The Women's Giving Circle of Southwest Florida was founded in 2012 as a fund of the Community Foundation of Collier County. Founding Members from both Lee and Collier Counties were: Karen Biernesser, Linda Penniman, Barbara Knepshield, Mana Holtz, Marty Howard, Diane Lepola, Nancy Cohen, Jane Doherty, Sue Guben, and Sally Gleason.
In 2013 the Founding Members awarded two grants totaling $10,000.
In 2014, the Founding Members continued as they had the previous year and awarded three grants totaling $10,000
As our membership grew we were able to award $22,500 in grants to six organizations.
Our membership continued to grow and we awarded $46,000 to seven organizations
Our membership continued to grow and we awarded $55,500 to five organizations
We helped those in our community most effected by Hurricane Irma. We awarded
$61,000 to four organizations.
To date we have granted $205,000 in both Lee and Collier County.
In 2019 our focus was "Health and Mental Wellness" We awarded $83,000 to four organizations that serve both Lee and Collier Counties.
We have given $288,000 in grants over 7 years!
Our 2020 focus was "Senior Health and Support Services" We awarded $87,000 to 6 organizations that serve both Lee and Collier Counties.
We have given $375,000 over 8 years!
With the COVID-19 pandemic, we adjusted our process a bit, shortening our usual time frame in order to get urgently needed funds to our grantees faster.
We awarded $87,000 this year to organizations assisting those affected by COVID for a cumulative total since our inception of over $462,000!
This year in addition to our grants of $87,000 we donated $8,000 to Meals of Hope to provide food security during this pandemic.