100 Men! raise big money

More than $18,000 was raised last week in less than 60 minutes for the Canadian Mental Health Association in Kelowna.

The 100 Men Who Give a Damn!, a group of men from Kelowna and the surrounding area who donate $100 four times a year to a charity, met for the first time on Aug. 5.

The Hotel El Dorado donated their space to the group for the meeting and 140 out of the 211 members showed up.

They listened to three charities give a five-minute speech about what their charity does, and then voted on where their collective money would go.

They decided on the CHMA’s Ready to Rent initiative, a program that helps young adults build skills and gain knowledge on how to find and maintain rental housing.

“When I turned 19, I was out on my own, I was going to school, get a job, but if things don’t go well, I have my parents to fall back on,” said Brett Millard, co-founder of 100 Men. “What if you didn’t have that support network? So they’re taking 19 to 25 year olds and they are giving them some support as they transition fully into adulthood.”

The official event took under an hour, but Millard said plenty of men stuck around until after 10 p.m., socializing and networking.

As of now, Millard said the event has raised more than $18,000, but he is expecting more to come in.

“We don’t know for sure how much it’s going to be,” he said. “The idea of joining is if you can't make an event, you still send your check in, you’re kind of committing to $400 a year. I still think we’ll get pretty close to that $20,000 mark, I know lots of guys who are out of town that said ‘Hey I’ll drop it off in a week when I’m back.’”

Millard said he is looking towards the future at the next event, which will be held Nov. 4 at Bottega Inn & Studio.

“Our biggest issue in the future is that we’re going to outgrow that space,” Millard said. “We’re still looking to grow the group, we’d love to see more people sign up. Especially after the success of the first one, I think we can make this thing considerably bigger.”

To sign up for the group, check out their website here


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