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Bismarck-Mandan Women Leaders Raise Over $17,000 for Community

BISMARCK – May 8 was a “Day of Giving” for participants of the Women’s Leadership Program (WLP). Armed with $100 in seed money each, this group of 21 women was tasked to grow the funds in a philanthropic project of their choice for the Bismarck-Mandan community. They broke off into smaller teams and had six weeks to find a cause and determine the best way to give back.

On May 8, the groups headed out to deliver their surprise donations to a variety of organizations. Recipients included Tracy’s Sanctuary House, Abused Adult Resource Center, Bismarck Public Schools and Jeanette Myrhe Elementary School, Miles of Love Dog Rescue, Missouri Slope Lutheran Care Center, Lincoln Elementary PTO, Mandan Public Schools and Family Wellness – Youth Works, Bismarck Veterans Memorial Public Library, Inner Groundwork, and Furry Friends Rockin’ Rescue. In total, the groups gave $17,185.71 in cash donations and in-kind contributions to area organizations.

With a variety of causes and individual skillsets, each team took a different approach using their own unique methods to pay it forward in the community. From one group organizing a bowling event and raffle tickets for themed baskets to another group co-hosting an event with a local flower shop Beyond the Blooms to teach attendees how to arrange a beautiful bouquet of flowers, each project brought awareness and much needed financial and in-kind support to local organizations and those they serve.

Jeanette Myhre Elementary School and Bismarck Public Schools received both in-kind and monetary donations thanks to the efforts of Jade Neuwmann and Sommer Hunke. The pair coordinated a fundraising event called ‘Cut’s for Kids’ where area volunteer hair styles gave over 60 free haircuts to low-income children who attend Jeanette Myhre Elementary School. School faculty arranged to have an all school assembly inviting all the students to be present to celebrate the check presentation.

“Since 2012, the Women’s Leadership Program has raised nearly $340,000 of cash and in-kind donations for organizations across the state. I’m extremely proud and impressed with what the women are able to do for their communities in such a short amount of time.” Stated Deidre Hillman, Program Director of North Dakota Women’s Business Center (ND WBC), a program of CTB.” The women in the class this year rose to the challenge and thought creatively on how to give-back. The variety of organizations they gave to from the youth to the elderly was rewarding to be a part of this year. It’s fun to see it come full-circle as two of the organizations selected as recipients this year are now managed by past graduates of the program.”

The Women’s Leadership Program is a six-month program dedicated to expanding the professional, personal, community, and health leadership skills for women of all ages. The program will wrap with a graduation social on June 6, at the Bismarck Municipal Country Club in Bismarck. The public is invited to attend and can purchase tickets to the luncheon at

CTB operates the North Dakota Women’s Business Center (ND WBC), which is part of a national network of more than 100 centers offering one-on-one business counseling, training, networking, workshops, technical assistance, and mentoring to women entrepreneurs on many business development topics, including but not limited to business startup, financial management, marketing, and procurement. Specific ND WBC programming opportunities include the Women’s Leadership Program, the Women’s Business Summ