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Fargo Area Women Leaders Raise Over $16,000 for Community

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FARGO – October 28 was a “Day of Giving” for participants of the Center for Technology & Business Women’s Leadership Program. Armed with $100 in seed money each, this group of 18 women was challenged to grow the funds in a philanthropic project of their choice for the greater Fargo community. They paired up into teams and had just five weeks to find a cause and determine the best way to give back.

On October 28 the groups headed out to deliver their surprise donations to a variety of organizations. Recipients included Great Plains Food Bank, New American Consortium for Wellness and Empowerment, Jeremiah Program, Rape and Abuse Crisis Center, Goetz Mental Wellness, YWCA Cass Clay, March of Dimes, 4 Luv of Dog Rescue, and Growing Together. In total, the groups gave $16,443.86 in cash donations and in-kind contributions to area organizations. 

From supply drives and donation bins to helping recruit volunteers for the organizations, each team took a different approach and used their own unique methods to pay it forward in the community. Courtney Schaff and Rachel Asleson raised enough money to purchase an office printer as well as toner and paper for the New American Consortium for Wellness and Empowerment. The new printer will allow the organization to operate more effectively and better serve their clients. Alyson Bjornstad and Shelly Larson collected 87 pounds of food as well as cash donations, their contribution will cover 3000 meals for local families in need. Many of the groups also found ways to help their gifts continue to give, Mary Bommersbach and Rochelle Roesler raised $5,300 for the Jeremiah Program which will be used in part as match for their Giving Hearts Day campaign in 2016.

“This is my favorite part of the program and I’m always so impressed with what the women are able to do for their communities in such a short amount of time.” Stated Deb Eslinger, executive director of Center for Technology & Business. “The participants of the Women’s Leadership Program have already proven to others that they are tremendous leaders and this project just gives them the opportunity to prove that to themselves. Sometimes we don’t realize how capable we are of making a big difference in the lives of others, kudos to these women for going above and beyond!”

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 up with a luncheon and graduation ceremony on December 9 with keynote speaker Prairie Rose Seminole. The public is invited to attend and can purchase tickets to the luncheon at or call 701-223-0707.

Center for Technology & Business serves as the women’s business center for North Dakota and grows North Dakota’s economy by helping small business owners succeed through training, technology and business development. Their programming develops leaders, builds rural communities and mentors women business owners.