Appalachia Georgia Friends of the Bears Inc

A nonprofit organization

$100 raised by 2 donors

1% complete

$10,000 Goal

Appalachia Georgia Friends of the Bears’ mission is to reduce Human-Bear conflict through proactive educational outreach programs, increasing public awareness about coexisting with the American Black Bears, the use of humane bear deterrents, and advocacy.

The Appalachia Georgia Friends of the Bears was started by Gerald & Connie Hodge on June 03, 2019, after a part-time resident pleaded for help in reporting a Black Bear road-kill on Georgia Highway 515 in Cherry Log, Georgia the previous day. 

In November 2016, Gerald met Connie and as they got to know each other they discovered they shared an interest in the Black Bears.  Connie had been a Facebook follower and supporter of the Appalachian Bear Rescue in Townsend, Tennessee for several years.

The months went by and as their love for each other grew, so did their love and knowledge of the Black Bears.  Vacationing and ultimately living in Bear Country they frequently caught them on game cameras, saw signs, and unfortunately, road-kill motivated them to learn more about their habitat, habits, and Human-Bear conflict.  As their knowledge grew, they began to share information with others and advocate on their behalf.  Gerald and Connie were married in November 2018.

On Sunday morning, June 02, 2019, Gerald stood in his church clothes beside Georgia Highway 515 on the southbound shoulder near Joann Sisson Road while the traffic rocketed by going back toward Atlanta.  He had answered the lady’s desperate plea on a community message board about a Black Bear cub road-kill.  “What a waste,” he said aloud to myself.  It was a male Black Bear Yearling.  June is Black Bear family breakup time and he had his freedom and a chance to be independent for about one week.  After a relatively sleepless night, Gerald and Connie decided to formally begin a non-profit that would educate and advocate for the Black Bears in Appalachia Georgia.

Below is their 2022 report to themselves and others! The fight and advocacy for our Appalachia Georgia American Black Bears will never end!

Organization Data


Organization name

Appalachia Georgia Friends of the Bears Inc

Tax id (EIN)



Education Environment Animals


PO BOX 2326


(770) 904-9578

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