October 3, 2022

RICHMOND, Ind. — Representatives from a dozen local nonprofits recently completed a NICE! program.
The Wayne County Foundation and Forward Wayne County hosted the Nonprofit Involvement and Community Engagement series during July, according to a news release. The series was adapted from the previous Neighborhood Involvement and Community Engagement program to assist the Wayne County nonprofits
“It is incredibly important for us to give our local nonprofits the tools they need to sustain themselves,” said Rebecca Gilliam, executive director of the Wayne County Foundation. “The NICE! series provided a valuable framework for engaging with an organization’s constituents and creating a lasting plan.”
NICE!, which is funded through the Lilly Endowment, challenged the nonprofits’ representatives to focus on the community assets available and on how to achieve their goals while best serving their constituents and donors. Topics included asset-based community development, servant leadership, organizational sustainability, donor stewardship and fundraising.
“We couldn’t have been happier with our first nonprofit cohort,” said Alex Painter, the Foundation’s community engagement officer who facilitated the series. “Each participant brought their own unique vision and background to the program, which led to excellent discussion.”
Emma Ullery of Brighter Path, Inc., said completing the series with representatives from 11 other nonprofits was valuable.
“Thanks to the Foundation, Brighter Path was able to engage with other community nonprofits to build connections, create partnerships, and learn valuable nonprofit management skills,” she said.
The Wayne County Foundation, which has fostered and encouraged philanthropic giving since 1979, plans continued nonprofit training opportunities this year and beyond. For more information, follow the Wayne County Foundation on social media or visit waynecountyfoundation.org.
The original six-week Neighborhood Involvement and Community Engagement program included 22 participants in three cohorts for training on how to bring a group together, how to create a project by engaging the community and how to use the project to better neighborhoods and communities across the county.
Those who completed the neighborhood training were eligible to apply for place-making grants. Seven grants totaling $20,485 were awarded this year.

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