Junior League of Tallahassee helps local children shop for school

On Sunday, members of the Junior League of Tallahassee helped more than 100 local children shop for back-to-school items at its annual Kids’ Boutique shopping event. In partnership with Kohl’s, event sponsor American Classic Agency and CenturyLink, the League purchased back-to-school items including clothes, shoes, backpacks and school supplies.

President Taylor Hatch said, “We are so pleased to be able to help families with clothes and supplies so that these amazing kids can go to school with confidence and have a successful year. Thank you to our partners at Kohl’s, American Classic Agency and CenturyLink, as well as all of our volunteers for making this annual event a success.”

The Junior League of Tallahassee works directly with guidance counselors at Leon County elementary schools to identify children who are in need of essential school items. There is no cost to the student or his or her family to participate.

“Junior League of Tallahassee helps local children shop for school.” Tallahassee Democrat [Tallahassee] 8 August 2017 Published: 1. Print.

 


News Coverage of Kids’ Boutique 2017

ABC 27 News at Sunrise 6:30 a.m.
ABC 27 News at 5:00 p.m.
ABC 27 News at Sunrise 5:30 a.m.
ABC 27 News Weekend Edition


‘Little Black Dress Initiative’ aims to raise poverty awareness

Some local women are taking a new spin on the classic little black dress.

Often traced back to famed fashion designer Coco Chanel, it is  the dress Audrey Hepburn made iconic in the 1960s. It’s seen as a classic go-to outfit to wear from work to brunch to cocktail parties.

The Junior League of Tallahassee is adding another dimension to the fashion statement. To raise awareness about local poverty, Junior League chapters are taking part in the Little Black Dress Initiative, in which members wear the same black dress or outfit for five consecutive days. The women’s nonprofit organization aims to empower women to commit to charitable efforts year-round. About 40 local members are participating in the initiative.

Participants will wear that same dress everywhere — to work, grocery shopping, the park, out to dinner. They’ll also wear a button pinned to the front that reads, “ask me about my dress.” The dress signifies the few choices women in poverty have for clothing.

Members hope strangers and coworkers alike will indeed ask, and then spark a conversation about local poverty and how residents can help. Each participating member has a peer-to-peer fundraising site online.

The organization will use the funds to support local projects like Big Bend Homeless Coalition’s HOPE Community program and JLT’s Kids Boutique, in which JLT works with Leon County Schools to buy school supplies and backpacks for kids in need. There’s also Done in a Day, in which members take on a project that can be finished in a day, like cleaning a community center. In Leon County, the poverty rate is 21.8 percent, and 29.7 percent in the city of Tallahassee, according to U.S. Census Bureau QuickFacts data.

“Us wearing a black dress for five days isn’t hard. What’s more important is the conversation that will be started and the awareness that will come from this,” said Jess Tharpe, Tallahassee’s Junior League president.

A friend told Alexis Phillips, president-elect, she couldn’t decide on which black dress to wear for the week.

“I said [to her], ‘Women in poverty don’t have that choice,'”  she said.

Phillips said she hopes other community members will be inspired to take part in raising awareness.

“I hope this event can grow from year to year and that more people from the community can join us,” she said.

Hassanein, Nada. “‘Little Black Dress Initiative’ aims to raise poverty awareness.” USA Today 3 April 2017: Page(s). Web. 20 November 2017.

Junior League’s ‘Whale of a Sale’ to make waves this weekend

The Junior League of Tallahassee will host its annual Whale of a Sale on March 3 and 4 at the North Florida Fairgrounds. Since its inception in 1974, the Whale of a Sale has grown to be Tallahassee’s largest high-end yard sale and features affordable prices on items including new and used furniture, clothes, housewares, toys, sporting goods, appliances, books, music and more.

The event will kick-off Friday from 6-10 p.m. with a preview party featuring a beer garden. Admission for the Preview Party is $6, and Cash and Woody from 103.1 The Wolf will broadcast live from the event.

Along with the opportunity to enjoy early shopping, community members are also invited to join the JLT for the Big Food Truck Bash from 6 p.m.-10 p.m. on Friday. The Bash will feature local food trucks and vendors with a variety of cuisines, a beer garden and entertainment. Admission to the Bash is free and preview shopping tickets are $6.

