When a few dozen 20- and 30-somethings recently formed a group called NextExecs, an outgrowth of the Greater Bethesda-Chevy Chase Chamber of Commerce, they thought they wanted to do a little networking and focus on professional development.

It didn’t take long for organizers to agree on another mission: giving back.

At a recent happy hour at Caddie’s on Cordell in Bethesda, the group raised $1,100 for its annual Goodwill gala. It was the group’s first event.

“Because of the economy, young people are very ambitious to get out and network, but the idea of charitable work and helping people less fortunate was one that really resonated,” said Heather Dlhopolsky, a NextExecs member and associate at Linowes and Blocher.

Leaders say they will plan two major fundraisers each year to support the dinner which raises money for transitional housing organizations like National Center for Families and Children and A Wider Circle. This year’s event will be Dec. 12.