Thursday, May 6, 2010

More Than Happy Hour

As co-chairs of the Meet & Greet committee, we’ve had the opportunity to meet some great people doing inspiring work for amazing organizations throughout San Diego. We’ve helped to organize over a dozen events in venues around town, hoping that these mixers would bring nonprofit professionals together to connect and network, but I think we’ve found that it has been more than that.

These ‘mixers’ have also helped YNPN members find jobs, make friends, share resources, gain volunteers and explore new restaurants and bars in town. Our members have learned about organizations in town they never would have heard of otherwise. They met someone who works for an organization they love and happens to live a few blocks from them. They’ve found a shoulder to lean on when work has been hard and had a supportive audience when their goals were achieved. They’ve found people to brunch with and heard a great personal review of a restaurant they’ve been meaning to try. They’ve connected with and created a network of colleagues, on a personal and professional manner.

We hope these events have been more than the typical ‘happy hour’ because when your day has been long and the work has been hard, and when we’re trying to fight the good fight, it often is only other nonprofit professionals who understand how we feel. We have friends, family and significant others who support us and listen to us but talking to another person who understands the daily ins and outs of the nonprofit world can mean so much more. And being able to vent and laugh and tell stories with each other, especially over good food and fun drinks, can make the hard work we do worthwhile.

We have had a great time co-chairing this committee. The venues who have hosted us have gone above and beyond in providing great locations, staff and specials. The committee has worked hard to pull off these events, from finding venues and promoting the events to cheerfully checking in our guests. And our amazing Advisory Board has been so helpful, coming up with new ideas and new venues to keep these events fun and entertaining.

We termed-off the Advisory Board in April, so we will no longer be co-chairs of this committee but will definitely still be involved. We would not want to miss the opportunity to meet more amazing nonprofit professionals working hard to better the San Diego community. Emily Davis will be overseeing the committee and these events will have a new name: Sector Social. We hope that you will continue to make these events the place to meet other nonprofit professionals in this town. And, if you have the time, we’d love you to join the committee to help ensure these events are the best they can be! We have organized these events with you in mind, so please help if you can! With over 500 YNPN members in San Diego, let’s make these events THE place for nonprofit professionals to connect!

Hope to see you very soon!
Lenise Andrade and Emily Bhatti
Former Meet & Greet Co-Chairs &
(Proud) YNPN San Diego members

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