Volunteers in Action: GFWC Fowler Progress Club and GFWC Virginia
March 1, 2022
GFWC Fowler Progress Club
Members of GFWC Fowler Progress Club (Colorado) helped organize a Healthy Relationships program to educate local high school seniors.
The GFWC Fowler Progress Club (Colorado) is working to raise awareness and prevent domestic and teen dating violence among young people in their community. The club began a partnership with the Arkansas Valley Resource Center (AVRC) in 2019 and continue to work with them in various ways today. AVRC is a crisis intervention agency for three counties that provides shelter, counseling, and support services for survivors of domestic violence and other crimes.
The club’s secretary, Angela Gordon, explained members worked with AVRC and the local high school to start an education program for the senior class about healthy relationships. Now, the yearly awareness session presents an opportunity for students to learn about what to look for to recognize an unhealthy or unsafe relationship and how to find and reach out for help if it is ever needed.
The Healthy Relationship program educates students on how to define a safe relationship. It’s an interactive session where real-life examples are shared and the students learn how life elsewhere can be very different than the community they grew up in.
Angela said as these seniors graduate and potentially move away from their small, rural community, she hopes they carry this basic knowledge with them always.
“I think it’s important for young people in general to have this knowledge. It’s easy to feel comfortable with the people you grew up with, but in a small area in particular, they need to know,” Angela said. “…Once it’s in their head, it will come back if they need it.”
She noted this program has been very well received by the students and faculty and they look forward to continuing it well into the future. In addition to helping start this program, clubwomen host fundraisers and help sponsor events to benefit AVRC.
GFWC Virginia clubwomen attended a Legislation Day event to learn more about the legislative process and advocacy.
Clubwomen from 32 different GFWC Virginia clubs participated in a successful Legislation Day in February as they learned more about the legislative and political process. GFWC Virginia State President Dale Fisher explained one of the goals of the event was to introduce clubwomen to legislators and to share information with these government officials about what GFWC does and how they are working to create positive change in their communities through volunteer service and advocacy.
During the Legislation Day event, guests gathered for a breakfast that featured the Honorable Winsome Earle-Sears, Lieutenant Governor of the Commonwealth of Virginia, as guest speaker. A veteran and businesswoman, Earle-Sears shares GFWC’s commitment to community service and has worked as a director of a women’s homeless shelter and led a men’s prison ministry. Following the breakfast and program, members had the chance to meet with their delegates and senators, and visited the House and Senate chambers.
Dale said the event was a good opportunity for clubwomen to begin to think about future legislative projects and volunteerism and how they can support GFWC’s Legislative Action Center.
“The ladies thoroughly enjoyed seeing the political process at work,” she said. “Overall, I think it sparked everybody’s enthusiasm.”
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