Volunteers in Action: GFWC du Midi Woman’s Club (Alabama), GFWC Valamont Woman’s Club (Tennessee), GFWC Viera Woman’s Club (Florida), GFWC Woman’s Club of Plant City (Florida), and GFWC Junior Women’s Club of Walpole (Massachusetts)
November 19, 2019
The GFWC du Midi Woman’s Club of Huntsville, Alabama honored fallen veterans at the Huntsville Memory Gardens Cemetery. Members prepared and placed six hundred wreaths on the tomb stones of fallen veterans. The wreaths will later be removed to storage in January 2020. Additionally, the GFWC du Midi Woman’s Club designed and mailed post cards to honor the active and retired Veterans and spouses for Veterans Day. A GFWC du Midi Woman’s Club United States Military scrapbook is kept and updated by a club volunteer, which lists each active duty and retired military club member or spouse with a brief history of each.
GFWC Valamont Woman’s Club (Tennessee) members appeared on a local TV show to promote the placement of three flag boxes in the community. The project was shared by another club at the 2019 GFWC Annual Convention in Austin at a Lunch & Learn and brought it back to the GFWC Valamont Woman’s Club. The used flags will be given to the Boy Scout office for training purposes. The project was also highlighted in a newspaper article.
The GFWC Valamont Woman’s Club also had a baby shower for the female soldiers and wives of soldiers at Fort Campbell. Gifts bags full of goodies were brought and donations were made to purchase one big gift as a door prize. Plans are underway for the actual shower in January.
Lastly, the GFWC Valamont Woman’s Club folded patriotic napkins into lotus cups. These napkins will be delivered to the local Veterans’ Center to be filled with candy and handed out to the veterans.
This Veterans Day, November 11, the GFWC Viera Woman’s Club (Florida), and the new Viera chapter of the Guitars for Vets (G4V) non-profit, a wonderful charity supporting veterans who are ailing and injured, teamed up to host a Veterans Day benefit concert.
The concert was held at the Viera Holiday Inn. Seven local bands and artists volunteered their talents and time to be a part of the concert. This was the fourth year for Jill Hansen of the GFWC Viera Woman’s Club to chair this event, working with Brian Donnelly who founded the Viera chapter of G4Vets!
The Guitars for Vets mission is to help veterans find hope in the unlikely wood and strings of an acoustic guitar. The healing power of music helps soldiers cope. “I’m a veteran. I play the guitar and thought this would be a good idea”, says Brian, founder of the Viera chapter of G4Vets. The GFWC Viera Woman’s Club is proud to be a part of this concert fundraiser to raise money to help veterans participate in this structured non-profit program.
This year, 200 tickets were sold and the event included an auction of an acoustic guitar hand-painted by Diane Haroman, a handmade quilt created by VWC member Cheryl Snyder, and a vacation weekend at a Cocoa Beach resort, Blue Wave Cottages. Several local businesses do-nated door prizes and helped to also raise funds. This year almost $4,500 was raised.
Many thanks to Brian Donnelly and his band, Stay Tuned Acoustic Duo, Mike and Tammy Hans, FLORIDADAVE, “Sax Appeal” musician Dave Kujat (Kooj), Rich Brown, and Highway 1 Band.
The GFWC Woman’s Club of Plant City honored veterans and active military officers with a BBQ event on November 10 at the Teco Expo Hall. There were approximately three hundred veterans in attendance with their wives, husbands, or family which brought the total to nearly 500. The GFWC Woman’s Club of Plant City worked hard to provide sponsors, door prizes, and an amazing performance. There were ten World War II veterans in attendance with oldest being one hundred years old. Present at the event were veterans from the Korean War, Vietnam, Dessert Storm, Iraq, and Afghanistan. It was a day of remembering and honor.
The GFWC Junior Woman’s Club of Walpole (Massachusetts), started and closed the Veterans Day weekend with two long-standing events:
JWCW Red, White, and Brew: This is the 9th annual beer, wine and spirits-tasting fundraiser benefits the Walpole Veterans Committee. This group provides veteran assistance and community outreach to the hyper local community. For the last 9 years, funds raised have provided meals, gift cards (food, gas, etc.) set up an educational scholarships.
Veteran’s Day Coffee Reception: The town of Walpole honors its veterans with a ceremony in its town center. This beloved tradition draws a wonderful cross section of the community. Young and old gather to pay their respects. The GFWC Junior Woman’s Club of Walpole hosts a complimentary coffee reception complete with all the trimmings. Refreshments are then delivered to the Walpole VFW.
The GFWC Junior Woman’s Club of Walpole looks forward to these events every year and club members are quick to volunteer in any way they can. It’s a wonderful way to come together as a club and thank local community members!
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Melanie Carriker Stevens
Melanie Carriker Stevens understands GFWC tradition and legacy. Daughter of GFWC Communications and PR Chairman Wendy Carriker, Melanie was inspired to form the GFWC Legacy Woman's Club, which celebrates the dedication of grandmothers, mothers, aunts, sisters, and cousins. The GFWC Legacy Club received its charter at the 2015 GFWC Annual Convention in Memphis.
Success For Survivors Scholarship
Each year, GFWC awards scholarships to help intimate partner abuse survivors obtain a post-secondary education that offers a chance to reshape their future by securing employment and gaining personal independence.
The Rochester Junior Women's Club
The Rochester Junior Women’s Club (Michigan) was established in 1956 with 16 members, and today has over 70 members that always come together to support one another. The club chooses three or four major charities to support and several smaller ones, donating approximately $30,000 each year. In total since its inception, the club has provided more than 1 million hours of community service, and raised more than $928,000 to support their community!