Places & Faces
Collecting Supplies for the Little Free Pantry
Celebrating Volunteers During National Volunteer Week by Stephanie Karpovs
“The heart of a volunteer is not measured in size, but by the depth of the commitment to make a difference in the lives of others.”
—DeAnn Hollis April is National Volunteer Month and is a dedicated time to celebrate the cheerful service and phenomenal work done year-round by volunteers. The continued desire to enhance the lives of others and fill the needs in our community results in an amazing team effort by our various non-profit organizations. Look around and you’ll see the fruits of their labor, transforming SWLA into a vibrant, thriving community for all ages and interests. National Volunteer Week was originally established in 1974 with an executive order from President Richard Nixon. It serves as a nation wide call to foster a culture of service and community impact. It is also an opportunity for organizations to recognize their volunteers for helping them achieve their mission, bring a voice to the cause, and act as change-agents for their corner of the world. The Junior League of Lake Charles, Inc. (JLLC) is an organization of women who have been serving, strengthening, and sustaining the community for more than 80 years. They 40 www.thriveswla.com
leave a legacy of leadership throughout the community, establishing new programs, and turning them over when they are ready to thrive as a stand-alone non-profit. You may have heard of a few: Arts & Humanities Council of SWLA, Calcasieu Community Clinic, The Children’s Museum, Family & Youth Counseling Agency, Imperial Calcasieu Historical Museum, Literacy Council of SWLA, Lake Charles Symphony, etc. Think of the thousands of volunteers that have served and continue to serve our community through these organizations, all of which got their start with the JLLC! This spring, JLLC volunteers are showering the city with love, promoting volunteerism, planting the seeds of leadership, and improving our community through collaborative events focused in the areas of healthy families, literacy, and leadership development. One of the highlights of being a first-year member of the JLLC is the Provisional Class project. They are given an initial budget of $1000, and must work together to plan, promote, and execute a Thrive Magazine for Better Living
project that will benefit our local community. Along the way, they learn about fundraising, marketing, group dynamics, other organizations in SWLA, and how to network with them for a greater impact. This year, they’ve planned a dual project and will complete it by the end of April. First, they’re collaborating with Healthier Southwest Louisiana to implement an educational community garden at F.K. White Middle School. They’re also supplying seating for an outdoor classroom focused around the garden. Second, and with the help of the Happy Hour Rotary Club of Lake Charles, they’re providing free, 24hour access to basic necessities (toiletries, socks, feminine hygiene products, canned goods, etc.) with the Little Free Pantry sites around the city. For more information about how you can help provide supplies for these projects in April, contact the Junior League of Lake Charles, Inc. at 337.436.4025 or visit www.jllc.net.
Thrive's April 2018 Issue