Executive Director Tina Grubbs said the general public doesn’t fully grasp what the Bartow Collaborative does, but in a nutshell it is about helping the people who actually help, well, people.
“The idea was to build partnerships,” Grubbs said. “As nonprofits we’ve had to figure out how you have to really be administratively savvy and people rely on us to link them.”
Grubbs said the partnership was established to build a network for nonprofits to share resources and use them to improve some services and programs offered to those who have a need.
The pastor of The Bridge United Methodist Church, Eric Lee, said he and his congregation have personally benefitted from the Bartow Collaborative.
“By participating in the Collaborative, we were able to find out about different programs as well as see the needs in our community,” Lee said. “Our community needs the Collaborative so that we can solve the problems that we see. The Collaborative helps bring us together.”
According to data provided by Grubbs, since 1998 the Bartow Collaborative has leveraged more than $400 million to provide start up or expansion funding for more than 25 success programs and services.
Grubbs, who brings with her 20 years in the nonprofit sector, took over the reigns for the Bartow Collaborative less than a year ago and she said she hopes to continue the mission of the organization which ultimately is to be a strong community where all children are successful in school and all families are stable and self-sufficient.
In addition, Bartow Collaborative also organizes community-wide projects such as Bartow Give a Kid a Chance, which collects and distributes school supplies to needy families through its network of organizations.
Bartow Collaborative is accepting donations for Bartow Give a Kid a Chance, which will distribute items later this month.
Grubbs said through efforts such as Bartow Give a Kid a Chance, the nonprofits and faith-based organizations across Bartow County have been able to pool resources for the greater good of the community.
“There’s something really special about this community and it’s willingness to help those in need,” Grubbs said.