The Junior League of Springfield (JLS) leverages its resources to address issues of need in our community. Historically, JLS focused on child abuse and neglect due to the alarming rates of child abuse in Greene County that far exceed the state average. JLS has widened its impact in recent years to also focus on the needs of underserviced and disadvantaged women and children in our community. The Junior League will impact these issues through advocacy, direct service, and volunteer time. We will collaborate with local experts and organizations to develop strong intervention programs, raise community awareness, and be part of the solution.
In the 2022-2023 league year, JLS will contribute volunteer hours to several projects:
A Girl Like Me Network is a 501c 3 Organization that brings an “OUTSIDE OF THE BOX” mindset, toward changing lives every day. We provide our girls with resources and support unlike any experience they had before. By providing them with a solid support system through our mentorship program, a learnt experience to expand in leadership and STEM preparation. Serving the Southwest Missouri Area with events, mentorship, and services for girls in 5th through 12th grade. JLS volunteers will partner with A Girl Like Me Network to support quarterly Sundae Table Talk sessions to share about careers and enrichment topics.
CASA of Southwest Missouri recruits, trains and supports community volunteers who advocate for the best interest of children who have been abused or neglected and are in foster care in Greene and Christian Counties. Data shows that foster youth are 29% less likely to graduate from high school when compared to their peers. In addition, less than 3% of foster youth will attend college or seek higher education after high school. JLS volunteers will partner with CASA to showcase various professions and discuss with older youth in foster care the process to achieve educational and professional goals.
The Child Advocacy Center serves and supports neglected and abused children of Southwest and Southcentral Missouri. In coordination with the Missouri Children’s Division and law enforcement, as well as medical and mental health professionals, the Child Advocacy Center utilizes a best practices approach that provides accessible and timely forensic interviews, medical exams, and counseling services, in a safe, child-friendly environment. Through the Comfort and Care project, JLS volunteers will have the opportunity to make fleece comfort blankets for abused children.
Through the Diaper Bank of the Ozarks’ mission to distribute disposable diapers through partner agencies, over a hundred agencies are served throughout 59 counties in the Ozarks. The DBO’s distribution network fulfills the ultimate goal of keeping babies healthy and happy by providing access to diapers, basic needs, and education resources to families in need. As part of the Notes of Kindness project in partnership with the DBO, JLS volunteers will assist in the design and production of cards to be included in packages of diapers to brighten the lives of families in a small way.
Down Syndrome Group of the Ozarks
Started by a group of mothers in 2006, DSGO is an organization made up of a committed group of parents, professionals, and other interested parties dedicated to creating an extensive network of support for individuals with Down syndrome and those who love and serve them in Southwest Missouri. Down Syndrome Group of the Ozarks exists to bring life and wellness to families who are advocating for a community of inclusion for individuals with Down syndrome. JLS volunteers will partner with DSGO to support their annual Santa’s Workshop event.
Habitat for Humanity brings people together to build homes, communities, and hope by helping partners achieve their goals of owning a home and helping those who own a home to preserve and repair it. JLS volunteers will partner with Habitat for Humanity to participate in the 2022 Women Build.
I Pour Life assists in celebrating the achievements of youth in the I Pour Life Program. JLS will assist approximately 200 homeless and at-risk youth aging out of children’s services (50 at each event). JLS volunteers will provide support at three impact events for Life Strengths. Volunteers at impact events will provide opportunities for youth to network, expand on life skills development (thank you card writing, dinner, and first impressions) as well as provide JLS volunteers the opportunity to make a valuable connection with youth.
Started as a signature project of the Junior League of Springfield in 2005, Isabel’s House’s mission is to provide immediate refuge for children, ages birth to 12, whose families are in crisis. By partnering with families and the community, Isabel’s House works to strengthen families and prevent child abuse and neglect. JLS volunteers will help to update one children’s bedroom and the nursery at the facility with a new theme and décor.
On Angels’ Wings seeks to improve the mental health and wellness of families with medically fragile children (regardless of race, ethnicity, class status, or orientation) through therapeutic photography and grief recovery services, free of charge. JLS volunteers will support OAW at the annual Making Memories Day carnival.
The Rebound Foundation provides two transitional homes for survivors of domestic abuse, called Marda’s House. Through this program, female survivors enjoy clean, stable housing for six months while they work towards independence. Additional services provided to residents help support their transition to self-sufficiency and self-empowerment. JLS volunteers will assist with projects associated with the new Kids Inn drop-in childcare center.
Updated June 7, 2022