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The Networking Alliance: A Look Inside Our Organization

Sarah presenting at the Networking Alliance

The Networking Alliance is the Center for Family and Community Engagement’s advisory council. Members of this council are appointed by the Center director and serve two-year terms. Members are from family and youth groups, community organizations, public agencies, and universities. The Networking Alliance provides guidance to the Center based on their knowledge, experience, and ethical commitments. The purpose of the Networking Alliance is to help the Center stay on track with its principles, build connections to opportunities and resources, and provide guidance as the Center moves forward in its efforts.

This semi-annual meeting recently took place on April 12, 2019. Networking Alliance members, as well as Center staff members attended the meeting. The agenda was as follows: Welcome and Staffing Updates, Projects Updates/Highlights of Center Activities, Our Community at a Glance, and Positioning for the Future.

Welcome and Staffing Updates:

The meeting began with a general welcome, followed by the introduction of new Center staff members. The Center for Family and Community Engagement recently hired Glenda Clare as a Family Partner Specialist and Ginger Ervin and Marissa Magnusson as Trainers. The Center is excited to welcome our new team members! Additionally, the Center welcomed Jessica Barker as our new graduate student and Communication Specialist. The Center also acknowledged and bid farewell to soon-to-be-graduates, Raisa Mathies, our Masters of Social Work intern, and Michelle White, our Graduate Research Assistant. For more information on our staff, please visit our staff page.

Projects Updates/Highlights of Center Activities:

The following projects were presented during the meeting. The Center is very proud of all the hard work being put into the betterment of our communities. These projects are just a brief highlight of a few activities conducted by the Center. For more training opportunities, projects, and general information about the Center, please visit our website.

Military and Veteran Needs in North Carolina. The objective of this project is to form a picture of needs for military service members, veterans, families, and veteran/military serving organizations. For this project, we’ve received outreach and facilitation support from USO, NCServes, Team Red White and Blue, and Team Rubicon. In order to gain a better understanding of how to best meet the needs of this community, substantial data collection is underway. This is an ongoing project with the end goal being to return information back to veteran/military serving organizations, so that they can work together to better serve the veteran and transitioning military community.

Foster Family Alliance – NC (FFA-NC). Foster Family Alliance of North Carolina is a nonprofit organization supporting children and youth in foster care, and the dedicated families and professionals that care for them. FFA-NC is currently funded by the NC Division of Social Services in partnership with the Center for Family and Community Engagement. The Center for Family and Community Engagement provides technical assistance to the organization. FFA-NC’s mission is to build a community of individuals and organizations serving foster children through networking, education, and advocacy. For more information about this organization, please visit their website.

Opioid Misuse Prevention Training. This project’s immediate goals include evaluating Overdose Lifelines “This Is Not About Drugs” program among all 7th grade students in a rural North Carolina County; conducting a content analysis and review of program materials; and conducting interviews with key stakeholders. Long term goals include adapting or developing new program materials and conducting a more rigorous evaluation of effectiveness. This project is funded in partnership with NC State University College of Humanities and Social Sciences’s Research Office, Center for Family and Community Engagement, and NC TraCS.

Our Community at a Glance:

The Center’s primary community ranges across North Carolina and consists of a variety of individuals and organizations. The Networking Alliance and Center staff discussed a variety of gaps and needs within the community. Furthermore, an extensive discussion on potential strategies for improvement was also provided. For more information on our community, please visit our local and global partnerships page.

Positioning for the Future:

Strategies dedicated to the improvement of the Center’s future endeavors were also addressed during the meeting. This discussion focused on ways for the Center to promote its mission, which is to advance safe, healthy, and productive families and communities. The Center hopes to achieve this through more engagement with NC State University as a whole, as well as reaching out and developing relationships across the state of North Carolina. Furthermore, a discussion of leadership and structure within the organization was presented and an exploration of potential new positions within the Center was addressed. Lastly, funding and giving were addressed. The Center acknowledged and appreciated the efforts of our staff on NC State’s first Day of Giving event on March 27, 2019. This event raised #13,535,396.81 for the university with the College of Humanities and Social Sciences, which the Center is a part of, raising $345,232.56 total. To learn more about our funding and giving, please visit our giving page.

The next Networking Alliance meeting takes place October 18, 2019. For more information regarding our advisory council, please visit our Networking Alliance page.