the local special needs community.

We then turned our attention to the GWC Grants Review and Awards Committee.  Trish Hartung described the work of the Grants Committee over the past months, resulting in GWC grant guidelines, grant application form, and review and voting processes.  Laura Bachinski discussed our grant application and Nadine Gilchrist informed GWC members about materials that will assist us in our voting process in February. Mary Woodiwiss, convener of the Grants Committee, fielded questions from members.  Summer Booker, convener of the Membership Committee, concluded the program by thanking our speakers for their presentations and our members and guests for their attendance, reminding us that memberships for 2019 may be renewed between now and December 31st, and encouraging us to continue to spread the good news about GWC.