by Cheryl Ackerman

Who is part of the SENG community? What else might we provide for them?

As President of SENG, I often wonder how far our community extends and how our organization touches people in different ways. I never doubt that what SENG does is valuable, that the work we do is important, and that we meet a need in the gifted community. However, I have to step back sometimes to consider this amidst all of the more mundane, albeit necessary, tasks for which I am responsible. So, when I asked Stacey Lind, our Programs and Office Manager, to put together SENG’s inaugural Annual Report to highlight our accomplishments in 2005, I was excited to see the organization’s work consolidated in a brief format.

I was not surprised at some of the information the report included (mission, strategic plan, program accomplishments), but there was information that I was amazed to see. For example, SENG has an average of 600 people visit our website each day! People come to read the articles in the Articles Library we are always expanding, see what research SENG has sponsored, download our brochures, see what the latest information about the upcoming conference is, participate in our Community Forums, and learn about The Misdiagnosis of Gifted Children DVD.

I also had no idea that we had so many people subscribing to the Update and that recipients continue to increase dramatically.

  • As of January 2006, over 3700 people were receiving our newsletter!
  • As of June 2006 it is now up to 4400!
  • They represent all 50 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico, and
  • 53 countries on 6 continents!

This is truly outstanding! SENG is providing a valuable source of information and a community for so many people around the world. For those of you who have been able to attend our annual conference, you know how important it is to find people with whom you can connect, share experiences, and learn. While it is not the same as “being there,” our website, newsletter and Community Forums have afforded large numbers of people a way to create community.

I have to admit that I go the SENG website almost everyday. I check to see if we have received more donations since eachdonor’s name is added to our website to thank them for their support. What I see on our website reminds me that there is so much more to do to achieve our goal to increase our services. So far this year, we have received contributions from fewer than 60 people. I send out my most grateful thanks to each who has donated recently. I send out my most heartfelt request to those of you who have not supported us of late. When I consider the number of people who subscribe to our newsletter, and that if each of you contributed only $10 to SENG, we would raise $44,000, I can’t help but imagine what we could do with this money.

If you had an extra $44,000 to spend on supporting the emotional needs of the gifted, what would you do with it? The nice thing about donating to SENG is that you can think about how you want your money used and tell us when you make your donation. Do you want to support scholarships to the conference or making the full-length documentary on misdiagnosis? Have a look around our website, if you haven’t done so lately, and choose where you want your contribution to go. Alternatively, have a look around the SENG website and then let us decide how your contribution could best be used to support our mission. I am certain that a look at our 2005 Annual Report will help you see that SENG is doing a great deal for the gifted community and that you can be proud to be a part of it.

You are why we are here. You can help us help even more people. Become more involved in the SENG community. We’re counting on your support!

Cheryl Ackerman is SENG’s President, Chair of the Conceptual Foundations Division of NAGC, and Rowan’s proud mom. This is her fourth year on the SENG Board.

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