The effort to revive the old Northland nonprofit summit meetings to improve delivery of services to those in need is off to a rousing start, according to organizer Jenny Lin.

The effort to revive the old Northland nonprofit summit meetings to improve delivery of services to those in need is off to a rousing start, according to organizer Jenny Lin.

"I thought it went very well," she said the day after the May 4 gathering at the Haimerl Center on Morse Road was attended by more than 20 people.

These included representatives from the Furniture Bank of Central Ohio, St. Francis DeSales High School, Local Matters, World Relief Columbus, Ohio University, Community Refugee and Immigration Services and Xenos Christian Fellowship.

"Everyone was really engaged and ready to do something, hoping we can keep the momentum going," said Lin, who got involved in the Northland community and immigrant health issues while working on her master's degree and as a volunteer at the Helping Hands Health and Wellness Center free clinic.

Joyce Bourgault, who will retire at the end of the month as executive director of the clinic, started holding Northland nonprofit summit meetings in May 2011 as a way of identifying gaps in services as well as developing collaborations.

"We gathered because there seemed to be a need in the community for a lot of the services to share resources and ... to develop resources," Bourgault said at last week's meeting.

Lin is calling the revived group Northland Partners for Opportunity.

The purpose of holding what she anticipates will be the first in a series of meetings, Lin said May 4, is to determine what residents want and need in the way of services, and how individual nonprofits might work together to meet those needs.

"I'm very thrilled that this organization is getting reignited," said Noreen Warnock of Local Matters.

"I'm really glad to see people coming back together," World Relief Columbus office director Kay Lipovsky said.

Emmanuel V. Remy, president of the Northland Community Council, stopped briefly at the meeting to lend his backing to Lin's effort.

"I'm very supportive and very excited that we're doing these things to find gaps in services for the Northland area," he said.

Remy noted that the neighborhood is large in territory and has a significant population of 130,000 people, a growing percentage of them immigrants and refugees from around the world.

"I feel that we're pretty much the melting pot when it comes to Columbus," he said. "We are excited to have this kind of event. It's great to hear that you guys are working hard together. We certainly are all about collaboration."

Much of the meeting was focused on trying to identify a specific issue the group can work on as a whole, and some of the suggestions, Lin said, were transportation and finding a location where international food stores could join together.

"It would be a destination point in Northland like no other destination point in the city," Warnock said.

"Everyone seemed to think that picking one thing to show we can work together was a good idea," Lin said.

Those in attendance tentatively agreed to meet again next month, but Lin said a specific date has not yet been set.