The fun continues on March 4 from 8 a.m. until 2 p.m. and admission is $3. Food vendors will be onsite for breakfast and lunch on Saturday, as well. Tickets will be sold at the door both days. All proceeds will benefit the JLT and its community projects.

All proceeds from the sale go directly back into the community through the Junior League’s strategic projects that benefit children and families in Tallahassee and the surrounding areas. Its success is directly tied to the support of the Tallahassee community, and the many corporate partners and sponsors who support the mission and activities of the League, including The North Florida Fairgrounds and Streamline Roofing and Construction by offering the storage, logistical help and other support integral to the success of the fundraiser.

“Junior League’s ‘Whale of a Sale’ to make waves this weekend.” 27 February 2017. Tallahassee Democrat.  Web.  21 October 2017.

Junior League of Tallahassee hosts 16th annual Operation Prom Dress

Prom season is upon us, and while many teenage girls are hitting the racks to find that perfect dress, one local group is doing everything they can to make the prom experience a perfect one.

The Junior League of Tallahassee hosted a one-day boutique style shopping event on Saturday, packed with over 1,500 dresses, shoes, and accessories provided at no cost.

“I think it’s kind of kind that they do that because there are some people that can’t afford stuff. And it makes their day special too,” says Florida High senior, Carmen Garza.

“Knowing that we can spend our last year being happy with all our friends, and just having fun, and being beautiful and gorgeous,” says Florida High senior, Angel Broxton.

Best friends Carmen and Angel found their perfect prom dresses at the event. They say finding their outfits early on will help relieve some of the stress of planning the perfect night.

Fernandez, Erika. “Junior League of Tallahassee Hosts 16th annual Operation Prom Dress.” 11 February 2017. WCTV. Web. 21 October 2017.

Operation Prom Dress has all the glam

The Junior League of Tallahassee and the Palmer Munroe Teen Center present the 15th Annual Operation Prom Dress this week. The event will provide prom clothes so that all High School students can shine on prom night!

Operation Prom Dress will be from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 11, at Palmer Munroe Teen Center, 1900 Jackson Bluff Road.

For many young women, prom is an important but costly, part of the high school experience. The Junior League of Tallahassee invites all area high school students to attend a one-day boutique-style shopping event where prom dresses, shoes and accessories are provided at no cost.

Operation Prom Dress began in 2001 as an event for the students of Gretchen Everhart, a school for exceptional students. The event has since grown into a regional project serving hundreds of local teens each year. This year, for the Junior League of Tallahassee’s 15th Annual Operation Prom Dress we are proud to have a new partnership with the Palmer Munroe Teen Center.

The event will take place at the Teen Center and will be a special day for all. Thanks to the generous support of our sponsors and donors throughout the community, we have over 1,500 dresses for any local high school student to choose from.

There is no charge for this event. For additional information on Operation Prom Dress, please visit www.jltallahassee.org, or email [email protected] or call Letreze Gooding 850-980-1892.

“Operation Prom Dress has all the glam.”  6 February 2017.  Tallahassee Democrat.  Web.  21 October 2017.

Junior League gives kids clothes, confidence to start the school year

For hundreds of Leon County families, there isn’t much room in the household budget for back to school shopping.

But on Sunday, children were given a chance to start the school year with a set of new clothes, shoes and a backpack stuffed with supplies during the annual “Kids’ Boutique” event at Kohl’s department store.

“This is a big help, especially for single parents,” said Latoya Wilson, a mother of four. “I’m excited to be here.”

“It’s also a good experience for them,” she added, nodding at her beaming six-year-old son Lennox. “As long as they’re happy, I’m happy.”

Lennox just found the perfect pair of sneakers — Star Wars themed, with soles that lit up when they struck the ground. He was one of 110 local kids given $135 to spend.

Kids’ Boutique has become the Junior League of Tallahassee‘s signature event, beginning 20 years ago.

