1.5 Understanding Your Grant Year Calendar

The Impact100 Grant year tends to flow from activity to activity. 

Looking at the timeline, “Member Recruitment” season begins each Grant Cycle. For existing Impact100 chapters, that means we begin recruiting for next year – at this year’s Annual Meeting.

Unlike most other nonprofits, Impact100 has a firm date that marks the end of that year’s membership drive. Membership recruiting begins at the Annual Meeting and ends three to five months later, on a well-publicized date.

During this phase of the calendar, there are a series of events where potential members can learn more about Impact100 and join. These events should be at different locations and days of the week and times of day – in order to accommodate every potential member in your community. NOTE: A member does NOT have to attend an event in order to join. She can simply pay her membership dues and she is in!

Once the membership deadline has passed, we typically schedule the first BIG EVENT – the Big Reveal – two to three weeks after your membership cutoff date. This is the celebration where you announce to the community exactly how many members you have – and how much money you’ll be giving away during this grant cycle.

Once the community knows how much money your Impact100 chapter will be giving away, they need to learn how to apply for your significant grants. 

The next segment in your grant cycle are the nonprofit training sessions. These workshops will educate area nonprofits on your application process, eligibility requirements and deadlines. Our grants are significant and our process is rigorous. Nonprofits find these sessions to be very valuable.

Focus Area Committee (FAC) trainings happen next. While your nonprofits are busy preparing their grant applications, it is time to train your member/volunteers who serve on your Focus Area Committees performing grant reviews, financial assessments (through CIRC) and making Site Visits.

Grant applications will be due approximately four weeks after training. Your Focus Area Committees get to work reviewing the applications and making site visits until each has selected their nonprofit Finalist who will vie for our grant.

Our second BIG EVENT is our Meet the Finalists – This is where we announce our five Finalists to the community. We shine the light on their important work and celebrate them. This is designed to be a media event and some Impact100 chapters refer to this as a “press conference” rather than an “event”. Regardless of what you call it, this event highlights the amazing work of your worthy nonprofit Finalists and is the simplest of our signature events.

The final and most important BIG EVENT of all is the ANNUAL MEETING. If members only attend one meeting all year – it should be this. Your five Finalists will each make a timed presentation, members will cast their votes and grants will be awarded at this meeting. The Annual meeting is also the official kick-off to membership recruiting for the next grant year.

Most Impact 100 chapters take an entire year to complete the entire grant cycle. They create a pause in the schedule in the summer months, when appropriate.

In order to obtain the synergies that come with a unified and synchronized calendar, the Impact100 community is currently working to determine the optimal calendar for every community to follow.  Once the calendar has been established, it will be detailed here. Expect an announcement as your trigger to please come back to this module to learn more.