Nonprofit Network Launched in South Georgia

Staff Report From Georgia CEO

Thursday, August 16th, 2018

A year-long effort to form a network of nonprofits that serve south Georgia is about to become a reality. The South Georgia Nonprofit Network, a regional organization that brings together nonprofits of all sizes and missions that serve communities across the southern part of the state, has begun operations.

SGNN aims to strengthen nonprofit organizations by providing professional development training, management tools and networking opportunities that will enhance their ability to serve their diverse constituencies.

“Nonprofit organizations are often very under-appreciated and yet the benefits they provide to a community can hardly be calculated in either economic or humanitarian terms,” says Steve Jaramillo, president of Greater Valdosta United Way and SGNN Board member. “I expect that this new organization will be well received by South Georgia’s nonprofit community.”

Among the initial services available to SGNN members is an email ‘listserv’ that allows nonprofit leaders to communicate with their counterparts who have shared interests. A website is currently in development and a nonprofit leadership conference is scheduled for September 25 on the VSU campus.

The new organization is an outgrowth of a leadership training event sponsored in 2017 by the Harley Langdale, Jr. Foundation in Valdosta. More than sixty area nonprofit leaders – double the number expected - gathered to learn from experts and to share with one another.

Event organizers were surprised to learn that leaders of nonprofits who had worked in the same community for years in many cases were not familiar with their nonprofit counterparts. Following the event, many participants urged organizers to find a way to keep the momentum going.

“A network of nonprofit leaders that promotes professional development and sharing not only will benefit the leaders of these organizations but also will enhance the services they provide, often to the most vulnerable among us,” Jaramillo noted.

Focusing on issues and services of value to Network members from charitable, educational, scientific and other nonprofit groups, SGNN leaders seek to create a strong, unified voice to raise the nonprofit sector’s visibility and to help them bring the highest standard of service possible to the thousands of constituents they serve across south Georgia.

Anyone interested in attending the September 25 nonprofit leadership conference should contact event organizer Steve McWilliams at (404) 312-8715 or steve@longleafpa.org. Information on Network participation will be available at the conference.