News & Notes: November 10, 2021


November 10, 2021

View our Important Dates page for upcoming events and milestones.

America Recycles Day is November 15

By Karen Martinek, Environment Community Service Program Chairman

Do you recycle correctly? America Recycles Day, spearheaded by Keep America Beautiful, is a day to become more aware of how and when to recycle.

Many of us are very hopeful about what can be recycled. Commingling non-recyclable items with fully recyclable ones could contaminate recycling loads. But recycling rules are region-specific, so it is difficult to generalize what items to place in your recycle bin. The following items should never be placed in your recycle bin: plastic bags, soft plastics, food waste, clothes/fabric, Styrofoam, CDs, DVDs, windows, drinking glasses, mobile phones, crockery, diapers, and foam mailers. Items that can always be recycled include: paper, cardboard, tin and aluminum cans, glass, and plastic types #1 and #2.

Lids on or Lids Off?

Lids and bottles are made from various types of plastics that melt at different temperatures. In the past, we were told to remove the lids. Now, most recycling centers have the ability to process lids and say you should leave them on. Some charities also recycle plastic lids, so another option is to look for one with a nearby drop-off site.

Other recycling opportunities exist. Many were closed at the start of the pandemic but are now reopening. There are collection sites for plastic bags at grocery and department stores. If you aren’t reusing your plastic bags or making plaryn, make sure you drop them in these bins. Many are working directly with Trex Co., which uses plastic in their landscape materials. Natural corks are recycled through ReCork, or the Cork Club. For other items not easily recycled by your local Recycle Center, TerraCycle has many options to ship donated items to its recycling facility at no cost.

Each of us can take the Keep America Beautiful Pledge this America Recycles Day 2021 to:

  1. Learn. What materials are collected for recycling in my community?
  2. Act. Within the next month, I will reduce the amount of waste I produce. I will recycle more and I will buy products made with recycled content.

Another step you can take is to share your club’s great work with others. Submit your America Recycles Day project success story to to be considered for the GFWC Blog. The more clubs that get involved, the more awareness we can raise about the importance of recycling plastics.

Enjoy the Festive Season at the 2021 GFWC Holiday Open House

On December 8, GFWC International President Marian St.Clair will welcome clubwomen to a festive day of cheer at the 2021 GFWC Holiday Open House events. This will be a fun and exciting opportunity for you to celebrate the giving season and experience a bit of holiday magic at GFWC Headquarters at 1734 N St. NW, Washington D.C. Sign up to attend one of the two scheduled receptions—from 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 noon ET or from 1:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. ET. Attendance will be limited at the receptions and either a vaccination card or COVID-19 test within 72 hours is required for our guests safety.

As communities continue to work together to overcome and persevere through the challenges we have faced during the past two years, there’s no better time to come together to spread some cheerfulness and goodwill. Attendees of the 2021 GFWC Holiday Open House will have the opportunity to share success stories and mingle with their fellow clubwomen while enjoying this year’s theme, Good Tidings of Comfort and Joy. The holiday season is a wonderful reminder of the happiness we receive from encouraging and supporting those around us.

Registration will close at 12:00 noon ET on December 1. Register today through the GFWC Member Portal.

If you are unable to attend the in-person events, but still want to experience the joy of the holidays at GFWC Headquarters, at 8 a.m. ET on December 1 you can register to receive a link to the remote Holiday Open House that will launch at 5 p.m. ET on December 15. Registration for viewing the remote event will close at 12:00 noon ET on December 31.

Volunteers in Action

This week’s GFWC Blog features GFWC High Springs New Century Woman’s Club, Inc. (Florida), GFWC Beverly Hills Junior Woman’s Club (Illinois), and Village Improvement Association of Rehoboth Beach (Delaware). In recognition of Advocates for Children Week from October 24-30, several clubs organized projects to provide support and encouragement to children in their communities. Read how clubwomen created “friendship rocks” for kids of all ages, collected Halloween costumes for children in need, and donated gift bags to a local pediatric hospice program.

Have a success story to tell? Email to have you club project considered for the GFWC Blog.

GFWC Headquarters Update

GFWC welcomes Cheri Meyer as the new Chief of Operations. Cheri is a versatile leader and strategist with many years of experience in the nonprofit sector. We are excited she has joined us! Cheri’s email is


By Hope Royer, WHRC Committee Chairman

When you think of a veteran, what comes to mind? Is it an older gentleman in a baseball cap with yellow stitching that reads Vietnam Vet? Is it someone younger who displays their proud service on their car with a bumper sticker or veteran license plate? Do you still have a picture of a man in your mind, even though there’s a woman in the driver’s seat? The fact is that many women are not readily seen as veterans; they don’t fit the mold of what many first think of when picturing a U.S. veteran (

On June 12, 2021, retired Chief Warrant Officer 5 Phyllis Wilson, President of the Military Women’s Memorial, and retired Lieutenant General Patricia Horoho, former U.S. Army Surgeon General, unveiled a special brooch intended to be worn by military women, past and present, as a symbol of their selfless service. The event held at the Military Women’s Memorial marked the 73rd anniversary of the Women’s Armed Services Integration Act, which enabled military women to join the active duty component of each branch of the service.

