Benefits of being a Network member

The Network is much more than a funder. We put a great deal of care and attention into the dozens of Network members who work with us. Though the benefits of being a Network member aren’t limited to the following, these are some of the common themes we hear from members.

We forge connections

The most common benefit Network members talk about is the ability to connect with other organizations who have similar goals. We help members share resources, expertise and even clients through referrals.

For an organization such as the St. Louis Area Diaper Bank, which partners with dozens of organizations in the region to distribute diapers and period supplies, making these connections is vital.

“About 25 of our partner organizations are also network partners,” Diaper Bank Executive Director Muriel Smith said. “I think that’s a great benefit to having such a large core group of our partners that are working alongside us to distribute diapers and period supplies throughout the community and within the 24:1.”

Many of these connections happen at our networking events or our monthly meetings and trainings. We invite members to the Network building in Wellston where we provide breakfast and generally build around a theme to the meeting. Depending on the theme of that meeting or training, we might have mostly communications and marketing staff from the organizations, or we might mostly have data professionals, or we might have direct service providers.

We foster an environment where attendees can talk with each other and share ideas and make one-on-one connections. In addition to leading these meetings, Network staff members are present to take detailed notes and think about how to help members solve problems or become more efficient. Often, this comes in the form of a follow-up email after the meeting where Network staff connects attendees either with other Network members or even organizations outside the Network that might be able to help.

We provide expert advice and guidance

The Network’s staff has varied experience, from longtime connections in St. Louis County to experience on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C., to expertise doing marketing and communications for nonprofits in the St. Louis region. We also have connections to trusted contractors who can help organizations with videography, photography and more.

As a nonprofit in this area, with so many employees with experience in the field, we understand what services will actually help organizations and the best ways to provide assistance.

“It’s nice to have somebody in the community that understands what we’re doing and what we’re trying to help our families with and provide resources when we can find them,” Parents as Teachers Director of Partnerships and Community Engagement Ann Young said.

We are here to serve

The cornerstone of the Network is service. We listen to community stakeholders, we collaborate with others to craft solutions and we invest our strategic and organizational resources in the work our members are doing.

We are here to be a resource for anything our members need. Even if we’re providing funding for an organization, we go beyond that and make ourselves available for any other needs.

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Alex McCarthy
Alex McCarthy is the Communications Coordinator at the Network. He has worked for the organization since 2022.