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Next Leadership 
Team Meeting

Sunday, Apr. 14

starting at 1 p.m.

About Us

Save Georgia's Hemlocks, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, is a rapidly growing grassroots organization of energetic individuals with diverse backgrounds, interests, ages, and origins, united by a common purpose to save the hemlocks.  We began our efforts in July 2009 with a large goal -- to serve all of north Georgia where  the woolly adelgid is a serious threat.  With the help of many volunteers and partners, we have made remarkable progress since then, but there is still much to do to protect and preserve as many of these valuable trees as possible for the benefit of everything that depends on them and everyone who loves them. 

As an organization, SGH is characterized by a proactive approach to caring for the environment, a culture of inquiry and independent thinking, appreciation of diversity, respect and transparency in all our interactions, creativity and results-oriented hands-on engagement, conservative financial practices, and high ethical standards.

Please join us!  There are many different ways to get involved -- a little or a lot.  We invite you to visit our How You Can Help page to find your special role in this important cause, use your time and talents to serve in meaningful ways that will have a positive effect for years to come, and share the fun.

Check our Schedule of Events page and then contact us at the Hemlock Help Line 706-429-8010 to let us know of your interest. 


 

Mission -- SAVE GEORGIA'S HEMLOCKS is a volunteer, 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization of concerned citizens dedicated to saving endangered hemlocks through education and charitable service.

Vision -- Through our efforts of preservation, conservation and restoration, there will be a healthy population of hemlocks in Georgia for future generations.

Guiding Principles -- These are the guiding principles under which our nonprofit organization operates.

   Do all for the benefit of property owners and their hemlocks with no benefit accruing to any participant.

   Operate in the most efficient, cost-effective manner, adhering to nonprofit standards of excellence and best practices.

   Do all with simplicity, transparency, and the spirit of charitable service.

We are a fiscally conservative 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization and promise to use your gifts very carefully.  Our budgetary goal is to keep overhead expenses to 20% or less in order to devote 80% or more of our resources to clearly defined program activities; however, our actual performance for FY 2009 - 2023 has averaged 90% for education and charitable service and 10% for overhead.  Our books are open to public inspection upon request.

It is our intention to keep the organization lean, proactive, community-based, and uncomplicated.  We welcome all individuals and groups who share our vision to save north Georgia's hemlocks for this and future generations.  Click here to meet our SGH Leadership Team (updated 1/23/24).


 

Goals -- To achieve our mission and vision, our Hemlock Help Program focuses on three goals:

 ■  Educate -- Enhance public awareness of the hemlock woolly adelgid crisis, current practical options and emerging control technologies, and the aesthetic, economic and environmental reasons to take timely and effective action to save the hemlocks.
 

 ■  Enable -- Ensure easy access to sound hemlock-specific instruction, advice regarding economical solutions, and availability of necessary resources.
 

 ■  Engage -- Enlist our volunteers to provide direct assistance to property owners, nonprofits, and public land managers.

Objectives

Our Program Description (updated 8/26/22) sets forth the problem statement, program goals and objectives, services and scope, and implementation plan.  To learn more about the features of the program, how to use the services, and how to participate as an individual or group, please visit the Hemlock Help page.

   Education -- Provide educational resources, programs, and activities that reach and benefit members, volunteers, and a wide range of constituencies in support of saving the hemlocks. 

   Communications -- Develop messaging materials and methods that raise awareness, provide accurate and up-to-date information and instructions, and respond to requests for advice and assistance. 

   Service - Treatment -- Manage service activities to enable property owners to do as much as possible for themselves as possible and to deliver direct volunteer assistance on private and public lands as our resources permit.

   Service - Saplings -- Maintain distributed nurseries of healthy hemlock seedlings and saplings and conduct service activities to promote the planting and care of new hemlocks on public and private lands. 

   Membership & Partnership -- Create and nurture relationships with individuals and other like-minded organizations to support achievement of our shared goals and objectives, multiply our ability to educate and serve, and provide future leadership.

   Financial Management -- Provide appropriate guidelines, oversight, and management of financial resources, records, and risk.

   Administration -- Manage business aspects of the organization to ensure effective and efficient operation and compliance with applicable authorities.


