Home > A Ground-Breaking Initiative to Build "Momentum" for Georgia's Coastal Nonprofits Launches This Week

A Ground-Breaking Initiative to Build "Momentum" for Georgia's Coastal Nonprofits Launches This Week

The Georgia Center for Nonprofits is leading a partnership that brings together federal, state and local funders with community stakeholders to build capacity and impact for nonprofits serving some of the state's most challenged rural communities.

ATLANTA — Nov. 14, 2011 — With this Thursday's kick-off event, the "Momentum" initiative breaks ground on a two-year project of intensive support for nonprofit organizations in Georgia's economically challenged coastal region to help them tackle pressing needs and deliver greater community impact. As one of only five federal capacity-building projects granted this year, the Georgia Center for Nonprofits is tasked with leading this initiative to rapidly enhance the performance of 150 key nonprofits across Georgia's coastal region.

A 2009 research assessment conducted by the Georgia Center for Nonprofits paved the way, identifying the depth of problems faced by these communities and the daunting challenges faced by the nonprofits that serve them. The report documented that this four-county area on Georgia's lower coast—encompassing Charlton, Brantley, Camden and Glynn counties— faces some of the most persistent poverty, educational challenges, unemployment, health deficits, and negative housing conditions in the state.  

The roughly 200 nonprofits active in the region are challenged by a combination of declining resources and rising demand, compounded by declining state budgets and a historic scarcity of philanthropic funds directed to the area. This initiative breaks new ground in focusing substantial funding support and capacity-building resources on rural coastal Georgia. 

Over the next two years, the "Momentum" partnership of local, state and federal support will deliver an array of urgently needed capacity-building support to a core group of organizations in the four-county area. Spearheaded by the Georgia Center for Nonprofits, the initiative is funded through grants from the Corporation for National and Community Service Nonprofit Capacity Building Program and the coastal-based St. Mary's United Methodist Church Foundation. Key partners also include United Way of the Coastal Empire, United Way of Camden County, Communities of Coastal Georgia Foundation, College of Coastal Georgia, and Americorps VISTA.

"This project has the potential to be a game changer for Georgia's coastal communities, and a model for collaboration in rural communities across our state," says Karen Beavor, President and CEO of Georgia Center for Nonprofits. "We are eager to begin, and honored by the opportunity provided by this federal grant and our local partners to deliver much-needed performance-building support to our coastal nonprofits."

“With millions of people and families facing uncertain futures, it is critical to better leverage resources to help the nonprofit sector drive community solutions," says Robert Velasco, Acting CEO of the Corporation for National and Community Service, adding that "through these grants and other efforts, we are helping nonprofits better deliver and demonstrate results on pressing problems.”