Grants & Scholarships

The Targeted Grants and Volunteer Resources Committee makes a difference in the community through financial and volunteer support of literacy focused programs, contests, and scholarship opportunities.

Targeted Grants

The Targeted Grants and Volunteer Resources Committee evaluates grant applications and makes recommendations for where Junior League of Washington grants will be made to community organizations. Committee members promote the availability of Junior League of Washington grants and how the grant cycle works through outreach efforts to the community. They also review grant applications, conduct site visits with community organizations, and ultimately recommend to the Junior League of Washington membership which literacy-focused organizations to fund. The grant process typically begins in mid-July and grantees will be awarded funds in late spring/early summer of the next year.

In 2014-2015, the League will be awarding one 3-year grant and one 1-year grant to worthy organizations in the community. The Targeted Grant Application Letter of Intent form is typically posted online by mid-July and has a submission due date of mid-August. In early September, the Targeted Grants and Volunteer Resources Committee will select semi-finalists based on these letters of intent and invited selected organizations to complete and submit the full application no later than the end of October.

The annual letter of intent form will include the necessary details such as the criteria for the three-year and one-year grants and the exact deadline date for submissions. Completed letters of intent and full applications must be submitted by email. Click here for our currently posted letter of intent. If this link is not for the current year or the deadline has passed, we ask you to please check back according to the application cycle as noted above (July to August). Additional details may be given by e-mailing grantsandvolunteers@jlw.org.

Past recipients of the Junior League of Washington targeted grants include Children's Hospital Foundation (2013), The D.C. Public Library Foundation (2014), Excel Academy (2011), Horton's Kids (2013), Inner City Inner Child (2009). The Literacy Lab (2012 and 2014), New Futures (2010), The Reading Connection (2014) The SEED School (2009 and 2013), The Washington Jesuit Academy (2011 and 2013), and Washington Middle School for Girls (2010 and 2012).

Opportunity Grants

The Targeted Grants and Volunteer Resources Committee evaluates applications and makes recommendations for where Junior League of Washington grants of $1,000 or less will be made to community organizations. Opportunity Grants are awarded to non-profit organizations demonstrating an unexpected short-term financial need. Organizations who have received more than $20,000 from the JLW in either the current fiscal year or the previous fiscal year are not eligible for Opportunity Grants. Please note all funds must be spent within 90 days of the contract award date, and the organization must submit a final report explaining how the funds were used along with proof of purchase.

Past recipients of the Junior League of Washington's opportunity grants include 826DC (2013 and 2014), Carpenter’s Shelter (2014), Hope House DC (2013), Jubilee JumpStart (2013 and 2014), and Little Lights Urban Ministries (2013).

Please check back soon for information about deadlines for the 2014- 2015 grant cycle. Application narratives must be submitted online. All required appendices, including the signed cover page, must be submitted via email to grantsandvolunteers@jlw.org. Additional details may be given by e-mailing grantsandvolunteers@jlw.org.

Trained Volunteers

The Targeted Grants and Volunteer Resources Committee identifies new Junior League of Washington volunteer placement opportunities from a pool of community organizations requesting trained Junior League of Washington volunteers. The committee reviews volunteer resource applications, conducts site visits, and recommends new community volunteer placements that are consistent with the typical availability of Junior League volunteers and the literacy focus of the League. Completed applications must be submitted by email. Click here for our currently posted application. If the application link is not for the current year or the deadline has passed, we ask you to please check back according to the application cycle as noted above (September to October). Additional details may be given by e-mailing grantsandvolunteers@jlw.org.

Current Junior League of Washington community partners who received trained volunteers through the application process include The Literacy Lab, Horton’s Kids and Community Family Life Services.

Through the Junior League of Washington's Done-in-a-Day Committee, we also provide trained volunteers in response to requests from community organizations for short-term volunteer service for special events. Please visit this page for more information to request short-term volunteers.

Resolution Read

The Junior League of Washington (JLW) volunteers have committed to purchasing and distributing new books to children in the greater Washington, D.C. community as part of the RESOLUTION READ program.  RESOLUTION READ concentrates the JLW’s focus on Literacy into three key areas:  the importance of reading out loud to children; placing age-appropriate books in the homes of children; and providing more books to schools and libraries, with a large emphasis on children in Wards 5, 7, and 8 and ages 0-5th grade.  By addressing these three areas, the JLW will continue to make a lasting impact in the Washington, D.C. community by fostering a passion for books and reading where it otherwise might not exist. 

For additional details on the Resolution Read program, please visit http://www.jlw.org/?nd=resolutionread.

Meg Graham Scholarship...Celebrating Service and Leadership

The Junior League of Washington volunteer service award, entitled the Meg Graham Scholarship...Celebrating Service and Leadership, is in honor of the late Reverend Margaret M. Graham, a former president of the Association of Junior Leagues International and former member of the Junior League of Washington. The annual scholarship program is available to graduating seniors living in D.C. and D.C. public, private, parochial, and charter schools, matriculating to an accredited post-secondary institution. The scholarship rewards a student who has demonstrated outstanding volunteerism with funds for college education expenses. The application is typically made available in early January, and the recipient is notified in April. Click here to download the application.  If this application link is not for the current year or the deadline has passed, we ask you to please check back according to the application cycle noted above (January to April). Additional details may be given by e-mailing grantsandvolunteers@jlw.org.

Poetry Contest for Students

Begun in 2000, the Junior League of Washington embarked on a program to encourage and support literacy, instituting a poetry contest in the elementary grades of Washington, D.C. public and charter schools. Open to kids in grades 4 through 8, D.C. public and charter school students are encouraged to author an original poem for the competition and cash prizes. The competition details are typically made available in January and the finalists are notified in the spring, with the opportunity to read their poems out loud at a Junior League of Washington event. Additional details may be given by e-mailing jlwpoetry@jlw.org.

Click here for the winning poems for the 2014 Poetry Contest.