 

Steady Progress for 15 years!

The years since 2009 have been an exciting and productive journey with the level of awareness about our threatened hemlocks continuing to rise and so many wonderful people coming forward to join the battle to save the trees.  Our momentum and membership have grown substantially, and we expect that trend to continue.

FY 2023 -- Below are the highlights of our activities through December 31, 2023. 

   All 19 HWA-infested native hemlock counties in Georgia served by our Hemlock Help Program

   Hemlock Help Line available 7 days a week with 477 calls handled

   4 Hemlock Help Clinics with 30 attendees

   3 Facilitator Training Workshops with 17 new Facilitators trained
Total active Facilitators = 430 in Georgia and 94 in other states

   8 presentations for 150 adults

   1 Hemlock Lesson for 222 students and 2 teachers

   1 customized training session for 11 volunteers and public land managers

   14 festivals with 88 volunteers and 3,598 visitors

   5 articles / news items written by, with the assistance of, or about SGH published in newspapers/magazines

   68 Facilitator visits made with charitable treatment of 7,600 trees

   17 hemlock treatment projects with 275 volunteers treating/retreating 8,462 trees

   2 sapling rescue projects with 12 volunteers, 125 saplings rescued and potted for use in educational / service activities or future adoption

   141 hemlock saplings adopted; 68 saplings donated to agencies / schools / nonprofits

   5 hemlock sapling planting projects with 22 volunteers

    7 soil injectors repaired/refurbished

   Total of 5,327 volunteer hours logged

   Spending Ratio for 2023:   25.11% Education, 51.27% Charitable Service, 23.62% Admin.

   Cumulative Spending Ratio 2009 - 2023:  41.22% Education, 48.27% Charitable Service, 10.43% Admin.

FY 2009 - 2023 -- Please see the Archives page.    


 

Proactive Plans for the Future

The next few years are likely to be the "tipping point" for the hemlocks in Georgia, and there is much to do!  With the adelgid's prolific reproduction rate and the limited financial and manpower resources facing our public land managers, the hemlocks are at a major disadvantage.  Private property owners and volunteers will play an important role in the very survival of the species.

In FY 2024 we are pursuing an aggressive schedule to offer educational events in all our program counties, continue our support of the U. S. Forest Service and Georgia DNR hemlock treatment projects, increase our focus on partnerships, expand our distributed hemlock sapling nurseries, and do more projects for hemlock restoration on trout streams and other public lands.  Special focus for 2024 will include:

   More outreach in northwestern counties, the Atlanta area, and neighboring states

   More hemlock treatment with the paddling community on the Chattooga River corridor and DNR waterways

   More hemlock restoration on trout streams and other public lands

   More sapling nurseries and the addition of Carolina hemlocks seedlings

   More partnerships with environmental, conservation, and other like-minded organizations

Please see the Schedule of Events page for details.


 

Meetings

SGH Leadership Team meetings are held quarterly, usually on the second Sunday of the calendar quarter.  We welcome the participation of all interested parties.  We also ask that all of our Lead Facilitators join us for each of these quarterly meetings because as the scope of our programs expands, your input and participation will be more important than ever.

Our next Leadership Team meeting is scheduled for Sunday, April 14, 2024 beginning at 1:00 p.m. and will be conducted in person at the Lumpkin County Chamber of Commerce, 342 Hill Street, Dahlonega.  The agenda will be posted here prior to each meeting, and notes will be posted here following each one.  For meeting notes from prior years, please see the Archives page.
 

   1-7-24 Meeting Agenda

   1-7-24 Meeting Notes

 


 

Organizing Documents and Reports

   Notice of Incorporation

   Articles of Incorporation

   Bylaws as amended 1-7-24, including policies for:
   Attachment A: Conflict of Interest
   Attachment B: Donor Privacy
   Attachment C: Document Management
   Attachment D: Whistleblower Protection

   Nondiscrimination (p. 12 of Bylaws)

   IRS 501(c)(3) Letter of Determination (tax-exempt status)

    GA Annual Corporate Registration 2024

   Live Plant License 2024

   Business License

 

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Save Georgia's Hemlocks 2009-2024. 
Send comments or questions by e-mail  or call the Hemlock Help LineSM  706-429-8010.