2014-15 – The JSLB introduced a successful new fundraising project, Kitchen Tour, which raised over $30,000. Guests toured 10 new and newly renovated kitchens in the Shreveport area, sampled recipes from League cookbooks, and had the chance to win a kitchen makeover. The Junior League also began a new community project, Girls’/Women’s Institute (now known as MAGIC). JLSB volunteers meet with high school girls who attend an after-school teen program at the Volunteers of America Highland Center and teach participants about self defense, street smarts, Internet safety, health and fitness, planning for the future, and self esteem. The JLSB narrowed the focus of its Meeting with a Mission project and partnered exclusively with Westwood Elementary for the entire school year. League volunteers helped with open house, celebrated students’ achievements with new bicycles, read to students, and honored Westwood’s teachers.
2013-14 – The Junior League initiated a new community project, Safe Sitter, which prepares middle-school-aged children to be effectively trained babysitters. JLSB members presented a program that taught participants about the basics of child care, first aid, the Heimlich maneuver, general safety, and how to start their own babysitting businesses. The League also partnered with the Community Foundation and participated in the inaugural Give for Good Day. During this 24-hour online giving challenge, the JLSB raised over $8,500.
2012-13 – The JLSB saw its 80th Anniversary and celebrated by raising funds to plant 80 trees along Clyde Fant Parkway. Additionally, JLSB members went above and beyond their League commitments to serve 2,640 extra hours in the community. The League also launched two new community projects, Between the Lines and Domestic Violence Education and Prevention. Between the Lines promotes literacy and strengthens family bonds between incarcerated parents and their children. Each incarcerated parent chooses a book for his child, JLSB members make a recording of the parent reading the book aloud, and then they gift-wrap and send the book and recording to the child. The Junior League also partnered with Providence House for the Domestic Violence Education project, and members educated the community about domestic violence and provided programs and services to victims of domestic violence.
2011-12 – The Junior League launched two new community projects, Health Literacy Summer Program and Health Literacy Year-Long Project. These projects impacted over 75 children at West Shreveport Elementary as League members helped promote healthy lifestyle choices by focusing on topics including exercise and fitness, tobacco use prevention, animal safety, nutrition awareness, safety and injury prevention, and oral health. The JLSB also restarted the Done in a Day placement, which helped 10 nonprofits execute different programs in the community. The Provisional class presented the Provisional Project, which focused on the health and wellness of the entire family. The Junior League also held its first-ever Running for a Cause event at Independence Stadium.
2010-11 – JLSB members served the community in many placements including Revel Artist for a Day, Kids in the Kitchen Revel and Kids in the Kitchen Spring, Paired Reading, Super Safety Saturday, and Bingo at LSUHSC and Shriner’s Hospital. The JLSB was awarded the Volunteer of the Year Award at the Shriner’s Children’s Hospital Volunteer Appreciation Banquet for its introduction of and participation in the Bingo program. This was the first year the award was given to an organization instead of an individual.
2008-09 – The Junior League played a major role in making the vision of Sheriff’s Safety Town a reality and celebrated its groundbreaking. The 75th Anniversary Project Committee, made up of seven past presidents, researched local projects for consideration as the JLSB’s 75th Anniversary Project and recipient of its $75,000 Anniversary Gift. Members voted Sheriff’s Safety Town as the 75th Anniversary recipient with plans to build a Junior League Pavilion at the facility and for League volunteers to coordinate Saturday Safety Clinics open to the public.
2005-06 – GREAT – The Greenwood Equine Assisted Therapy (GREAT) program was established. Operated by the ARC, an association for developmentally disabled citizens, at the Lickskillet Ranch in Greenwood, GREAT gives children ages 5 to 12 the opportunity to participate in a variety of activities from horseback riding to building birdhouses. Not all children who attend the camp have developmental disabilities. In the two-week placement, Junior League volunteers facilitated the arts and crafts portion of each day.
After Hurricane Katrina devastated New Orleans and the Gulf Coast, League members went immediately to work within our community to help at emergency shelters, and they donated items as well as time to help comfort the dislocated families. Members staffed the Relief Relay Center at the former South Park Mall and also volunteered at the Humane Society. The Strategic Planning Committee made grants to many organizations that had special needs due to the increase in services provided for hurricane relief. These included the Samaritan Counseling Center, Providence House, LSU Health Sciences Center Social Services Department, Rutherford House, and the YWCA.
