Impact 100 Owensboro announced Thursday it will give $226,000 in grants to local nonprofits at its annual meeting in October.

Two $100,000 grants will be given, along with a $26,000 residual grant.

Also, Impact 100’s Next Generation, a spin-off group for teen girls, will give one grant worth $10,800.

The women-only giving circle is celebrating its 15th anniversary. After this year’s grants are awarded, the group will have donated a total of more than $3.3 million to community nonprofits.

Impact 100 works like this: Women pledge $1,000 each for a full membership or $500 for a half membership. By pooling resources, their power to transform organizations is magnified.

Usually, Impact 100 members host a party to reveal the amount of money the group will share with the community. Because of COVID-19, the announcement was made via a video on Facebook.

“Even in the middle of COVID-19 and this pandemic, the women of Owensboro prevailed,” Linda Wahl, Impact 100 president, told fellow members.

In an interview after the reveal, Wahl said she was pleased with the number of women who joined during such trying times. Thirty women are first-time members this year.

“Owensboro just continues to amaze me,” Wahl said. “It is a truly giving community.”

Impact 100 set a goal to raise $300,000 during its 15th year.

Early on, the organization’s leaders pulled out all the stops. They invited Wendy Steele, Impact 100’s founder, to speak at an early March anniversary celebration at the RiverPark Center and at a community breakfast the following morning.

“These were great, well-received events,” said Jodi Krahwinkel, who co-chairs the membership drive with Hope Yager.

But the nation came to a standstill shortly after Steele left town. An Impact 100 membership event later in March was canceled, and nothing else was scheduled.

Without being able to host in-person meetings, the group’s leaders relied on text messages, phone calls and social media to retain and attract members.

Impact 100’s membership drive usually ends in late March; however, the group’s leadership extended it to the end of April.

Impact 100 now moves into its grant application phase. It accepts applications from nonprofits that serve one of these focus areas: culture, education, environment and recreation, family, and health and wellness.

For more information, go to Impact100Owensboro.org.

Renee Beasley Jones, 270-228-2835, rbeasleyjones@messenger-inquirer.com

Renee Beasley Jones, 270-228-2835, rbeasleyjones@messenger-inquirer.com

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