For years, and even today, the stereotype of the Junior League has been one of an organization comprised of wealthy white women wearing pearls and drinking lots of sweet tea. This stereotype is not only antiquated, but it takes away from the work these women are doing in our community, nation, and even internationally.
Meet the real Junior League of Charlotte.
The Junior League of Charlotte, Inc. (JLC), was founded in 1926 when 30 women wanted to go outside of their homes and provide support for local children and families in need, to patron the arts, and to advocate for education.
“A group of thirty Charlotte women identified a need in the community, came together to volunteer their time and talents to find a solution, and led efforts to found the city’s first Baby Home to provide a safe place for children without parents. This began the Junior League of Charlotte and its legacy of leadership and service” said Tricia Wilson Magee, 2019-2020 JLC President.
From the Charlotte Nature Museum to Discovery Place to the Levine Children’s Hospital Family Resource Center, the JLC has left a legacy in Charlotte.
Here are some facts about how the JLC has impacted the Queen City:
- More than 1.5 million volunteer hours within the Charlotte community
- More than $13.5 million in contributions to the Charlotte community
- Helped found and support the following organizations:
- The Children’s Theatre of Charlotte
- Discovery Place
- The Charlotte Nature Museum
- Baby Home
- The Council for Children’s Rights
- Charlotte Speech & Hearing
- Thompson Child Development Center
- Levine Children’s Hospital Family Resource Center
- Reid Park Academy Community School
All ages, races, and religions comprise the JLC. From the east side to the west side, from Uptown to SouthPark, and from Huntersville to Mooresville, members live all over Charlotte and surrounding areas. The majority of active members are between the ages of 23 and 54. Members are white, black, Asian, and Hispanic. It is a 50/50 split when it comes to being married or being single. Almost 90% of members are professionals employed by companies or are self-employed. Members have run for and been elected to public office, started businesses, and founded nonprofits.
Today the JLC has more than 1,500 members and last year contributed more than 28,560 volunteer hours, which equals a value of $690,866.
For the 2019-2020 year, the JLC works with Alexander Youth Network, Baby Bundles, Center for Community Transitions, Digi-bridge, Promising Pages, Heart Math Tutoring, and Second Hand Harvest to name a few.
For over 90 years the JLC has identified problems in the community, rolled up their sleeves and gotten work done. And they did this through hard work, determination, and possibly fueled on sweet tea.