Designed by “the nation’s jeweler” Ann Hand, the “Women of Valor” brooch is in the shape of a forget-me-not flower. Its purple petals represent all the services. The “V” of each leaf represents the valor of our women service members. A pearl in the center represents the purity of their mission.

Take time this Veterans Day, and throughout the year, to recognize past and present women of valor in your club and in your community. The brooch and lapel pins are available for purchase online at


Right after Veterans Day, the countdown to the world’s biggest day of generosity will begin!

GivingTuesday was created in 2012 as a day that encourages people to do good. Since then, it has grown into a global movement that inspires people to give, collaborate, and celebrate generosity. Join this year’s celebration on November 30, and make a donation to GFWC’s Women’s History and Resource Center, become a friend of the WHRC, or contribute to the Capital Campaign or the Success for Survivors Scholarship.

Watch All Five Convention Workshop Webinars by November 30

Learn how to effectively advocate for issues in a nonpartisan way and how to educate youth about the early signs of an unhealthy relationship. Provide tools for developing club and state leaders, growing a positive club culture, and creating a brand and website that will make your club stand out in the community. Five popular 2021 Convention Workshops have been modified for viewing at home and are available today for just $25.

The following pre-recorded sessions, with handouts, include:

  • Communications and PR: Let’s Talk About Branding…And Your Club Website!
  • Leadership: Tools for Developing and Encouraging Leaders
  • Legislation/Public Policy: Staying Nonpartisan in a Partisan Time
  • Membership: Mirror, Mirror on the Wall
  • Signature Program: Fifty Ways to Make a Difference

Register tomorrow so that you can have as much time as possible to watch all five webinars. After registering, you will receive an email with links to view each webinar until November 30. Registration and viewing for this five-webinar package closes November 30.

Your Teen Healthy Relationship Forums To-Do List

By Trisha Schafer, Teen Dating Violence Advisor

Why are Healthy Relationship Forums necessary? For one out of 10 teens, abuse is a very real part of dating relationships. If we, GFWC, can help young people to learn about healthy relationships and behaviors now, we can lower the statistics of victims in the future!

Your club’s first steps:

  1. Research and locate your local domestic/sexual violence agency or rape crisis center. Your sexual violence agency program staff are the ones that are most likely to be present at these types of forums.
  2. Scroll to the bottom of the home page of Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network’s (RAINN’s) website and click “Helping Survivors,” and then the “local service providers” link under “Victim Services.” To find your state agency, visit the National Sexual Violence Resource Center’s (NSVRC’s) website. You can also try putting your state name in front of (example: ICASA – Illinois Coalition Against Sexual Abuse).
  3. Call or make a visit to your agency about scheduling/sponsoring a Teen Dating Violence, Awareness, and Prevention Forum for your school or community center.
  4. Let your agency contact person know that your club may be willing to sponsor Healthy Relationship Groups for teens who have been involved in unhealthy dating relationships or that are having difficulties. School guidance counselors are a great help with recommending students that will benefit from these groups.
  5. Utilize the tools in the GFWC Member Portal Digital Library under “C” Resources for “Challenge Projects.” Circulate the Signature Program Challenge Project flyer to your members to spark conversation about how your club can help prevent teen dating abuse and other challenges that teens face. Fill in the press release template with your club’s information and submit to local media outlets. Share the social media graphic (pictured above) on your club’s Facebook page and other platforms. And make copies of the rack card to hand out at your Forum.
  6. Spread the word at schools, community and teen centers, and churches.
  7. Check in with the partnering agency. They may need your help with a sign-in table, refreshments, icebreakers, and pre- and post-Forum evaluations (handing them out and collecting).
  8. Be sure to follow up with your agency contact a few weeks later to see how you can assist further.

Help stop teen dating violence before it starts by promoting healthy relationship programs that will give our youth social-emotional learning that teaches them skills to use throughout adulthood. If you have questions or need help with this to-do list, please contact one of the GFWC Signature Program Committee Members listed in the Club Manual, also available in the Digital Library’s “C” Resources.

Shining a Spotlight on Club Presidents

Do you know a club president who inspires you to make your community a better place through volunteerism and innovative club projects every day? Help us highlight their commitment to GFWC by nominating her to be featured on Our “Featured Member” profiles tell the stories of club presidents who are dedicated to making a difference through community service. You can also nominate yourself if you are a club president interested in sharing your Federation story.To nominate someone, email Publications and Project Manager Taylor Fussman. Clubwomen selected to participate in this project will be interviewed over the phone or Zoom for approximately 30 minutes about their background with GFWC, why they enjoy volunteering, and what volunteerism means to them. We want these interviews to be a fun experience and opportunity for members to tell us what they enjoy about being part of this group of incredible women.

GFWC Marketplace: Headquarters Notebook

This spiral-bound notebook features a 1929 cover of General Federation News that has a beautiful illustration of GFWC Headquarters at 1734 N St. NW in Washington, D.C. Whether you’re planning future projects or taking notes at meetings, this notebook is an excellent addition to any clubwoman’s toolkit. Order yours today.

There could be some mail service delays throughout the pandemic. To speed up processing of your order, we request that you pay for your order at time of purchase in the Member Portal. For information on mail service in your area, visit the USPS Service Alerts page.