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the Southerner Online

An upbeat website for a downtown school

the Southerner Online

An upbeat website for a downtown school

the Southerner Online

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Junior Sheehan empowers women in Impact 100 organization

Hayden Sheehan
Junior Hayden Sheehan volunteers at an Impact 100 event with juniors Ava Johnson, Vivienne Cannon, Kate Rebillot and Emma Bradley.

Rather than participating in the standard Midtown extracurriculars, junior Hayden Sheehan volunteers with an Atlanta chapter of a women-run worldwide non-profit organization – Impact 100 – which supports local non-profits.

“Their [Impact 100’s] goal and mission is to bring together at least 100 women to collectively donate $1,000, each resulting in a grants pool of $100,000,” Sheehan said. “Committees are formed of members under five sections: environment, health and wellness, arts and culture, family and education. Local nonprofit organizations will apply under one of those sections and the committees will pick a finalist.”

Sheehan was first introduced to the Impact 100 nonprofit organization through her mother, Laurie Sheehan, who is on the board of directors as the Founding Membership Chair.

“I became involved in Impact 100 from my mom,” Sheehan said. “Her grandmother [was a member of] Impact, her mom [was] and now [my mom] is. If I join Impact 100 when I turn 18, I will be the first 4th generation Impact 100 member in the world.”

Sheehan’s family have been a part of Impact 100 since the beginning chapters in the early 2000s.

“I first learned of Impact 100 back in the early 2000s when one of the first chapters started in my hometown of Pensacola, Florida,” Laurie Sheehan said. “My mom [Hayden’s grandmother] was on the board and my grandmother [Hayden’s great-grandmother] was a member. I watched the Pensacola chapter quickly grow to over 1,000 members, the largest Impact 100 chapter in the world, and give millions of dollars in grants to that community over the years.”

The Atlanta chapter of Impact 100 launched in 2022, and Sheehan has been involved since the beginning.

“From the very first informational meeting we held at the house, Hayden has volunteered at almost every event and has recruited other volunteers to support us,” Laurie Sheehan said. “We consider this volunteer group, ‘Impact 100 NextGen.’”

Sheehan has a specific role as a volunteer coordinator.

“Since my mom has a large role in Impact, she relies on me to contact and recruit as many volunteers as we need,” Sheehan said. “At the events, we do things like set up and unpack as well as greet guests, and just any small task given by the people helping us.”

Although it is only the second year of Impact 100’s Atlanta chapter, they are growing very rapidly.

“This is Impact 100 Atlanta‘s second year and this year just came to a finish after giving away $273,000 so $91,000 to three out of five charities they had selected in their final 5,” Sheehan said. “Prior to this year they had 130 members and this next year they’re aiming to hit 400 members, but if they hit 405 members, they would be the largest and fastest growing Impact 100 chapter in the world.”

Hayden’s mother appreciates Sheehan’s work with Impact 100 and said she is proud of her for everything she’s done.

“Getting personal interaction with the nonprofits has inspired Hayden and the NextGen girls to try to organize some of their own service projects to support these amazing nonprofits,” Laurie Sheehan said. “I am so proud of her for taking the initiative to make her very own impact in this community.”

Junior Ava Johnson has been friends with Sheehan for five years and admires the work that Sheehan is contributing to the nonprofit.

“I have volunteered with her a couple times, and it is always so cool to see everything that she helps with at the events and how passionate she is about the cause,” Johnson said. “She is always doing the best she can to help at the events and to gain more volunteers outside of the events.”

In her work with Impact 100, Sheehan appreciates the overall mission of the organization and its direct impact on Atlanta.

“I also like how Impact 100 does a good job to try and include a variety of representations of Atlanta,” Sheehan said. “They recognize it’s a very diverse city with many women having different economic backgrounds, [and] because of that, they fund many scholarships for women who want to be a member but can’t afford it.”

Sheehan has hopes and dreams for the future of Impact 100 in Atlanta and hopes to extend its youth programs and the number of chapters across the nation.

“I hope that Impact 100 will become a more well-known and successful nonprofit whose chapter is in almost every single city,” Sheehan said. “I also hope that the younger generations will start to adapt to it more.”

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About the Contributors
Abby Ippen
Abby Ippen, Lifestyle Section Editor
Abby Ippen is a third-year staff member and she is excited to contribute to the paper. Outside the paper, she enjoys playing soccer, running, and hanging out with friends.
Hayden Sheehan
Hayden Sheehan, Writer
Hayden is a freshman and this is her first year writing for the Southerner. In her free time, she enjoys eating Chipotle, playing tug-of-war with her dog Hobbes, and reading.

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