News & Notes – August 2, 2018

Military Women Initiative

One of the Seven Grand Initiatives for the 2018-2020 Administration is a focus on women in the military. Their role has expanded immensely over time, and as more opportunities open up, more women join every year. With Labor Day being a month away, let’s recognize the contributions made by women who serve and also those who have made sacrifices so their spouses can serve. Women in the military truly hold some of the most important jobs! Here are a few ways you can give women in the military the honor they deserve:

Create Mommy Bags – Most VA Hospitals are not equipped for mothers-to-be. You can help pregnant women veterans feel supported and loved by donating mommy bags to military hospitals. The bags can hold items she’ll need for the baby, such as diapers and wipes, but also items like lotion, nail polish, and candy so she can feel a little TLC during her pregnancy.

“Thank You, Your Bill Has Been Paid.” – A little kindness goes a long way. If you see a woman in a military uniform, ask the waiter if you can pay for her meal. Your club can create accompanying cards that read, “Thank you, your bill has been paid!” so the solider will feel appreciated.

Cinderella Closet – Collect ball gowns and formal attire for women living on military bases. Whether they are active duty or married to someone who is, women on military bases deserve luxury once in a while. There are many formal military functions, and not every woman who lives on a base has the time or means to dress up. By giving them access to a Cinderella Closet, they can have a night of their dreams.

Women have worked hard to earn their place in military roles, and you can help honor that with projects that will make them feel even more respected and acknowledged.

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2016-2018 Administration Reports

Did you miss the 2016-2018 Administration Reports that were published in the July+August issue of Clubwoman Magazine? No fear! You can find all the reports under “A” on the GFWC Resources page.

Celebrate International Youth Day

August 12th is International Youth Day, which was created by the United Nations to bring awareness to the specific issues that youth face around the world. Each year they choose a theme, and 2018’s theme is “Safe Spaces for Youth.” It draws attention to the need for spaces (from physical and civic spaces to digital spaces) where youth can feel free and comfortable to engage with each other and with the community, regardless of their identity.

If you sponsor a Juniorette club, encourage them to start a dialogue about what kind of spaces they might be lacking in their lives, schools, and communities. Once they see the missing gaps, they can help fill them in!

MLK Day of Service Ideas

One of the grand initiatives for the 2018-2020 Administration is to have 1,000 clubs participate in the Martin Luther King, Jr. Day of Service on January 21, 2019 and January 20, 2020. Each week in News & Notes we will share a new project idea for how you can contribute to your community that day. Take notes on the ideas you like and present them at your club meeting!

Make Fleece Blankets and Pillows

Making no-sew blankets and pillows are a great way for you and your family or you and your club to bond while helping those in need. Print off instructions, grab some fabric, and get started on making blankets and pillows that you can donate to those in need this winter.

Babs in the News

In case you missed the announcement on the GFWC Facebook page last week, Babs, the Canine Companions for Independence dog named in honor of our 50th GFWC International President Babs J. Condon, was recently in the news for all of her hard work bringing smiles to patients at the Mt. Washington Pediatric Hospital. But don’t take our word for it; you can watch the video and see for yourself!

Get Reinvigorated for Recruitment

Start the new club year in full force by reading the How to Recruit New GFWC Members, which is under H on the GFWC Resources page. The 2018-2020 Recruitment campaign reminds us that we are “United by Our Diversity.” Be creative and inclusive with your recruitment methods, and you’ll be sure to bring more and more helping hands into your club. Don’t forget that your club can apply for our seasonal membership grants to help bring your recruitment ideas to life. Applications must be received by the following dates for membership events occurring in the designated seasonal recruitment cycle:

Fall: September 1, 2018
Winter: December 1, 2018
Spring: March 1, 2019
Summer: June 1, 2019

Legislative Action Corner

VAWA Bill Introduced In House of Representatives

It is time for GFWC to seek co-sponsors for H.R.6545, the Violence Against Women Act of 2018, introduced July 26. This reauthorization bill builds on the success of the 2013 legislation and addresses the needs of survivors as well as supports community programs and services. Over the last several months, the National Task Force to End Sexual & Domestic Violence has worked with Members to draft the bill.

Among the highlights, H.R. 6545 increases investment in sexual violence prevention programs to address the skyrocketing need and demand for community prevention programs; enables tribes to prosecute non-native offenders of sexual assault, trafficking, stalking, and child abuse; updates definitions including domestic violence, forced child marriage, and technological abuse; provides protections for incarcerated survivors; strengthens public housing protections for survivors including those seeking housing transfers based on safety concerns; strengthens privacy protections; expands VAWA programs’ ability to respond to sexual harassment; and improves enforcement of current federal domestic violence related firearms laws and closes loopholes to reduce firearms involved abuse and intimate partner homicide.

It is time for Congress to pass a strong bill that protects all survivors and prevents domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, and stalking in our communities. The VAWA programs authorized in 2013 must be reauthorized by September 30, 2018. The time is NOW! Join the GFWC Legislatve Action Center and support VAWA Reauthorization!

Parliamentary Pointers

by GFWC Parliamentarian Deen J. Meloro

Another week of Bylaws~

ARTICLE V. Meetings This section should list the day the meetings will be held, such as the “third Wednesday of the month.” You might want to add, “unless otherwise ordered by the Executive Board” (or Board of Directors or whatever is appropriate for your group.) The time and place of the meeting can be listed in the Standing Rules since those are easier to change. You may also wish to designate which of the meetings is the “Annual Meeting.” In most cases, this is the day when officers are elected and annual reports are read or turned in by all officers, departments, and committees.

Another section of this article should cover “Special Meetings.” It should state who can call a special meeting, how much notice is required before a special meeting may be convened, and what the quorum is for the meeting. It should be noted that the only business that may take place during the special meetings is that which is stated in the call to the special meeting.

If these are state bylaws, there should also be a section on Convention and others on any other meetings held statewide each year, such as Summer Meeting, Fall Conference, etc. There should be notification of who determines the particulars of each meeting, such as fee and location, as well as who makes the arrangements for these meetings. In the case of Convention, the quorum needed to conduct business should be stated.

ARTICLE VI. Executive Board, also known as Board of Directors, Board of Managers, Board of Trustees, Board of Governors, Administrative Council, etc. This is a group of members that is entrusted with administrative authority to conduct necessary business between meetings of the organization.

This article needs to establish who serves in this group, the powers of this group, and the individual responsibilities of each member of the group. It needs to state when the group meets, and how special meetings are called, as above. It is important to note that the Executive Board may never alter a decision of the organization unless expressly authorized to do so by the bylaws or by the society as a whole. Almost every organization states that there needs to be more elected members than appointed members of the Board. This is done so that a President cannot fill Board appointments with friends and then push through her personal agenda.

L-R: Jody Dean GFWC Millington Junior Women’s Club President, Kathleen Sweeney, Executive Director/ Forensic Interviewer The Child Advocacy Center of Tuscola County, Dawn Richey COLOR ME BLUE Project Chairman. 

Volunteers in Action

This week’s Volunteers in Action are the GFWC Millington Junior Women’s Club (Michigan), who completed an amazing “Color Me Blue” project. You can read all about it on their new member profile on the GFWC Website!

Have a story you want to share? Send your photos and a description of the project to to be considered for our next Volunteers in Action member profile.

GFWC Marketplace: GFWC Address Labels

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*Due to the customization required for this product, please allow 4-6 weeks for delivery.

**Shipping included in cost. Shipped separately via UPS, which does not ship to P.O. Boxes.

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