The league also hosts “Operation Prom Dress” in the springtime, in which hundreds of girls from economically disadvantaged backgrounds receive formal gowns at no cost, and leads several community projects, including work with PACE Center for Girls and Girls on the Run. Members log thousands of volunteer hours in a year.

“This really focuses on the heart of our mission of improving the lives of children and families,” said Jess Tharpe, the group’s president. “A new pair of shoes could give them fresh confidence to start the school year right.”

Curcio, Amanda Claire. “Junior League gives kids clothes, confidence to start the school year.” Tallahassee Democrat.  7 August 2016.WCTV. Web. 20 October 2017.

Prom-goers Shop For Free Gowns at Junior League “Store”

Prom season is coming up fast. Hundreds of Tallahassee area young ladies were shopping for free gowns and accessories on Saturday (3/5/16).

It was the Junior League of Tallahassee’s yearly “Operation Prom Dress”. Project Co-chair Ashley Carr said donated gowns and accessories filled the large meeting room at Tallahassee Community College’s Center for Workforce Development.

“Vocelle’s Bridal Shop actually donated more than 200 brand new with-tag dresses and of course we collect donations from community partners and consumers all year-round,” Carr explained. “So we have over 1,300 dresses this year, so all sizes, all colors, we really have something for everyone this year.”

Among the very happy customers, SAIL High School Junior Savannah Burris.

“Teal blue and black dress in mermaid style and lace,” she said, describing her prize. “It’s beautiful!”

The League’s Operation Prom Dress began 15 years ago for Gretchen Everhart students. It’s since expanded to an open event for the whole community.

Flanigan, Tom.  “Prom-goers Shop for Free Gowns at Junior League “Store”.”  7 March 2016.  WFSU.  Web.  21 October 2017.

Junior League of Tallahassee Hosts ‘Whale of a Sale’

Folks in Tallahassee are going shopping for a great cause. It’s the annual ‘Whale of a Sale’ fundraiser, hosted by the Junior League of Tallahassee. The event features gently used merchandise at low prices.

This year, the event is being held at the Centre of Tallahassee, right next to Bath & Body Works.

The event kicked off at 5 p.m. today with a Preview Party sale. It continues tomorrow, from 8 a.m. until 3 p.m.

Proceeds from the event benefit Junior League of Tallahassee projects, including Operation Prom Dress — which outfits students from Gretchen Everhart School for Exceptional Students and local, deserving teens with prom attire — and Kids Boutique — which provides back-to-school clothes and supplies to children in need.

The sale is not only a fundraiser for the Junior League’s projects, but also gives community members the opportunity to buy much needed items at affordable prices.

Each year, the event attracts approximately 500 people to the Preview Party event Friday evening and approximately 3,000 to the Saturday sale.

WCTV Eyewitness News. “Junior League of Tallahassee Hosts ‘Whale of a Sale’.” 26 February 2016.WCTV. Web. 20 October 2017.

Whale of a Sale

The Junior League of Tallahassee hosted their 42nd annual Whale of a Sale Preview Party event at The Centre of Tallahassee on Friday.

The Whale of a Sale is an event that allowed residents to come purchase affordable furniture, clothes, housewares, toys, sporting goods, appliances, books and many more items.

This year’s sale was sponsored by AMWAT moving warehouse and storage but it was also a preview party for Tallahassee Mall.

Residents were able to get a glimpse of Tallahassee Mall before it officially opens and also purchase items that were on sale.

“This is our biggest sale of the year. It’s basically like a big garage sale for the entire community to attend,” said Alissa Gill, member of the Junior League of Tallahassee.

Outside of the sale in the parking lot there was an overflow of food trucks and Proof Brewing to cater the event.

Some of the food trucks that were attendance at the event were: Ono Kai Hawaiian style kitchen, Puerto Rican Cuisine, Captain Q’s and Donaven’s.

According to Agata Wlodarczyk, Communication Director of The Junior League, they were able to empty out the Express store for two days to allow residents shop.

“We were lucky to be able to use the Express store especially because it was free of charge. Thankfully they support us,” Wlodarczyk said.

All of the proceeds from Whale of a Sale would help the Junior League to sponsor their upcoming community projects like the Kids Boutique and Operation prom dress.