1995-96 – The Junior League’s gang awareness video was completed and received a Gold Addy Award locally. Also, League members voted to staff the Pepsi booths at the Red River Revel without receiving a percentage of the profits as a 20th anniversary gift to the Revel.
1994-95 – The League proudly received the Philanthropic Organization of the Year Award from the National Society of Fundraising Executives.
1993-94 – The Junior League’s 60th Anniversary gift, Kidspace, was a part of the exhibits when Sci-Port opened its doors. The Junior League of Shreveport was the proud recipient of the Volunteers of America Humanitarian Award because of its support monetarily and with trained volunteers.
1992-93 – “Celebrating 60 Years Of Success” was the theme of this League year. The League honored the community with a gift of $60,000 directed toward the Sci-Port Discovery Center Children’s Exhibit. New community projects included School Away From School and a Teen Health Fair.
1990 – Three new projects launched this year: Schumpert Adult Day Health Center, Literature to Life, and the Mendez Program of Substance Abuse Awareness. The Provisional class completed two community projects as part of their League training. One group trouped to local schools with a puppet show educating students about the problems encountered by children with cancer, and another group helped secure volunteers to work with Sci-Port’s Dinosaurs Alive exhibit.
1989 – The League expanded its community programming by adding two new projects: Volunteers of America’s Pregnancy Service Center and Call 3. Also, the Public Affairs Committee heightened members’ awareness on the issue of heavy rock music.
1986 – The Junior League of Shreveport funded three new projects: Shriner’s Hospital’s PALS (Play and Learn at Shriner’s) program, Juvenile Justice, and Substance Abuse – MAD.
1985 – New projects included McDade House, Louisiana State Exhibit Museum, and the League’s largest coalition effort ever, the LightHouse. Volunteers of America’s LightHouse reaches out to families struggling with poverty, illiteracy and joblessness. The LightHouse offers a wide range of programs serving children, adolescents, and their families. Its goals are educational achievement, economic self-sufficiency, and productive citizenship.
1980 – CONTAC – This academic internship program (CONTAC), funded by a grant from Aetna Insurance Company, provided on-the-job experiences for high school students in such diverse fields as law, banking, computer science, physical medicine, and journalism.
1978 – PIONEER HERITAGE CENTER – A joint project of the Junior League and LSUS, the center depicts pioneer life in Northwest Louisiana in the early 1800s. The center comprises seven plantation structures, including the Thrasher House (a log dogtrot) and Caspiana House (the big house from Caspiana Plantation), both listed on the National Register of Historic Places; a detached kitchen; a log single pen blacksmith shop; a doctor’s office; a commissary; and a river front mission. A hands-on teaching facility, the center demonstrates to hundreds of Caddo, Bossier, DeSoto and Natchitoches Parish students how early settlers lived.
1977 – YOUTH ADVOCATES – This project was an outgrowth of a 1976 Youth Services fact-finding committee appointed by Mayors Allen and Cathey to study the needs of area youth. It was a community-based, independent, nonprofit organization that provided immediate and referral services for troubled youths.
1977 – CASPIANA HOUSE – Research into the time and life in Northwest Louisiana between 1850 and 1900 began. This research provided the foundation for the establishment of the Pioneer Heritage Center at LSUS in the fall of 1978.
1976 – RED RIVER REVEL – This “Celebration of the Arts” is an eight-day arts festival for the ArkLaTex held in October in Festival Plaza. Winner of the 1988 President’s Volunteer Action Award, the Revel began in 1976 as the League’s Bicentennial gift to the community. The first Revel was co-sponsored with the Shreveport Regional Bicentennial Commission. The Revel now attracts more than 200,000 people to Shreveport-Bossier and has a $10 million impact annually on the economy.
1974 – RUTHERFORD HOUSE – The Junior League committed $24,000 to start Rutherford House, a residential treatment center for eight to 10 girls between the ages of 12 and 17 who had come to the attention of the juvenile justice system in our area. In August 1975, Rutherford House, Inc. expanded to include a home for boys called Olive Branch. It housed 10 boys. In the spring of 1976, Rutherford House II opened for girls. This center had residency facilities for 12 girls. The average term of residence for boys and girls was four months, and follow-up help was provided for an indefinite period. Rutherford House is still in operation.
