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Community Impact
Meet the Money celebrates and elevates nonprofit organiztions

The Melbourne Regional Chamber’s Nonprofit Council recently hosted it’s newest signature event, “Meet the Money (Learn the Secrets to Getting Fully Funded).” Designed to raise the bar in development, training and recognition available for nonprofit agencies, Meet the Money provides an interactive, experiential venue that would support the financial sustainability of nonprofit organizations and build collaborations with the business community throughout the Space Coast and beyond.

More than 100 agencies attended the inaugural event, held July 23, 2019 at Eastern Florida State College’s new Student Union at the Melbourne campus. These agencies represented services that spanned from health care, emergency services, mental health, rehabilitation, infant, adolescent and adult services, to homelessness, sports, education, veteran services, religious affiliations, animal welfare, arts and culture and conservation. Virtually anything and everything that contributes to the improved quality of life and exceptional communities on the Space Coast and beyond was in attendance. The event was sponsored by Clary Construction and Champion Home Health Care.

The Chamber innovated this event by providing a collaborative, tracked learning environment via breakout sessions, meaningful networking and an expert panel discussion, rather than the traditional academics of nonprofit management. Participants gained information through myth-busting conversations, interactive sessions and activity-driven outcomes. As a result, attendees encompassing nonprofit management, staff, board and volunteers, reported that they gained knowledge, resources and introductions needed to support growth.

“We wanted to get away from the ‘academics’ of nonprofit management and provide current, real-world solutions to the issues that impede growth and affect funding,” said Jeannette Kraar, a renowned business strategist and Chair of the Melbourne Regional Chamber’s Nonprofit Council, who set the objectives for the conference. “We also wanted to raise the visibility of nonprofit organizations, and to build relationships and opportunities for collaborations between nonprofits, funders and the business community.”

Participants said they benefitted from the innovative format. “This was by far the best Chamber event I have attended,” said Julie Boynton, Brevard Public Partnership public relations manager. “The Mission to Money workshop had great information on how to hone your nonprofit’s story, and ways to find and reach people in a better way. I’ll be back next year!”

In a surprise lottery, nine out of the 100 agencies that attended received cash prizes ranging from $500 to $1,500 in unrestricted funds, thanks to the Brevard business community raising over $7,000 in just six weeks. Dubbed the ROI Campaign for Community Partnerships in Support of 501(c)(3) agencies, the surprise donations enhanced the event. In addition, a $10,000 media package was awarded by Everythingbrevard.com and Brevard Business News gifted over $5,000 in ad space.

Meet the Money 2020 planning is in the works, and the June date will be available soon. For more information, visit www.melbourneregionalchamber.com.