Impact100 Nashville Awards Annual Grants to Middle Tennessee Nonprofits
Impact100 Nashville is a women’s giving circle that gifts impactful grants to nonprofit organizations in the Middle Tennessee area. Their mission is to build a diverse membership of local women who accelerate positive change through collaborative philanthropy. Impact100 Nashville is part of a larger global initiative called Impact100, with many chapters throughout the U.S..
The Impact100 model involves a community of women each giving $1,000 in order to pool their resources and give a chosen nonprofit a generous grant. Each woman who gives $1,000 gets one vote in the big, end-of-the-year voting event. The grant finalists will give a presentation before members vote and the nonprofit with the most votes will be chosen for the grant – this process repeats every year!
Impact100 Nashville’s Board President, Janet Walls, has lived in Williamson County, Tennessee for 36 years and feels very passionately about giving back to the community.
“I could think of so many examples regarding the incredible impact that these grants give nonprofits,” says Walls. “There is a story for every one of our grant recipients. Every single recipient comes back and tells us their story.”
Board President Walls explains how much the organization has grown since its inception in 2014.
“We have crossed the threshold of $1,000,000 in total giving which is a huge celebration for us,” says Walls. “Our first grant was $26,000 because we only had 26 members. Now we are at $250,000, so we are growing and we are making a big impact on our community.”
Walls goes on to talk about the Impact100 Nashville recipients from Williamson County, one being Tennessee Kids Belong. This local nonprofit received a grant of $102,000 in 2021.
“Tennessee Kids Belong’s mission is to improve the experiences of kids in foster care,” says Walls. “They used a lot of our funds to drive awareness through video production for children who were aging out of foster care. They wanted to make people aware that children still need families, even in that stage of life.”
Another Williamson County nonprofit that has received an Impact100 Nashville grant is ShowerUp in 2018.
“They were founded by someone who saw a need for providing hot showers and clean clothes to the homeless community,” shares Walls. “We bought them a mobile shower unit and the grant was large enough that they actually purchased another shower unit. They have since expanded into many other areas outside of Middle Tennessee.
Walls expresses how empowering she finds Impact100 to be for the women within the community.
“What happens with Impact100 is it gives women the ability to pool their resources and make a big impact,” explains Walls. “As an individual, I am not able to give $100,000 grants, but together we can when ninety-nine other women give $1,000. I think that’s very empowering and it has been a real joy to be a part of this community.
The two primary ways of getting involved with Impact 100 Nashville is by becoming a member or through sponsorship.
“We are open to anyone interested in joining,” says Walls. “One of the things I have enjoyed the most about being involved in Impact100 is that we draw from a wide variety of women with different interests and professions. It’s a really interesting and diverse group that has a common desire to give back. That common goal of giving back to our community is what brings us together.”
“We depend on our corporate sponsors to offset a lot of the expenses,” says Walls. “We have no paid staff, it’s all volunteer-based. Our goal is to raise money and 100% of the $1,000 that a woman donates goes straight to the nonprofit recipient.”
Walls elaborates on how empowering and special Impact100 Nashville is for those who are involved.
“Impact100 is one of the best things I have ever done in terms of an investment of my time and money,” says Walls. “Come to an event and just experience this group for yourself. There is no charge for our events and no obligation to join, but I think every person who attends an event walks away with a new perspective. I highly encourage anyone to come.
Impact100 Nashville has a variety of upcoming events for those who are interested in learning more or getting involved. Learn more about these opportunities to connect here!