According to JLTallahassee.org these are events that have been going on since 2001 for the students at Gretchen Everhart.

“Next week we will give young women in high school the opportunity to get their dresses and accessories for their prom free of charge,” said Wlodarczyk.

The Kids Boutique is a community project that they have for kids in the area every year before school starts. The Junior League passes out school supplies to the children in the community.

The Junior League of Tallahassee is a nonprofit organization of women committed to improving the lives of children and families through the effective action and leadership of trained volunteers. Its purpose is exclusively educational and charitable.

Webb, DeVante.  “Whale of a Sale.” 2016.  Journey Magazine.  Web. 21 October 2017.

Junior League of Tallahassee Gets Kids Prepared For School

The Junior League of Tallahassee helped local kids get prepared for back to school Sunday.

The organization hosted its 19th Annual Kids’ Boutique at Kohl’s on Appalachee Parkway in Tallahassee.

Participating families were given an allowance to spend on clothes. The students also received a backpack full of much needed supplies.

The event was also a way to help boost the students’ self esteem start the school year off right.

“We currently have 8-9 students elementary school students signed up from Leon County and we have allocated approximately one hundred dollars per student. We feel it’s part of our mission as the Junior League of Tallahassee to give back to the community particularly women and children of the community,” said Elissa Saavedra, an active member of the Junior League.

The goal was to give back-to-school items to at least 100 local kids.

“Junior League of Tallahassee Gets Kids Prepared For School.” 2 August 2015. WTXL.  Web.  21 October 2017.

Junior League Hosts Kids’ Boutique

Back-to-school time is coming up fast.  On Sunday (8/2/15) the Junior League of Tallahassee was helping get nearly one-hundred kids ready for the classroom.

“I’ve got a lot of cool shirts for winter,” he said smiling broadly. “And I’ve got some shirts for summer because it’s very hot and stuff.”

His backpack also contained a bunch of school supplies.  Junior League of Tallahassee President Kelly Ann Fasano said this is her organization’s first big community activity of the season.

“It really focuses on our mission to get kids ready and work on their self-esteem for back-to-school,” she said.  “So we’re not just giving them stuff; we’re getting them ready, we’re going to get them to feel good.  They get to go into their classrooms with fresh supplies, looking good, ready to have a good year and ready to be successful.”

Kids Boutique families are chosen with the help of the school district.

Flanigan, Tom.  “Junior League Hosts Kids’ Boutique.”  3 August 2015.  WFSU.  Web.  21 October 2017.

The Junior League of Tallahassee Announces the 2015 Whale of a Sale

The Junior League of Tallahassee (JLT) will host the 2015 Whale of a Sale, the community’s largest yard sale Friday, February 27 and Saturday, February 28 at the former Harvey’s Supermarket located at 5010 West Tennessee Street. This year’s sale is presented by AMWAT Moving, Warehousing and Storage and is JLT’s largest fundraiser since 1974.

Whale of a Sale has grown to be Tallahassee’s largest yard sale, featuring great deals on new and used furniture, clothes, house wares, toys, sporting goods, appliances, books, music and more. Along with the opportunity to enjoy early shopping, community members are also invited to join the JLT for the Big Food Truck Bash on Friday night from 5:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m. The Bash will feature more than five local food trucks and a beer garden. Admission to the Bash is free and preview shopping tickets are $5. On Saturday, the sale continues from 8:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. and shopping admission is $2.

All proceeds from the event go directly back into JLT community projects and partnerships. The JLT currently partners with Girls on the Run of the Big Bend, an organization that works to inspire girls to be healthy and confident using experience-based curriculum which creatively integrates running. The JLT also partners with the Boys and Girls Club of the Big Bend, an organization dedicated to the enablement of young people to reach their full potential as productive, caring, and responsible citizens. League members work with these organizations and others to supply trained volunteers and help accomplish each organization’s mission.

Aside from working with community partners, the JLT hosts two annual community projects which impact the lives of young people in Leon County and the surrounding areas. Kids’ Boutique is an event that provides back-to-school clothing and school supplies to children in need with help of Kohl’s. Additionally, the League hosts Operation Prom Dress during the prom season which outfits students from Gretchen Everhart School and local deserving teens with prom attire.

