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Lawmaker encourages college women to embrace philanthropy

Lawmaker encourages college women to embrace philanthropy
April 12
06:00 2018

College women gathered to discuss philanthropy got a surprise Thursday, April 5.

N.C. Rep. Evelyn Terry dropped by to encourage the women attending an ACEY Group event in The Winston-Salem Foundation building.

She told the young women, “It is good to be a giver of myself.

“Being a philanthropist does not mean you are wealthy. It means that you are a person who understands what it means to give of yourself and make things better.
“Go do good!” Terry said.

The ACEY Group, which was named in March a Chronicle Organization of the Year, is a group member of The Women’s Fund of Winston-Salem.

“Impacting Lives Through Philanthropy” was the title of the workshop held in collaboration with Winston-Salem State University (WSSU) and the Not-for-Profit Management Program at Salem College.

Kathy Hoyt, an ACEY Group member who was an organizer of the workshop, told the young women, “When we talk about philanthropy, we’re not necessarily talking about money.” She said it also includes the time and effort people put in to help others. She said she hoped the woman would be inspired to become leaders in philanthropy.

The workshop included presentations from four young women:

*Latoya Cheek, who is an ACEY Group member, chairwoman of the Finance Committee of The Women’s Fund of Winston-Salem and treasurer of the Fund, in 2006 formed G.R.O.W. Inc. (Growing Radiant Outstanding Women), a 501(c)3 nonprofit that provides economically disadvantaged young women with financial literacy, health education, leadership skills and career exploration.

*Jennie Heaton of Young Leaders United, which is part of United Way, volunteers with various nonprofit groups in Winston-Salem.

*Tyokia Harrison, a sophomore majoring in sociology and Africana studies at WSSU, last year formed The Smile Campaign movement, which engages students with love, education and advocacy to encourage them to take care of their mental health.

*Sabrina Otero, who is a student in the Not-for-Profit Management program at Salem College, became a philanthropist starting at age 13 with the help of friends and family. She and friends put on the musical “Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog” by Joss Whedon in her community theater. She raised $1,200 for the American Red Cross. At age 15, she and her friends wrote a play based on the video game The Legend of Zelda. They raised $4,000 just on the production for Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation to combat pediatric cancer, but people in the community took on projects to help raise money and the figure ballooned to $17,000.

The women split into five groups to further discuss the concept of philanthropy, then reconvened as a group to tell the action plan each group developed. The young women said the workshop enlightened them about philanthropy.
“I applaud all of the speakers,” one woman said. She said the workshop made her think about what she had been doing, and she just realized she is a philanthropist.

Dr. Betty Alexander, president of the ACEY Group, told the women, “I see you as women warriors in our community, in our United States.”

She told them they are the people who are helping to change the community, with the projects they are involved with.

“This is the change, I felt when the ACEY Group was formed, that should be done in the community,” she said.

Sharee Fowler, assistant professor with the Not-for-Profit Management program at Salem College, and LaMonica Sloan Wilhelmi, interim associate dean of Campus Life/Career Development Services at WSSU, will provide resources and follow up with the women to see what kinds of philanthropy they are undertaking.

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Donna Rogers

Donna Rogers

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