The Junior League of Los Angeles provides volunteers and funding to local non-profit agencies for the benefit and enrichment of the Los Angeles community and the development and education of JLLA volunteers. Nearly 600 league volunteers contribute more than 60,000 hours of volunteer work each year to the League’s projects and programs. In addition to the volunteer service that League members contribute to our community, the JLLA has provided millions of dollars over the years to fund programs and agencies that improve the overall well-being of our community. Find out more about the JLLA’s full-time projects by clicking below:
ALLIANCE FOR CHILDREN’S RIGHTS – FOSTERING INDEPENDENCE
Alliance for Children’s Rights is a non-profit legal services and advocacy organization that works to protect the rights of impoverished, abused, and neglected children in LA County. JLLA’s “Fostering Independence” program serves young women ages 14-21 that are currently in or were once in foster care. The program provides life skills classes for youth transitioning out of care.
Friends LA is an incubated project for 2020-2021. Friends of the Children (“Friends LA”) is a national organization that started in Oregon over 20 years ago and recently opened a new chapter in Los Angeles (Friends LA). Friends LA uses “The Generational Change Model” in which they select the children facing the highest risks of poverty, and pair children, ages 4-6, of parenting foster youth with a salaried, professional mentor (a “Friend”) who stays by their side for 12+ years, no matter what. The Friends LA Committee will support the community partner by providing 3-4 half day events with programming to support families of the Friends of the Children: parent programming and child programming for children aged 6-8 (although this will expand in future years as the children in Friends LA get older). Past Friends LA events have included a STEAM Fair with the children and meditation and relaxation exercises with their parents.
Happy Trails for Kids is a new project for 2019-20. Happy Trails provides children ages 7-18 with enriching outdoor adventures, invaluable mentorships, and opportunities to develop leadership skills and prepare for life after foster care. The programs are centered on fostering continuity and a sense of belonging for children to combat the challenges of foster care. The first year of JLLA’s incubated project will include 2 daylong hiking/outdoor events for 40-60 foster youth. The events will be targeted to the older foster youth in the Trails for Success initiative, with scaled-down activities for the younger foster youth who also attend. Events will be spaced evenly throughout the JLLA year. In between events, committee members will meet with each other to plan activities and curriculum for events.
Harvest Home is an incubated project for 2020-2021. Harvest Home is a residential program that serves homeless pregnant women and their babies. All women enter the program while they are pregnant, and stay on average between 3 and 6 months after the birth of their child. They offer a nurturing, structured program aimed at helping each woman make changes in her life in order to attain independence and stability. The Harvest Home Committee coordinates programming and hosts 4 weeknight meetings in the fall and another 4 in the spring to provide encouragement and soft skills training for the pregnant and new mothers. Past events included hosting a baby shower for the residents, a yoga/meditation session, and hosting pot luck dinners.
UNITED FRIENDS OF THE CHILDREN – FOSTERING THE FUTURE
United Friends of the Children is a non-profit dedicated to the premise that foster youth deserve a successful adulthood. Through their Housing and Education programs, foster youth are provided the opportunity to graduate from high school, attend and graduate from college, get a job, find housing, and have a support system that moves them gradually towards independence. JLLA’s United Friends of the Children project builds self-esteem and empowers high school aged foster youth to successfully transition out of the foster care system, while concurrently seeking higher education. Monthly, JLLA members facilitate workshops on topics like career development, self-advocacy, stress management, and financial literacy.