The Junior League of Tallahassee would like to thank our sponsors: AMWAT, TALCOR, Rowland Publishing, Southeastern Plastic Surgery, Growing Room, Esposito Lawn & Garden, Earth Fare, Jason’s Deli, Loli and the Bean, Tallahassee Nurseries, Karmanos Printing, Kohl’s, American Audio Visual, Seminole Tennis Camps, Holy Comforter Episcopal, North Florida Financial Corp, AC2 Designs, Full Press Apparel, Proof Brewing Co, and Marpan.

The Junior League of Tallahassee.  “The Junior League of Tallahassee Announces the 2015 Whale of a Sale.” 27 February 2015.  WCTV.  Web.  21 October 2017.

Junior League of Tallahassee’s Whale of a Sale

The Non-profit hosted its 41st annual Whale of a Sale event. Hundreds of people came out to browse the extra large yard. It featured everything from clothing, to household items to holiday decorations.

The Whale of a Sale event is the Junior League’s largest annual fundraiser.

Rubino, Natalie.  “Junior League of Tallahassee’s Whale of a Sale.”  28 February 2015.  WCTZ.  Web.  21 October 2017.

Not Your Grandma’s Junior League

I have, for the past year or so, had the opportunity to serve as a community advisor to the Junior League of Tallahassee. When asked to participate, I had no concept of what my role would be or what benefit my observations or comments could provide to the organization.

At first, it was attending a Q&A session with other advisors. Several JLT members in leadership roles asked us to be candid and transparent with our feedback. The one question that sticks with me is what was my, and the advisory committee’s, perception of the League.

The general responses were mixed community perceptions based on what demographic being asked. Here are a few examples:

  • An elitist social class of busybody Southern ladies.
  • Rich ladies who wear sweaters and pearls, have parties and go out to lunch a lot.
  • An extension of college sorority life.
  • And many have no perception of who Junior Leaguers are or what they do.

None of these descriptions casts a positive light on this organization and, today, all of these perceptions are stuck in the era of black-and-while television reception of the ’50s.

Through Tallahassee Magazine, Emerald Coast Magazine and our 850 regional business magazine, I have had numerous opportunities to interact with the Junior League organization and individuals in Tallahassee and Destin over the past two decades and can therefore refute all of these archaic perceptions. 

Members of the Junior League, from my real-time experience, are astute business, community and family leaders who are poised and passionate about everything they do. The organization provides a forum that brings like-minds together and serves multiple functions:

  • As an opportunity for individuals to develop their interpersonal skills to become the next generation of community and business leaders.
  • To provide an organization that contributes to the community and individuals in need.
  • To develop a network of friends and associates that will help one another and mentor young women embarking upon marriage and motherhood.

In the Destin area, the Junior League of the Emerald Coast is the sole benefactor of our Best of the Emerald Coast event, which draws more than 3,500 people on a fall evening and raises $45,000 — which goes right back into the community. Here in Tallahassee, the League raises more than $35,000 with its annual Whale of a Sale, again sending every dollar back into the community. The JLT’s projects include back-to-school shopping at the Kids Boutique, twice-monthly family nights at Boys and Girls Clubs, Second Harvest Backpack program and smaller Done in a Day projects. 

In March, I was asked to attend Operation Prom Dress, where about a dozen children from Gretchen Everhart School came to the Tallahassee Elks Lodge to choose a complimentary prom dress. I watched something special happen that morning as League members took these kids, many severely disabled, through a magical journey to choose a dress, get it fitted and select accessories to pull the look together. The next day, it was open to any young lady who wanted a dress so she could attend prom and feel good about herself.

Most of the children from Gretchen Everhart could not speak, and many had bodies that were physically ravaged by a lifetime in a wheelchair. The women of the League communicated with these kids like they were their own and made them feel so special.

This takes a lot of courage and a confidence in one’s own skin to work so closely and genuinely with a population that most people just look away from. This is the essence and the core of the modern Junior League.

