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Leadership TriCounty- November

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Posted on Monday, May 2, 2022
By: Hailey Heimbach
Categories: General

Leadership TriCounty November Session


Our November meeting focused on Non-Profits within the area, as well as the possibility of serving on their board or volunteering our time and resources.

We began with a bus ride over to the Pottstown Cluster of Religious Communities in Pottstown, where we met Jacqui Good, Director of Development & Communications.  We were able to tour their food bank, see the operation and understand how they serve the community of seniors, homeless and college students. It was quite impressive to see their computer system to order food.  Many in the class brought donations.

The class went back to our home base at the Montgomery County Community College South Hall, where we had a virtual tour of the Developmental Enterprises Corporation, DEC, and met Tammie Reimer, DEC’s Pottstown’s Facility Director.  Tammie explained the operation, as well as introduced us to clients who explained what they were working on. Individuals with Downs Syndrome and ID diagnosis will go to DEC to learn skills for employment.  DEC has 5 training centers located in Berks, Chester, Philly, Norristown, and Pottstown.  Most clients work 3 days per week and get paid $15/day.  Costs to work with each client are approximately $53, 000/year/adult.

The class then discussed Non-Profits and being part of a board. The discussion included recruiting leaders, time commitments, special skills, experience, and the on-boarding process.

Next, we virtually met Holly Parker, the Executive Director of The TriCounty Community Network, TCN.  Holly was on vacation but called in to share information about TCN through Zoom.  TCN started in 1993 and they provide support for non-profit organizations. They are a community connector, by partnering with non-profits to help solve health, transportations, workforce, community issues, and help fund organizations to help them get started.  They provide youth engagement, community education, Covid information, and help non-profits to develop partnerships.  Holly pointed out that most non-profits experience challenges such as funding, sustainability, partnerships, and running like a business. They created the Amazing Raise within town to help the non-profits. They helped 50-60 non-profits with $777,000/last year.

Following our call with Holly, a panel of non-profit leaders joined us.

·Jennifer Anderson, Executive Director of Trellis for Tomorrow in Phoenixville- an employment program to help youth (ages 13-18) prepare for future careers. 

·Bryan Parks, Executive Director of TriCounty Active Adult Center in Pottstown- a center for seniors to receive exercise, fitness, social events, free lunches, and support. 

·Daniel Price, Executive Director of MOSAIC Community Land Trust in Pottstown – a program that acquires vacant land and buildings to build community gardens. Their 105 plots produce 6000 lbs. of produce for the community. 

·David Charles, President of The Strive Initiative, Inc. in Pottstown- this program connects community adults to tutor and mentor middle school children to succeed with goals, academics, and friendship. 

The panel explained their best practices for their non-profits include valuing their employees, keeping an eye on customer service, be authentic and let those better than you do their job.  Don’t think of your organization as a non-profit but rather as “for purpose.”   They also discussed the on-boarding process for their board members must include clarity of the work involved, providing job descriptions and whether it is a government vs. a working board. 

The class discussed “Volunteers” and the reasoning for volunteering. Volunteers are looking to fill time, are searching for purpose, seeking professional development, looking for connections, and they desire to give back.  Engaged volunteers are the most loyal ambassadors of an organization.  We discussed the 3 keys to engagement are:

1. Connection

2. Value

3. Retention

Board members usually begin as volunteers. Small teams serve big communities. 

This Leadership Class experience was eye-opening to the non-profits within the community, as well as to understand that the leaders within the community often are the ones that give back their time, resources, and skills to these non-profit organizations.  This class is training us to be leaders, and it is our responsibility to lead by example and give back to our community by volunteering and/or serving on a board.


Written by: Alice Funk, Leadership TriCounty Class of 2022 

Tagged:General, Information, Chamber, Leadership TriCounty

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TriCounty Area Chamber of Commerce

152 East High Street, Suite 200
Pottstown, PA 19464

Phone: 610.326.2900