Being a part of the Women’s Philanthropy Circle or the Men’s Philanthropy Group is an incredible way to get involved in giving back for someone who is “community-minded and wants to go about giving in a slightly different way,” says Lee Miller, financial advisor. Barb Engelhardt, an insurance agent/owner, adds that the Women’s Circle is great for women who “have a philanthropic heart but not a lot of time.”
Four times a year, the groups gather for food, fun, and friendship—with a side of philanthropy. Each member contributes $1,000 a year, half of which is granted annually and the other half of which is placed into the corresponding endowment fund to help grow the impact potential for years to come.
“It’s fun to get different perspectives and consider angles I wouldn’t have thought about before,” said Lee.
Each member brings their own ideas for needs in the community, and the group decides which nonprofits to grant to.
“It’s instant gratification. You know you’re helping someone immediately that could use your lift,” says Barb, who has been a part of the Women’s Philanthropy Circle since its beginnings. “It’s amazing to see all we’ve accomplished so far.”
Recently, the groups have granted to provide clothing for women and children in need, holiday food baskets, furniture for the local women’s shelter, support for the Youth Leadership Academy, and coats for kids, among other projects.
Although the donations are sometimes small, they make an immediate impact on the lives of the recipients.
“When we combine our resources, we can make a bigger impact,” says Barb.
Both groups are always accepting new members. Contact the Bay Area Community Foundation to learn how to get involved.