WAXAHACHIE — Building a stronger Ellis County was the idea behind the community outreach program “100 Givers.” The program gives residents the chance to support local nonprofits that serve the community each day with a yearly contribution of $100.

Initially, the program was set for 100 residents to take part, but interests from the community grew into what are now 106 givers.

John Wyckoff, who is the director of the Ellis County Children’s Advocacy Center, got the idea for the program after reading an article in the Dallas Morning News about an organization that raises $10,000 for a different nonprofit organization annually. After reading about the group in Dallas, Wyckoff brought the idea to Waxahachie to help nonprofits in the area.

“I think that once people understood that the money was going to stay in Ellis County and go to a non-profit agency here in Ellis County and it is only $100 once a year. They kept thinking it was a $100 a month,” Wyckoff said. “It is kind of like (that game) when you get in the circle and the story gets back to you and it is not the same. The story kept changing. So then I sent the criteria out and they said ‘I’ll do this.’ They were very energetic that they would have an input of which agencies would be nominated, and they have the ability to vote for the top three. They liked that.”

Wyckoff thanked Joe Rust, who helped him get the word out to people about the project to the community, for his assistance.

Wyckoff said the members had nominated 14 Ellis County non-profits and voting is underway at this time. The top three vote-getters will then be asked to make a presentation to the group in January.

Wyckoff added that the non-profit presenting to the 100 Givers must have a particular project in mind for the funds. Funds cannot be used for operational expenses. It has to be specific need or project.

Following the presentations, another vote will be taken to select who receives the donation. Each member of the 100 Givers will then donate $100 of their personal money to the non-profit agency. The total donation to the single non-profit is $10,600. Members of the 100 Givers then follow up with the non-profit to see if the project or work has been completed checking items such as receipts or photos.

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