Hello Neighbor Network prepares for its largest class of nonprofit leaders

In 2022, the Network, powered by Hello Neighbor, will support the development of an additional 60+ nonprofits nationwide to cultivate communities of belonging

December 8, 2021

In 2022, the Hello Neighbor Network will welcome its largest class of nonprofit leaders including 22 Hello Neighbor Network Fellows, some of whom are among the 60 grantees of the Mobilizing America for Refugees Fund who will also join a Network-led learning collaborative.

Powered by Hello Neighbor, the Hello Neighbor Network supports nonprofits nationwide during the most challenging time of their development during which 30-50% of small businesses and nonprofits fail. Through a unique Fellowship program and the upcoming collaboration with the Mobilizing America for Refugees Fund, the Network will provide peer support, education, resources, and funding to over 60 young nonprofits across the nation.

Community-based nonprofits, in particular, make a substantial impact in their cities and neighborhoods. The Network’s 2019 national research study showed that 92% of refugees with children felt their children had more access to opportunities after working with one of our Network organizations. 100% of refugees felt their organization created a more inclusive community and 92% of volunteers felt their organization reduced polarization.

2022 Network Fellows:

The incoming class of 22 Hello Neighbor Network Fellows, across 14 states, will participate in a 10-month intensive leadership program in the interest of furthering their organizations’ missions supporting immigrants and refugees. These Fellows join an existing group of 23 members for professional development, regrant opportunities, a national convening, and ongoing support as they undertake independent projects to grow and strengthen their organizations.

Basma Alawee, Founder of Weavetales will join as a 2022 Fellow. She says:

“As the founder of a nonprofit organization and a former refugee myself, I am looking forward to connecting with other nonprofits to learn from their experiences and knowledge and to share mine with others as well. I have heard inspiring stories from other founders and executive directors who joined the network and I am interested in being part of this movement and part of this story to create a neighborhood where we all feel welcome and belong.”

A total of 22 leaders and organizations join the Network next month:

  • Shoshana Akabas, New Neighbors Partnership (New York, NY)
  • Basma Alawee, Weavetales (Jacksonville, FL)
  • Jamil Djibril Bah-Traore, Eat N Talk Africa (Omaha, NE)
  • Barry Brown, NorthPoint Church (Johnston, IA)
  • Jessica Bueler, Welcome Neighbor STL (St. Louis, MO)
  • Tarah Carnahan, Treetops Collective (Grand Rapids, MI)
  • Leah Cover, Ruth’s Refuge (Brooklyn, NY)
  • Sally El-Sadek, One World One Love (Summit, NJ)
  • Justin Forzano, Open Field (Pittsburgh, PA)
  • Robert Gonzalez, California Immigrants Resources Center (Sacramento, CA)
  • Osuman Issaka, The Simple Foundation (Omaha, NE)
  • Sikandar Khan, Global Emergency Response and Assistance (Paterson, NJ)
  • James Knyawhtoo, Karen Society of Nebraska (Lincoln, NE)
  • Lori Lucchetti, Building Peaceful Bridges (Glenview, IL)
  • Jackie Menter, Orange County Jewish Coalition for Refugees (Santa Ana, CA)
  • Stephanie Moris, Refugee Alliance of Central Iowa (Des Moines, IA)
  • Johnny Ratka Skinner, Valley Neighbors (Kalispell, MT)
  • Kelly Ross, ECHO Collective (Lincoln, NE)
  • Nasibu Sareva, African Development Center (Minneapolis, MN)
  • Michele Suffridge, Refugee Hope Partners (Raleigh, NC)
  • Kate Thoene, The Welcome to America Project (Tempe, AZ)
  • Hannah Wyble, Restoring Dignity (Omaha, NE)

In addition to professional development sessions, peer support, and an annual convening scheduled for June 7-9, 2021 in Pittsburgh, Network Fellows have access to regrant opportunities that leverage national funding commitments in local communities. In 2021, the Network partnered to distribute over $100,000 in funding through its Regrant Program.

Mobilizing America for Refugees Learning Collaborative:

Yesterday, the Schultz Family Foundation, Stand Together Foundation, The Starbucks Foundation, and Hello Neighbor also announced the recipients of the Mobilizing America for Refugees Fund, which was created with the goal of engaging 10,000+ American volunteers to help resettle their new Afghan Neighbors. Collectively, the four organizations have invested $1.3 million to support 60 community-based organizations in 32 states with Afghan resettlement efforts.

Community-based organizations receiving support from the Mobilizing America for Refugees Fund are tapping into the goodwill of everyday Americans to welcome their new neighbors. An interactive map includes all organizations being supported by the Mobilizing America for Refugees Fund. Some examples of organizations receiving support include:

  • Neighborhood House of Milwaukee (Milwaukee, WI)
  • Globally (Washington, DC)
  • Noor Islamic and Cultural Community Center (Concord, CA)
  • World Learning Inc. (Brattleboro, VT)
  • Integrated Refugee and Immigrant Services (New Haven, CT)
  • Hopeprint, Inc. (Syracuse, NY)
  • Iskashitaa Refugee Network (Tucson, AZ)
  • Global Emergency Response and Assistance (Clifton, NJ)
  • Afghan Health Initiative (Kent, WA)
  • Utah Muslim Civic League (Salt Lake City, UT)

Hello Neighbor will lead a learning collaborative for the 60 organizations and their leaders to support the work of welcome they do in their communities.

“As Hello Neighbor prepares to welcome upwards of 200 Afghans into our local Pittsburgh community, we are delighted to lead welcoming efforts across the nation, in parallel, as a partner of Mobilizing America for Refugees. The Network was founded on the deep belief in the value of grassroots, community-led organizations in welcoming our newest neighbors. Through this partnership we look forward to applying our unique peer-to-peer and educational support model to a learning collaborative of these 60 leaders and organizations ready to be a threshold of welcome for Afghans.” — Sloane Davidson, Founder and CEO, Hello Neighbor

About the Hello Neighbor Network:

Powered by Hello Neighbor, the Network is a coalition of grassroots organizations working in refugee and immigrant resettlement in the U.S. The Hello Neighbor Network is supported by generous partnerships with the Walmart Foundation, the Schultz Family Foundation, USA for UNHCR, The Posner Foundation of Pittsburgh, The Benter Foundation, The Good People Fund, and The Harnisch Foundation to elevate grassroots voices in ongoing conversations about refugee and immigrant inclusion in the U.S. Learn more about the Hello Neighbor Network.

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