NAPLES — Guadalupe Center has launched the Golden Circle Giving Society to recognize and celebrate the impact of women in philanthropy.
Golden Circle Giving Society was founded on the belief that a collective vision, especially of women, working toward a common goal strengthens the intention and impact of giving. Fifteen generous women from Southwest Florida initially joined the group, which will have seasonal networking events, learning opportunities and discussions about philanthropy.
“Women give to philanthropic and charitable causes at a higher rate than men – in both treasure and time – and generally have a strong pulse on the areas of greatest need within the community,” said Guadalupe Center President and CEO Dawn Montecalvo. “Golden Circle Giving Society convenes this collective wisdom to focus on a specific area of critical importance in Immokalee – education – to continue building a cycle of prosperity for local students and families.”
Golden Circle members recently voted to fund their first initiative, which was hiring a behavioral health specialist to work one-on-one with students who need proactive interventions to help them find academic, social, behavioral and emotional success.
“Many students need to overcome behavioral issues that can interrupt their ability to learn,” said Behavioral Health Specialist Bertha Mendez, a longtime teacher in Guadalupe Center’s nationally accredited Early Childhood Education Program. “Decreasing or eliminating these barriers means we can increase their potential to learn, thrive and grow academically, and they’ll ultimately experience more success in the classroom.”
The inaugural group of Golden Circle members consists of Alice Arena, Gloria Beissinger, Paula Winkler Doman, Phyllis Ettinger, Pat Forbes, Sally Foster, Lisa McNichol, Dawn Montecalvo, Marcia Nunn, Kathy Sachs, Meryl Towarnicki, Dorothy Wax, Barbara Uible, Ellen Vanderburg and Linda Yost. Members hail from states across the country and represent a variety of industries, including education, finance, architecture, interior design, real estate, advertising and more.
“We all recognize that a high-quality education creates endless possibilities for children,” Yost said, “and by providing them with this opportunity, we can help create a cycle of prosperity for these students, their families and the community of Immokalee.”
To join the Golden Circle Giving Society, prospective members can make a minimum gift of $2,500 annually to help fund lifechanging programs and initiatives at Guadalupe Center. This fall, members will vote to fund another project, and in the spring, members will convene for the second annual “Women, Wine & Well-Being” event. For more information, please visit GuadalupeCenter.org/Golden-Circle-Giving-Society or call Maria Bustamante at 239-657-7141.