Giving Back Program


NC NENA Gives Back!  An Idea is Born!


Giving Back Program Update:

Newly introduced at the January 2012 Chapter Meeting, our Giving Back Program will now focus on collecting monetary donations at each meeting that will be used to support our various charitable donations throughout the year including the Food Bank and Toys for Tots programs.  Monetary donations of any amount are welcome and appreciated.  For each $5 donated at a Chapter Meeting the donor will receive a ticket to be entered into a drawing for door prizes during the meeting.  The Chapter also welcomes donations of door prizes so that our donated money goes where it is needed most. Thank you in advance for participating and truly giving back!


The Giving Back Program was suggested, discussed and born at the North Carolina NENA Board Retreat October 28-30, 2009 at Sunset Beach, North Carolina. Have you ever been to bed knowing what hunger really is? Well, most of us haven’t either. These are trying times for so many of our fellow North Carolinians. NC NENA is proud of our Giving Back Program!

There are many 911 centers that are currently giving back to the communities they live and work in. The NC NENA Board decided that we could ask our membership to bring canned goods and non-perishable food items to each meeting and those items would be distributed to counties in need of help during these hard economic times. While we were discussing this, Region E Representative Topper Hightower researched and found that Scotland County had the highest rate of unemployment in North Carolina. The group decided that they would be the first recipients of donations from our November 2009 meeting in Rowan County.   The response from the North Carolina NENA and APCO members was overwhelming. Everyone that donated was given a raffle ticket for a chance to win a prize. Brenda Hewlett (NC NENA Secretary) delivered the food to the Scotland County Food Bank. The NC APCO Board asked if they could partner with us in this endeavor. We were happy to know that everyone was so willing to give back!

In January 2010 we asked for donations of food again. In doing some additional research Brenda Hewlett found that there were poverty levels of 20% in each of nine counties in the eastern part of the state. Duplin County was one of those nine counties and Brenda delivered the food collected to the Duplin County Food Bank. Marsha Withrow, Charlotte Fire Communications and NC APCO Immediate Past President, related that she had placed a box in her 911 Communications Center and had received a box full of non-perishable goods from her communications staff. At the January 2010 meeting Marsha challenged all member directors and managers to do the same.

The food collections in March 2010 went to the Robeson County Food Bank. Thank you to Donna Wright (NC NENA Region D Representative) for making that delivery. Extra canned goods that were collected were donated to the Greensboro Food Bank.

The May donations were delivered to the Hertford County Food Bank by Ronnie Barefoot (NC NENA Region A Representative) and Ed Conran (NC APCO Region A Ambassador).

The July 2010 donations were delivered to The Hope Station in Wilson by Brenda Hewlett.

Prior to the September meeting the NC NENA and NC APCO Boards agreed to switch things up a little. We decided to collect toys for the US Marine Corps Toys for Tots Program. This was a huge hit. We collected toys at the conference and they were boxed up until the November 2010 meeting in Greensboro. We had also collected money at the conference from members and vendors alike. Board members had a wonderful time selecting something for all age groups during a shopping trip the night before the November 2010 meeting. United States Marine Corps SSGT Going attended the November meeting in Greensboro and accepted all of the toys and money that had been collected. They were so appreciative of our donation. SSGT Going had several “Elves” with him to assist with loading.

Thus is the history of NC NENA and NC APCO’s effort to make a difference in our communities throughout the state. We plan to continue this initiative for many years to come and invite you to come to a future meeting and remember your donation for Giving Back! Information is sent out before each meeting as to what is being collected. Thanks to each and every one who has contributed and we thank you ahead of time for the donations that you will make in the future! We can all make a difference!