Collective Giving Changes Lives

Photography provided by Impact 100


When women come together to raise money for community betterment, they accomplish more than one woman can accomplish alone. That’s the simple – and successful – premise of Impact 100, Inc., which annually awards transformational $100,000-plus grants to nonprofit organizations here and across the nation. 


“Impact 100 was founded in Cincinnati in 2001 as a meaningful way to respond to needs in our community through a collective giving concept,” explains Clare Zlatic Blankemeyer, president. “The original idea was to promote philanthropy by bringing 100 women together, each donating $1,000, and to pool those dollars to award transformational grants each year to nonprofit organizations.” Today, members commit to giving $500 or $1,000 when they join. The Cincinnati chapter, with a membership of more than 400, raised $416,000 for 2018, and will award four $104,000 grants to selected nonprofit applicants from Greater Cincinnati, Northern Kentucky and Eastern Indiana.


Examples of Greater Cincinnati lives changed by Impact 100 grants last year:

First Step Home (FSH) – Cincinnati’s women-only addiction treatment center continues to grow its Terry Schoenling Home for Mothers and Infants pilot program, designed to provide one-of-a-kind residential treatment for opiate-addicted pregnant women and their newborn babies during the first 30 days of the babies’ lives. The $101,000 grant helps fund doctor and nurse visits, serving up to eight moms and eight babies at a time, impacting 72-138 lives annually. Lighthouse Youth & Family Services, Inc.


(LYFS) – A United Way agency focused on advancing the dignity and well-being of children, youth and families in need, is using its $101,000 grant to build an agricultural learning center in Madisonville. The center’s goals include improving educational outcomes for Lighthouse Community School (LCS) students, improving future employment outcomes for LCS students and other LYFS program participants, and offering better access to healthy food for LCS students and Madisonville residents. “There is something amazing about bringing people together in this collective, philanthropic mission,” says Zlatic Blankemeyer. “And that’s what keeps Impact 100 members coming back.”


• Impact 100, Inc., was founded in Cincinnati in 2001 by Wendy Steele and her close friends and business associates.


• Nonprofit organizations submit applications for funding through one of five key IMPACT areas: Culture; Education; Environment, Preservation & Recreation; Family; and Health & Wellness.


• Impact 100 has grown into a movement with chapters in more than 50 U.S. cities and two foreign countries.


• Membership is intergenerational, with ages ranging from 20s to 80s. • Collectively, Impact 100 chapters have awarded more than $45 million in grants, and the Cincinnati chapter alone has awarded more than $4 million in grant money locally.


• Cincinnati’s 2018 Impact 100 team, consisting of 400 members (its largest roster yet), has raised a total of $416,000, to be awarded in four $104,000 transformational grants to candidates selected by the membership, culminating with the annual awards celebration on September 13, 2018.


Impact 100, Inc., is headquartered at 4010 Executive Park Drive, Suite 100, Cincinnati, OH 45241. For more information, call 513.554.3065, email or v