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November 2021 Newsletter

Message from the President

Greetings and Happy November! 
With the weather changing and the holidays around the corner, the Junior League of Tallahassee (JLT) has many exciting updates we hope you will participate in! 
 

October was full of fall events, volunteer shifts, and preparation for the Junior League of Tallahassee’s Sixth Annual Little Black Dress Initiative (LBDI). Starting THIS Monday, November 15, dozens of our Leaguers and community leaders will wear the same black dress for five consecutive days. This is not a fashion statement or a minimalist challenge. LBDI is a chance to start a conversation about food insecurity and poverty in our community. The Leon County child food insecurity rate is 17.6%, which is almost 10,000 children in our area who do not know where their next meal will come from. This is one of the many reasons our Junior League members are mobilized to fix this unacceptable statistic. 

Last year we had an indescribable LBDI week and we hope to continue our momentum in 2021! Every dollar raised during this week goes directly back into our community through our community partners and projects like Kids’ Boutique and Mighty Meals. Wearing the same black dress or outfit all week is meant to be an outward reminder of the tough choices our neighbors face regularly, as well as a catalyst for conversations.  The fact so many women and friends of JLT are motivated to lead not by a quest for power, but by a cause they believe in is one component of the case for women’s leadership and non-profit impact. So when you see that email ask hit your inbox on Monday or see LBDI social media posts on your news feed, I invite you to support her in her mission, for it is one of great importance. The Junior League of Tallahassee has a rich history of 61 years of showing up for our community, acting out our mission, and, with your help, we will have a very bright future taking our service to the next level of impacting the lives of women and families for many years to come. 


Yours In Service, 
Katie Britt Williams
JLT President 2021-2022

Where's your Little Black Dress?
Sixth Annual LBDI kicks off Nov. 15! 

 Advocates spark conversation among colleagues, friends, and strangers to raise awareness about how poverty and food insecurity affects our neighbors and community. 

The purpose of this event is simple:
1 Dress + 5 Days = HUGE Community Impact!

Food insecurity describes a household’s inability to provide enough food for every person to live an active, healthy life. The dress (or outfit) represents the percentage of people in Leon County who are food insecure, with a large focus on that population with children. 

The number of children locally who go to bed without food is astounding, and part of our mission is to raise awareness and funds to assist in providing meals and bridging the gap. 

 

How to support LBDI?


“Most people don’t know how deeply poverty and hunger impact this region; the stats are shocking, but they serve to amplify and call attention to issues we are helping to solve,” said Alexis Simoneau, Funding Director of JLT. “Every penny from the campaign serves the community and the projects we do.”
 
Our League’s goal is to raise $45,000 to be used to directly impact our
community partners and every little bit helps! 
JLT Voted Best Non-Profit Organization

The votes are in! Thank you to everyone who voted the Junior League of Tallahassee 2021 Best Non-Profit. We’re honored and grateful for the recognition!
 
JLT has been committed to serving our community and improving the lives of children and families in the Big Bend for 61 years. See all the Best of Tallahassee winners and learn more about our members and mission [pages 86-87] in Tallahassee Magazine's latest issue

Ghouls Just Want to Have Fun

JLT members brought the Halloween excitement to our Jill Pope Community Partners this month with festive celebrations. At Big Bend Homeless Coalition’s HOPE Community, members hosted a fall festival complete with costumes, carnival games, and lots of candy and prizes to go around. 
 
At Capital City Youth Services (CCYS), volunteers decorated cars for a spook-takular trunk-or-treat featuring yummy treats and fun games for the teens. Thank you to all our wonderful volunteers who are making the holidays safe and fun for children and teens in our community!
 
Learn more about JLT’s Community Partnership Program on our website

Celebrating and Empowering Women & Girls
 

JLT members had a great time volunteering at the 11th Annual Celebration of Women & Girls hosted by The Oasis Center for Women & Girls. This unique event showcased female artistic talent of all ages. Volunteers assisted with check-in, food, and the live auction while enjoying inspirational music, poetry, dance, art, and comedy from women and girls in our community. Proceeds from the event support the mission and programming for The Oasis Center, which focuses on improving the lives of women and girls through celebration and support.
 
Volunteers participated in this event through JLT’s Done in a Day (DIAD) program. If you have a short-term volunteer need that ties in with the JLT’s mission, you can learn more and fill out an application on our website.

JLT Packs Food Backpacks for Children

Second Harvest of the Big Bend food bank feeds hungry children, adults, families, and seniors in 11 counties of the Big Bend through their network of 135 partner agencies. JLT is proud to partner with Second Harvest and support their work in our community. The work is about more than moving food. It’s about making families whole again – making sure kids have the food they need to learn in school, relieving the stress of an empty cupboard for parents, or giving seniors a little bit more so they can stretch their dollars every month. 

This month, JLT members packed 1,000 backpacks of food to be distributed to students in our community. Visit fightinghunger.org to learn more about how volunteers are working to alleviate food insecurity in our community.

Eldercare Services Oktoberfest

Prost! JLT volunteers helped out at the 23rd Annual Elder Care Services Oktoberfest at Cascades Park featuring German food, music, and local craft beer. Proceeds from the event support underfunded Elder Care programs. 
 
Elder Care Services works to improve the quality of life for seniors and their caregivers in the Big Bend. They provide community-based, compassionate care for a broad spectrum of seniors. Each year, over 3,000 seniors and their families receive help from Elder Care Services. Learn more about Elder Care Services at eldercarebigbend.org.

Hole in One!
The Junior League of Tallahassee (JLT) is excited to announce registration has opened for the 6th Annual JLT Golf Classic. This fun and exciting tournament will once again be hosted at Southwood Golf Club on Friday, March 25, 2022.

Early bird registration has opened, so register before December 15, 2021, and save!
Sponsorships are available to put your company in front of hundreds of Tallahassee’s finest. Contact golf chairs, Candace Yeager & Kerin Clarke, for more details at golftournament@jltallahassee.org
Let's Talk About DACA
This month, JLT’s Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Committee hosted a lecture and discussion about immigration policy and Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA). Many thanks to Daniela Donoso, Equal Justice Works Fellow with Legal Services of North Florida, for leading this informative training. 

The Junior League of Tallahassee believes diversity and inclusion allow us to fully leverage the talents and skills of all members. It is our priority to have a membership that reflects the rich diversity of the communities it serves. We are committed to promoting equal opportunity by welcoming and valuing the unique backgrounds and perspectives of all members; while promoting an environment of respect where authentic and empowered participation and a true sense of belonging are a priority.
Training Our Next Generation
JLT’s Teen Board is off to an amazing start! In October, the Teen Board committee hosted its first of many training meetings for the juniors and seniors high school students who form Teen Board. The training focused on learning general information about JLT but also provided tools on how to set and achieve goals. We are looking forward to more learning, volunteering, and mentoring opportunities this year. 
Learn more about JLT’s Teen Board on our website
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Our mailing address is:
PO Box 13428 Tallahassee, FL 32317

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