January Happenings in the Junior League

by Shanna Lisberg

There are 293 chapters of the Junior League throughout Canada, Mexico, the United Kingdom, and the United States whose mission is to promote volunteerism and develop the potential of women. We all know how the Junior League of Seattle promotes the mission statement, but what about the rest of the League? Here’s what some of those other chapters have been up to in the past month:

  • At the January 14 Lodi Unified School District board meeting, the Junior League of San Joaquin County donated funds to purchase iPads and accessories for a first and third grade class. The Junior League partnered with the Crete Family Foundation, which issued a matching grant, to make this possible.
  • The Junior League of Columbia kicked off its 90th anniversary year by announcing the recipients of its first-ever Community Enrichment Grant program. The JLC awarded $160,000 in onetime enrichment grants to local nonprofits supporting the JLC mission, vision or current focus area of healthy children.
  • The Junior League of Sarasota hosted a night of painting, wine, and fun with their charity event Painting with a Purpose. The event consisted of a two hour painting session, where participants were able to complete a painting to take home.
  • The Huntington Junior League kicked off a month-long food drive in January to benefit the Huntington Area Food Bank. The Junior League and the Huntington Area Food Bank are working together to collect cans of soup to be distributed to Tri-State Area food pantries and soup kitchens.
  • The Junior League of Central Westchester held a Family Game Night to help benefit Heartsong, Inc. in White Plains. Heartsong is a creative arts therapy facility for those with special needs. Families that attended the game night were asked to bring toys, books, and games to be donated to Heartsong.
  • The Junior League of Pueblo hosted a Kids Health Challenge Fit4Fun event at the Pueblo Mall for kids and teens. There were plenty of activities for kids to engage in, including Minute-to-Win-It games, hula hoop and jump rope contests, zumba, and yoga.

January is Human Trafficking Awareness Month. Many Junior League chapters focused on raising awareness by taking part in a variety of human trafficking awareness events to combat modern day slavery.

  • Junior League members throughout the state of New Jersey worked with the Junior Leagues of New Jersey State Public Affairs Committee to raise awareness and fight human trafficking in preparation of the Super Bowl.
  • The Junior League of Portland presented a documentary made by the JLP titled Waiting for the Light: Portland’s Sex Trafficking Crisis to a packed theater. The documentary focuses on child sex trafficking in Portland and attendees heard from a distinguished panel of speakers that sought to raise new awareness of the issue and provide tools and ideas about how citizens can help fight sex trafficking.
  • The Junior League of Daytona Beach hosted a public seminar at Embry Riddle Aeronautical University that included guest speakers from The Florida Coalition Against Human Trafficking and the Orlando Police Department.
  • The Junior League of Birmingham held a Community Round Table Luncheon to discuss the issue of human trafficking in Alabama. Several panelists were present including four representatives from the FBI, the Alabama Fusion Center, the WellHouse and the Alabama State Legislature.
  • The Junior League of Portland is currently holding their Second Annual Delicates Drive to collect new undergarments for survivors of human trafficking. Last year, the Delicates Drive collected approximately 1417 bras and underwear and $1,189 worth of gift cards.
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