What the League has is really a branding issue. Beginning this year, the Junior League of Tallahassee will embark upon a branding/rebranding campaign, and Rowland Publishing plans to cover it all the way through the process. This summer, 850 — The Business Magazine of Northwest Florida is planning a feature story on branding and rebranding and plans to bring the fundamental element of this process to our business readership, showcasing local entities who are doing so — among them Florida State University and the nonprofit Junior League of Tallahassee. In addition, over the following 12 to 18 months, we plan to provide readers updates on the progress and eventual results.

With regard to the League … my goal is to dispel all misperceptions about an organization that does so much more for our communities and the people than you might know.

It’s a new century, and it’s a new generation of women taking the Junior League to a new level of awareness, accomplishment and success.

Rowland, Brian. “Not Your Grandma’s Junior League.” 850 Business Magazine. June-July 2014. Web. 21 October 2017.

Junior League of Tallahassee to host 2014 Whale of a Sale

On Saturday, Feb. 28 and Saturday, Mar. 1, the Junior League of Tallahassee (JLT) will host the 2014 Whale of a Sale at the Tallahassee Mall.

This year marks the 40th Birthday of the JLT’s signature fundraising event. The Whale of a Sale is the community’s largest garage sale, showcasing gently-used, high-quality items at bargain prices. Items include house wares, furniture, sporting goods, children’s items and more. All of the money raised through this event goes directly back into the JLT’s community projects to push their mission of enhancing the lives of children and families.

On Friday, February 28 is the 2014 Whale of a Sale Big Food Truck Bash. The event is from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. and early shopping admission is $5.00.

On Saturday, March 1 is the 2014 Whale of a Sale General Shopping from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. and admission is just $2.00.

This year’s Whale of a Sale will also feature a Community Service event with the Boys and Girls Club of Big Bend.

Junior League of Tallahassee’s 2014 Whale of A Sale to be held Feb. 28- March 1

The Whale of a Sale, Junior League of Tallahassee’s (JLT) largest fundraiser since 1974, features gently used merchandise at low prices. 2014 Whale of a Sale will take place on Friday and Saturday at the Tallahassee Mall.

All proceeds from the Whale of a Sale go directly back into the community through Junior League projects benefiting children and families in Tallahassee. From Operation Prom Dress – outfitting students from Gretchen Everhart School for Exceptional Students and local, deserving teens with prom attire; Kids Boutique – providing back-to-school clothes and supplies to children in need; just to name a few of the Junior League of Tallahassee projects.

The Whale is not only a fundraiser for the Junior League’s projects, but it also gives community members the opportunity to buy things that they need at affordable prices. Each year, the event attracts approximately 500 people to the Preview Party event Friday evening and approximately 3,000 to the Saturday sale. The Junior League of Tallahassee collects and stores QUALITY items year-round with the help of AMWAT Moving and Warehousing. All items not sold are donated to local charities.

This year starts a new tradition and increases our ability to give back to the community by coupling a community service project with our largest fundraising event. The Greg McCray Boys & Girls Club has been selected as the inaugural beneficiary of the Whale of a Sale’s community service project.

As a league, our mission is to improve the lives of children and the Whale of a Sale’s inaugural community service project furthers this mission by selecting approximately twenty deserving children and their families from the Boys & Girls Club to attend a private shopping event at the close of the Whale of a Sale, where we will have pizza and also cake from The Cake Shop, the children and their families will be able to shop, free of charge!

To kick-off the 40th Anniversary of the Whale of a Sale, JLT is hosting a Preview Party and Food Truck Bash event on Friday, February 28 from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. and provides attendees with a fun evening of delicious Food Truck Fare, beer, wine and entertainment for just $5. Enjoy shopping on Saturday, March 1 from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. for only $2 admission. Tickets can be purchased at www.jltallahassee.org or at the event. Attendees get the best deals in town at Tallahassee’s largest garage sale.

The Whale of a Sale would not be possible without the help of amazing sponsors! AMWAT Moving, Warehousing and Storage, Rowland Publishing, Southeastern Plastic Surgery, Growing Room, Esposito Lawn & Garden Center, Earth Fare, Jason’s Deli, Loli and the Bean, Tallahassee Nurseries, Karmanos Printing & Graphics, Kohl’s, American Audio Visual, Tallahassee Mall, Seminole High Performance Tennis Camps, Holy Comforter Episcopal, N. Fl Financial Corp, AC2 Designs, The Tally Connection and the Tallahassee Democrat.

