First 100 Women Who Care meeting taking place in Kirkland Lake

The first 100 Women Who Care initiative meeting is taking place tonight (Oct. 25) in Kirkland Lake.

The group is built of female volunteers wanting to make a change in the Kirkland Lake region.

Josée Merrick, one of the women spearheading the initiative, said the group’s volunteers have been working diligently over the last couple of months to get the group off the ground.

“They have been successful so far in securing bank accounts, registering as a not-for-profit organization, developing forms, securing venues, launching a Facebook page, developing a local list of charities and causes, and building a member base,” Merrick said.

She said there was an overwhelming interest in the summer when the group initially reached out to see if local women would be interested in taking part.

“We are looking forward to working through our first meeting as a group and developing our local chapter to fit the needs of this particular group and area,” she said.

“At the meeting, we will be taking feedback and we will send out a survey to capture the members’ thinking. The chapter belongs to its members.”

The first meeting will support the current fill a purse for sister campaign, which will go towards the Pavilion Women’s Centre and the soon-to-open Northeastern Recovery Centre, as well as the Kirkland Lake Salvation Army.

Group members will donate gently used purses and bags and personal hygiene necessities such as shampoo, conditioner, body wash, toothbrushes, toothpaste, tampons, pads and deodorant, with members choosing where they want their items to go.

The one-hour meeting is taking place at the Northern College cafeteria in Kirkland Lake at 7 p.m. with doors opening at 6 p.m.

“We encourage members to pay for the first two meetings up front, for a total of $200. Although this is not necessary, it allows the group to earn interest on the monies in the account to pay for overhead costs and allows us to plan for the next meeting,” Merrick said.

Merrick is asking those attending to bring a self-addressed stamped envelope so the recipient can be sent a tax receipt. Those who have not paid yet can bring a cheque, bank draft, or send an e-transfer.

“You will be provided with a nomination ticket to nominate a cause or charity of your choice along with a voting ballot. All nomination tickets will be put in a hat and three tickets will be chosen. If the same cause is pulled more than once, one will be returned to the hat and another ticket will be pulled,” Merrick said.

“If the cause you nominated is one of the three tickets pulled, be prepared to speak a bit to the cause. There can be multiple speakers, however, no visual aids please, just a short three to five-minute description, and there will be time also for member questions. You will then use your ballot to vote on the cause you would like to see win. Please note that proxy votes for absent members are also submitted. Volunteers will count the votes while the ladies relax.”

The winning cause will be announced and the other two nominations that did not win will be put back in the hat for the next meeting, Merrick said.

“At the next meeting in April, you will follow the same process and have a chance to re-enter another or the same cause as the past meeting. The winning cause will present at our next meeting in April detailing how they used the donations. Winning causes have a two-year cool-down period and can not win for two years after they have won, however, exceptions may be accepted based on what the membership wants,” she said.

“Members will receive a survey sometime after the meeting to collect their thoughts on how the meeting went, how it could improve, their preference on next meeting date and what they would like to see at the next meeting.”

For more information contact or visit their Facebook page.

Marissa Lentz, Local Journalism Initiative,