GOLD2022

FRIENDS OF THE SAVANNAH COASTAL WILDLIFE REFUGES

Work to make a living, volunteer to make a difference!

Hardeeville, SC   |  www.coastalrefuges.org

Mission

The mission of the Friends of the Savannah Coastal Wildlife Refuges, Inc., a Georgia and South Carolina based non-profit, is to support and advocate for the seven refuges within the Savannah Coastal Wildlife Refuges system and to promote public understanding of the need to protect and preserve wildlife and wildlife habitat.   The two most visited refuges are the Savannah National Wildlife Refuge Visitor Center in Hardeeville and Pinckney Island NWR on the north side of U.S. 278, between the two bridges that connect Hilton Head Island to the mainland.

Ruling year info

2014

President

Matthew Emmer

Main address

694 Beech Hill Lane

Hardeeville, SC 29927 USA

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EIN

26-2009310

NTEE code info

Natural Resource Conservation and Protection (C30)

Primary/Elementary Schools (B24)

Wildlife Preservation/Protection (D30)

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990-N.

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Communication

Programs and results

What we aim to solve

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Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Beech Hill Pavilion at Savannah National Wildlife Refuge

Friends of the Savannah Coastal Wildlife Refuges turned over the key to the newly constructed Pavilion in March 2020, just one week before the refuge was shit down due to the coronavirus pandemic.    This building will provide much-needed instructional space to bring local student and community groups into first-hand contact with the wildlife and wildlife habitat preserved by the Savannah NWR and managed by the US Fish & Wildlife Service. We eagerly await the reopening so that we can utilize this covered space for educational events, meetings, outdoor skills, and other activities for young and old alike.

Population(s) Served
Age groups

The Friends hold numerous nature programs including birding walks, canoe/kayak tours, yearly Savannah Riverboat Cruise on the Savannah River, lectures, and much more.

Population(s) Served
Adults

We staff the information desk at the Savannah National Wildlife Refuge Visitor Center in Hardeeville, SC, and operate the Visitor Center nature and book store located there.

Population(s) Served

The Friends were awarded a generous grant from Community Foundation of the Lowcountry for Pinckney Island NWR Visitor Programs and Accessibility Project. This grant enabled the Friends to purchase a 15-seat electric shuttle, bicycles, binoculars, informational brochures, tables/chairs and improved signage that we could use to provide guided tours of Pinckney Island NWR to those who had limited mobility and difficulty exploring the island on foot. In another example of a public-private partnership involving the Friends, the Foundation, and the Service, there is now expanded programming and access for all visitors including the elderly, very young and mobility impaired. These services are offered without charge to the public. The programs and services include:     Scheduled Programs: Guided nature programs including electric shuttle and bicycle programs     Visitor Services      - Roving docent at key locations   - Water on very hot days      - Pinckney Island NWR visitor information

Population(s) Served
Adults

Where we work

Our Sustainable Development Goals

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

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Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

Friends of the Savannah Coastal Wildlife Refuges is an organization of volunteers from coastal Georgia and South Carolina dedicated to preserving and protecting the seven National Wildlife Refuges in our area. These refuges, managed and protected by the United States Fish and Wildlife Service (US F&WS), are oases of wildness in our midst, and are truly "America's Best Kept Secret". Friends group activities include: working closely with and supporting the efforts of the F&WS staff assigned to our refuges; public outreach and education; fund raising; staffing Visitor Centers and Nature Stores; refuge maintenance and improvement; advocating for the refuges at all levels of government, and much more. Friends of the Savannah Coastal Wildlife Refuges is currently doing a major fund-raising campaign. The Kingfisher Discovery Center Project will be a free-standing classroom adjacent to the Visitor Center on the Savannah National Wildlife Refuge.Phase 1 will be a screened-in pavilion of about 2000 square feet in which classes, labs, and meetings will be held. When sufficient funds become available, the pavilion will be enclosed and provided with climate control. Wet labs and bathroom facilities will be included in Phase 1. This facility will provide much-needed instructional space to bring local student and community groups into first-hand contact with the wildlife and wildlife habitat preserved by the Savannah NWR and managed by the US Fish & Wildlife Service. The entire $200,000 budget for the pavilion phase will be obtained through contributions from individuals, corporations and foundations. After this phase is completed, we will continue to solicit private and federal sources to begin Phase 2. Another goal is to continue our successful shuttle nature tours on Pinckney Island NWR.  We will enhance our tours by providing state-of-the-art mobile phone GPS identification services, Spanish tours, Spanish literature and much more.

Our strategy is to continue what we have been doing, Use the Nature Store profits to support refuge projectsUtilize Community Foundation grant funds to enhance our Pinckney Island Tours and introduce the Hispanic population to nature.Fund raise to construct the Kingfisher Pond Discovery Center to enhance children nature education in the local communities.

Our capabilities include, Extensive mailing list of over 1,000 peopleContinue to make a large profit from selling goods at our Nature Store (on the Savannah Refuge)Continue to collect sufficient donations to run the Pinckney Island Nature ToursContinue to solicit the Community Foundation for grants to expand our Pinckney Island Nature Tours

Progress:We are meeting all criteria as stated above for success therefore goals will be satisfied.

Financials

FRIENDS OF THE SAVANNAH COASTAL WILDLIFE REFUGES
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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

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FRIENDS OF THE SAVANNAH COASTAL WILDLIFE REFUGES

Board of directors
as of 10/28/2022
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board chair

Matthew Emmer

Kris Willaims

Richard Shields

Walter Hoskins

Wasil Khan

Sawyer Matthews

George Wortley

Kathryn Craven

Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? Not applicable

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 10/28/2022

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? Candid partnered with CHANGE Philanthropy on this demographic section.

Leadership

The organization's leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
White/Caucasian/European
Gender identity
Male, Not transgender (cisgender)
Sexual orientation
Heterosexual or straight
Disability status
Person without a disability

Race & ethnicity

No data

Gender identity

 

Sexual orientation

Disability