Be sure to like the Whale on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/JLTWhaleofaSale and follow the @jltwhaleofasale on Twitter for exciting news and updates!

Phillips, Alexis. “Junior League of Tallahassee’s 2014 Whale of A Sale to be held Feb. 28 – March 1.” 27 February 2014.  Tallahassee Democrat.  Web.  21 October 2017.

Junior League Of Tallahassee To Hold Kids’ Boutique Winter Event

The Junior League of Tallahassee will host its Kids’ Boutique winter shopping event on Sunday, October 27, 2013 at Kohl’s Department Store on Apalachee Parkway from 5 to 7 p.m.

Kids’ Boutique is one the JLT’s signature community projects. With the winter months quickly approaching the JLT will host a winter shopping event.

For this event, the JLT works directly with guidance counselors at non-traditional Leon County elementary schools to identify children in need of essential winter clothing. Hosting the event with our partner, Kohl’s, the League will purchase coats and cold weather clothing to at-need children.

In addition to shopping, students and their families also have the opportunity to walk through the JLT Literacy Fair. We are excited for this opportunity to promote reading amongst elementary age children.

Additionally, each participant will receive a bag that will be filled with books, a lunch box, and other goodies.

The JLT is grateful for the supporters who contribute to this and all JLT events:
· Florida Department of Education – Just Read, Florida!
· Florida Center for Reading Research & Regional Educational Laboratory Southeast
· Florida State University
· McGraw-Hill Education

All interested media are welcome to attend. The event will take place:

JLT Kids’ Boutique Winter Event
Sunday, October 27, 2013
5 p.m. to 7 p.m.
Kohl’s Department Store
2010 Apalachee Parkway
Tallahassee, FL 32301

About the Junior League of Tallahassee
The Junior League of Tallahassee is a nonprofit organization of more than 600 women committed to improving the lives of children and families through the effective action and leadership of trained volunteers.

Its purpose is exclusively educational and charitable. Learn more at www.jltallahassee.org .

The Junior League of Tallahassee Press.  “The Junior League of Tallahassee to Hold Kids’ Boutique Winter Event.” 27 October 2013. WCTV.  Web.  21 October 2017.

Junior League of Tallahassee Helps Local Children Prepare for School

The Junior League of Tallahassee today provided more than 150 local students with the clothes and supplies needed for a successful school year at the 16th annual Kids’ Boutique Shopping Event at Kohl’s on Apalachee Parkway. Kids’ Boutique is one of the JLT’s signature community projects. JLT volunteers work directly with guidance counselors at Leon County elementary schools to identify children in need of essential school clothes and shoes. And with the help of generous corporate partners like Kohl’s Department Store, JLT volunteers take the children and their families shopping and provide them with clothing, shoes and a backpack filled with new school supplies.

“Kids’ Boutique is one of our membership’s favorite events as we share the children’s excitement in getting ready for the school year,” said JLT President Jill Pope. “As volunteers, we love this opportunity to give back to our community and help provide these deserving children the confidence and tools needed to succeed in school. We thank our community and corporate partners for helping us make this event so special for these children and their families.”

In addition, students and their families had the opportunity to walk through the JLT Health Fair, where they received a free eye exam, met McGruff the Crime Dog, and collected information from Healthy Kids, Florida KidCare, Whole Child Leon and other health and human service agencies.

A special thank you to the following corporate partners who helped to make this event a success: AMWAT Moving and Warehousing; Costco; Cricket’s Tree Service; Earth Fare; Eubanks, Barrett, Fasig & Brooks; Full Press Apparel; Holy Comforter Episcopal School; Jason’s Deli; North Florida Women’s Care; Office Depot Tallahassee; Rowland Publishing; Southeastern Plastic Surgery; Tadlock Roofing; The Shoe Box; and Walgreens Tallahassee.

