Welcome to the Junior League of Washington!
Welcome to the Junior League of Washington’s (JLW) 109th year. This will be an exciting year, full of transitions and opportunities to come back together.
This year we will be CENTERING OUR COMMUNITY. We will focus on our members, strengthen relationships with existing partners, and look toward the future as we form new collaborations with community organizations working within our new focus area, in effect for the 2022-2023 League year. Throughout the year, we’ll also look to our membership and the community for input on our next strategic plan, Impact 2027. The League will keep our members and community in mind as it plans our priorities for the next five years.
JLW will also take on on the important task of crafting a Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion plan for our League, to ensure the League will build and maintain a diverse membership, with the skills and expertise to maximize our effectiveness. Our members are our greatest asset, and we strive to make JLW a welcoming place for all women to thrive.
We’ll continue working to grow JLW’s relationship with other local Junior Leagues, and will bring them together to host a virtual Mid-Atlantic Conference in summer 2021. This will be an exciting opportunity to connect with other Leagues to discuss ideas and ways we can work together to engage and train our members, and better serve our communities.
We are excited to work closely with our existing community partners, our direct connection to the DC community, as they invite back our volunteers. Together with these valued partners, JLW has made meaningful contributions to our community, and we look forward to continuing to volunteer with them to support their clients and the community at-large.
To prepare for the new JLW focus area, in effect for the 2022-2023 League Year, our Focus Area Task Force will shift from research to implementation. The team of members from community, fund development, and membership parts of the League will work to lay the groundwork for the new focus area. Everyone will play a role in the shift from literacy to supporting pathways to opportunity through improved access to education, professional and financial development, and capacity building resources in our community. This will truly be a JLW community effort. The team will work to learn more about the community, meeting organizations and community leaders to find where best to dedicate our volunteer and financial resources to have the most impact.
We encourage community organizations to participate in our Community Roundtable events to share ideas and information with JLW and other local organizations, and request volunteers to partner with us to serve the DC community together.
In the 2020-2021 League Year, JLW provided approximately $120,000 in Community Assistance Fund (CAF) grants to the DC metro community. One $50,000 grant was designated for food assistance, and fourteen $5,000 grants were designated for organizations serving those impacted by COVID-19. Organizations that received grants related to an increased demand for service due to COVID-19 include Greater DC Diaper Bank, Georgetown Ministry Center, Restoration Immigration Legal Aid (RILA), Shepard’s Table, Iona Senior Services, Bringing Resources to Aid Women’s Shelters (BRAWS), Samaritan Inns, Carpenter’s Shelter, Bridges to Independence, BritePaths, and Common Good City Farm. JLW’s $50,000 food assistance grant was awarded to Nourish Now.
Given the overwhelming community interest and response to the grants, JLW will offer CAF grants again this year, but to organizations providing urgent, basic needs to community members. JLW is proud to support organizations making a difference in the lives of the DC community’s most vulnerable members through these grants. Opportunities will be announced in late summer, with applications found here.
This year will see JLW moving towards our usual programming. We’ll bring our members together to volunteer with our community partners, celebrate the 30th Anniversary of Tossed and Found, as well as enjoy Kitchen Tour, Women’s Leadership Breakfast, and end the year with our Annual Reception to celebrate our volunteers and community work as we wrap-up a challenging period and embark on a new era for our work in the community.
Our 109th year will be an opportunity for us to build upon all we’ve done, and lay a foundation for future success.
Thank you for joining us on this journey of Centering our Community.
Amanda C. Walke
2021-2022 JLW President