We’re very excited to welcome Susan Danish, Executive Director of The Association of Junior Leagues International, Inc., into our Guest House today. Building better communities through service is something very near and dear to Lilly’s heart and the Junior League and their members embody that ideal so partnering with the Junior League to create a custom Murfee was an easy decision. We asked Susan to tell us a little more about the Junior League so we could share it with all of you…
Tell us a little about the Junior League
The first Junior League was founded in New York City in 1901 and today there are 292 Leagues in four countries – Canada, Mexico, the United Kingdom and the United States. There are 155,000 members. Junior Leagues are organizations of women who, through their volunteer leadership and activities, work to improve their communities. Each Junior League is a volunteer led and run nonprofit organization that assesses the most pressing needs in its community and then either creates a program or partners with other organizations, businesses and / or local government to create or build programs that address those needs. Through the decades Leagues have tackled issues like domestic violence, women and alcohol, early childhood education and literacy, human trafficking, childhood obesity, the environment and more.
Junior League members have gone on to found nonprofits, sit on nonprofit boards, run nonprofits, hold appointed or elected offices. Today in the U.S., there are Junior League members in the Senate and House, and one of our most prominent members was the first women appointed to the U.S. Supreme Court, Sandra Day O’Connor. Junior Leagues are diverse organizations who welcome all women who share their passion for giving back and doing so in a meaningful way.
Why were you excited to partner with Lilly Pulitzer to create the custom scarf?
We are grateful that Lilly Pulitzer partners with and supports women’s organizations through its custom scarf program, and we are proud to be among those organizations now. In areas where there are Lilly Pulitzer stores, we know that Junior Leagues are looking forward to the fundraising opportunities that are being created at the store / League level. The work that each Junior League does is financed through the League’s fundraising efforts, and the partnership with Lilly Pulitzer will help further the League’s impact.
The Junior League Murfee is available in Lilly Pulitzer retail and signature stores nationwide.
Can you tell us about how the Junior League gives back with all of the philanthropic work they do?
Each Junior League addresses the specific needs of a community so the work and the impact vary a great deal. In Houston, for example, the Junior League of Houston created SuperKids, which is a mobile pediatric clinic that travels to neighborhoods to provide needed medical care.
In Atlanta, the Junior League of Atlanta has turned its attention to generating awareness of and ending the commercial and sexual exploitation of children. They have convened business and community leaders, developed a billboard campaign and are advocating for legislation.
The Junior League of Napa-Sonoma, in partnership with VOICES (Voice Our Independent Choices for Emancipation Support) works to support youth who have transitioned out of foster care once turning 18.
How can people find out more about the Junior League or about becoming a member?
We encourage women to go to The Association of Junior Leagues International, Inc. website, www.ajli.org, where they can learn about the work of the Junior Leagues and find the contact information for a League in their area.