**Photos available by request.**

About the Junior League of Tallahassee
The Junior League of Tallahassee is a nonprofit organization of more than 600 women committed to improving the lives of children and families through the effective action and leadership of trained volunteers. Its purpose is exclusively educational and charitable.

Learn more at www.jltallahassee.org.

Associated Press. “Junior League of Tallahassee Helps Local Children Prepare for School.” 5 August 2012.WCTV. Web. 20 October 2017.

Tallahassee’s ‘Junior League’ Wins Praise for Volunteer Efforts

The Junior League of Tallahassee was named the Outstanding Volunteer Philanthropic Organization by the Association of Fundraising Professionals Big Bend Chapter on Nov. 10, in honor of National Philanthropy Day. Each year, the AFP honors individuals and groups who have enhanced philanthropy in their communities and the world.

R. Jai Gillum, an active member who sits on the Board of Directors, said the JLT was nominated by The Tallahassee Memorial Hospital Foundation, which the group volunteers with.

In 2010, the JLT donated $10,000 to help support a newly renovated waiting room in Tallahassee Memorial Pediatric Services. In 2011, the JLT provided ceiling tiles with ocean scenes for the Pediatric Services Treatment Room.

“The Junior League of Tallahassee is honored to be recognized for our talented and dedicated membership and their amazing work in our community,” JLT President Cari Molinaro said in a press release. “We are 500 women strong and excited to continue to fulfill our mission of improving the lives children and families.”

The JLT serves more than 5,000 volunteer hours and contributes more than $80,000 annually to the Tallahassee community through fundraisers and community donations.

“Without the community support of their fundraisers, the JLT cannot do what they are able to do in the community,” said Jennifer Diaz, who has been a part of the Junior League for five years. “It is important for the community to know that there is an organization that’s sole purpose is to improve the lives of the families in our community.”

JLT project includes Kids Boutique, which provides back-to-school clothes and supplies for elementary school children in need. The group also sponsors Operation Prom Dress and gives students from Gretchen Everhart School for Exceptional Students and local teens prom attire

Upcoming events include the 2011 Jingle Jubilee—A Canopy Road Christmas, from Friday, Dec. 9, through Sunday, Dec. 11, at the Leon County Civic Center. This year’s Jubilee features Breakfast with Santa, a Girls Night Out event and more. All proceeds fund the community projects of the Junior League of Tallahassee.

“We have such a great impact on lives,” said Gillum. “A family may not be able to buy their child school clothes, and that’s something some people think is trivial and materialistic, but when a child feels good and has good self-esteem, they can then learn.”

Spates, Jannina.  “Tallahassee’s ‘Junior League’ Wins Praise for Volunteer Efforts.”  17 November 2011.  The FAMUan Online. Web. 21 October 2017.

Junior League of Tallahassee Hosts Annual Operation Prom Dress

“I’m actually getting a free prom dress and free accessories and free shoes,” said Breana Jerningan.

Breana Jernigan joined more than 150 other local teens whose dream of going to prom will come true, thanks to Operation Prom Dress.

“Not a lot of kids can afford spending hundreds of dollars on prom dresses and things like that,” said Jernigan.

The annual event allows students to shop from a selection of more than 1300 dresses which have been donated by others in the community …and the best part is, it won’t cost them a dime.

“I was wondering how she was going to be able to go, I knew we could get the ticket but as far as a dress and things, I was really stressing it,” said Michelle Fulcher.

Parents like Michelle Fulcher worried they would have to crush their daughter’s dream of dancing the night away at prom because it was a luxury they couldn’t afford. But thanks to the Junior League of Tallahassee, these young women will sparkle and shine.

“It’s my favorite color, it’s purple, and it’s strapless and it’s long and covers my legs, and it looks really good on me,” Elizabeth Fulcher.

Now these girls can feel like Cinderella on their prom night, and get a fairy tale ending to high school.

If you’d like to donate your prom dress, shoes or other accessories to Operation Prom Dress, you can drop items off year-round at The Junior League of Tallahassee office or a drop box location near you.

Milton, Jennifer.  “Junior League of Tallahassee Hosts Annual Operation Prom Dress.”  5 March 2011.  WCTV.  Web.  21 October 2017.