Volunteers in Action: GFWC Menominee Woman’s Club (Michigan), and GFWC Lilburn Woman’s Club (Georgia)
June 2, 2020
GFWC Menominee Woman’s Club (Michigan) places flags on veteran’s graves at Menominee’s Riverside Cemetery for Memorial Day each year. This year, the club decided it could still participate in the project if masks were worn and the social distancing rules were followed. It was a beautiful day on May 21 for volunteers to honor about 400 veterans with flags. A photo of some of our volunteers in their masks is attached.
An additional 2020 Memorial Day project for GFWC Menominee Woman’s Club was to clean the marble gravestones in the original Veterans Memorial area of Menominee’s Riverside Cemetery. Last autumn Pat Krah, Chair of the Public Issues CSP, approached Todd and Christina Schloegel, owners of Menominee Granite Co., with a request for a price estimate to clean all the marble headstones. Their response was :”We will clean the headstones at no cost to your Club. It will be a thank you to your Club which does so much good in our community.” A photo of the newly washed headstones is attached.
Earlier this year, when schools and planned service projects started being canceled or postponed, members of the GFWC Lilburn Woman’s Club (Georgia) scrambled to find creative ways to serve and quickly discovered that their communities needed them more than ever. After holding their first virtual meetings and challenging their Community Service Program (CSP) Chairs to get creative, GFWC Lilburn Woman’s Club President Diane DeGaetano, a retired RN who understands first-hand the importance of protective equipment, encouraged all the seamstresses in the club to start sewing masks for local and state hospitals workers in need. More than 300 masks have been shipped and delivered to date with many more to come. She then asked each CSP to donate a portion of their annual budget to provide a GFWC Federation Day Italian buffet lunch for 30+ respiratory therapists at their local county hospital. Not only were they able to show their appreciation for the medical frontline workers, but they also supported one of their local small business restaurants with the project.
GFWC Lilburn Woman’s Club education committee members identified the need for children’s books at their Title I elementary school after the libraries and schools closed. They coordinated with the principal and administrators to establish a Pop-Up Little Free Library in front of the school stocked with 3 cases of disinfected along with new and used books for readers of all ages. As the children and their parents or guardians walked to school to pick up their free lunches during the week, the school staff would give each child their own book to take home along with their lunch.
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Melanie Carriker 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.
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