100 Men Who Give a Damn: Happy Hour Charity

Members hold four hourlong happy hours a year at which charities make pitches for donations.

charity

THE GROUP MAKES FUNDRAISING QUICK, EASY, AND FUN FOR PROFESSIONAL MEN


Charlie Gillis has done the golf tournaments, the dinners and other fundraisers for charity. All are great ways to give back, but Gillis felt a new, innovative approach was needed in Dallas.

He got his inspiration on a trip to Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada where he found out about the group 100 Men Who Give a Damn.

The executive director of the Munsch Hardt Kopf & Harr law firm in Dallas co-founded a local chapter that’s raised almost $25,000 in just two quarterly meetings.

“The beauty of it from a charity standpoint, you get picked, you might walk out of there with 115 or 120 checks in your pocket.”
Charlie Gillis

The 100 Men Who Give a Damn Dallas makes fundraising quick, easy, and fun for professional men. The members, which currently number about 120, nominate three Dallas-area charities they’d like to see featured at the event. An outside group narrows the nominations down to a final three.

Then, at the happy hour events, the charity gets to present to the group and explain why they should be awarded money.

The pitches are similar to Shark Tank, though much friendlier and less intimidating, Gillis said. At the end, the 100 Men Who Give a Damn each write a $100 check to the winning charity. Some write checks for the other charities, too.

“The beauty of it from a charity standpoint, you get picked, you might walk out of there with 115 or 120 checks in your pocket,” Gillis said. “We don’t touch the money. The charities get 100 percent of the money so there’s no cost associated with it. And even if you don’t win, you might walk out of there with support or a lead on a new board member.”

100 MEN HOSTS FOUR HAPPY HOURS A YEAR FOR CHARITY

So basically, members commit to four, hour-long happy hours and $400 a year. 

“That’s just a model that works really well for certain guys and girls,” Gillis said. “It’s very easy. Some of our members are younger professionals. This is their first foray into giving.”

The first winner was Community Partners of Dallas, who provides assistance to abused or neglected children.

“They had a leak in their warehouse so water got in and destroyed a lot of the stuff that had already been collected,” Gillis said. “The timing was perfect. It struck a chord with our members.”

The group ended up getting more than $11,500.

“It’s very easy. Some of our members are younger professionals. This is their first foray into giving.”
Charlie Gillis

The concept is spreading fast. There’s already a Fort Worth chapter that has about 50 members and a Dallas women’s group will have its first meeting on Sept. 13. For more information on the women’s group, visit its website. A Houston group also is forming. Gillis also has gotten inquiries from Nashville and other cities.

The Dallas group meets at the Naveen Jindal School of Management at the University of Texas at Dallas, which donates the space.

“They help us do all the coordination, parking passes and have staff help with logistics at the meeting,” Gillis said. “It’s been a huge benefit for us.”

Happy hour drinks are provided by sponsors, including Munsch Hardt Kopf & Harr.

This all started in Nova Scotia with a group called 100 Women Who Care. The wives started hounding their husbands for not participating, saying they don’t give a damn. Eventually, the men responded by starting their own group, taking the name: 100 Men Who Give a Damn.

For more information about 100 Men Who Give a Damn and how to become a member, visit the group’s website


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