1973 – MOLLIE E. WEBB SPEECH AND HEARING CENTER – This center grew out of Junior League studies that established the need for a comprehensive facility for treatment and diagnostic services for children and adults with speech or hearing impairments and other communicative disorders. The center operates to this day.
1969 – SUITCASE MUSEUM – Beginning in 1969, docents for the Suitcase Museum presented to 6th-grade students in Caddo Parish schools an art appreciation study that covered the Ancient Egyptian period through the Renaissance. Each volunteer introduced a suitcase containing an assortment of paintings, prints, and artifacts. The Isaac Delgado Museum of Art in New Orleans provided original pieces, and accurate reproductions completed the suitcases. In 1972 the Art Guild agreed to co-fund this program. It became the Art in Education program in which approximately 2,000 students from Caddo Parish schools and seven private schools viewed a traveling exhibit and toured the R.S. Barnwell Memorial Garden & Art Center.
1968 – LEARNING DISABILITIES – In the spring of 1968, the Caddo Parish School Board approved the recommendation of the Junior League and the Council of Jewish Women to initiate two programs for children with learning disabilities. The first, designed to help children already in school and experiencing difficulty, began in the fall of 1969 at South Highland School. Volunteers, under professional supervision, worked with students three days a week. The second program, called the Developmental First Grade, began in two schools in the fall of 1970 and was designed to screen, through testing of kindergarten children, students who might experience academic difficulties in the coming school years. The school board assumed responsibility for administering this program in 1972.
1968 – PARENTS’ LEAGUE – The Parents’ League was founded in 1968 to combat the “too much, too soon” pattern that had developed with regard to children, a byproduct of our affluent society. The Parents’ League promoted the ideas that the primary responsibility for children’s behavior begins and remains in the home; that parents have a responsibility to see that there is a wholesome community for their children; that youngsters’ social activities should be appropriate for their ages; and that families taking the same stand can work together for a better community.
1967 – VOLUNTEER SERVICES BUREAU/VOLUNTARY ACTION CENTER – The VSB was established after a joint study by the Community Council and the Junior League that determined the need for a clearinghouse for volunteers. In December 1971, the VSB became a Voluntary Action Center, joining a national network of independent local centers dedicated to the promotion of voluntary action to meet urgent local needs. The Bureau recruits volunteers and refers them for placement; it seeks to find and help organize new opportunities for volunteers to serve; and it assists agencies or groups in setting up new programs using volunteers. The VSB/VAC was funded by the Junior League and United Way.
1967 – MOTOR-LANGUAGE PERCEPTION – Summer Clinics were held in 1967-69 for children with mild learning disabilities. A speech pathologist, occupational therapists, and special education teachers worked with the children attending the six-week programs.
1966 – COUNCIL FOR THE AGING – The problems of the aging were becoming apparent in Shreveport in 1960, and the League joined the Community Council of Caddo and Bossier Parishes in an extensive survey of resources available to the elderly. As a result of these findings, the Council for the Aging was established in 1966.
1961 – ALEXANDER SPEECH CENTER – In 1961, the Junior League established the Speech Correction Center, now the Alexander Speech Center, for children with aphasia. It operated in cooperation with the local school system, and in 1968, the Caddo Parish School Board assumed responsibility for its operation.
1956 – CADDO-BOSSIER ASSOCIATION FOR RETARDED CHILDREN (C-BARC) – The Junior League adopted the C-BARC occupation center as a project in 1956 in order to provide evaluation, training, and services for intellectually and developmentally impaired people who were capable of eventually becoming self-supporting citizens in the community. Because of matching federal funds, C-BARC was able to provide training for people between the ages of 16 and 36. For those subjects able to work in a typical environment, training is provided along with job placement and social contact. Others in the community assumed this project in 1960. C-BARC is now known as The Arc of Caddo-Bossier and is a United Way Agency.
1951 – DEAF-ORAL PROJECT – Discovering a paucity of training for hearing impaired children, the Junior League established a Deaf-Oral Clinic at the Line Avenue School and West Shreveport Elementary. League members worked with the children in the clinic, assisting them with class activities and basic lip reading. In 1955, the League turned this project over to the Caddo Parish School Board, although League members still served as volunteers, assisting the trained therapists with the children.
1947 – CHILD GUIDANCE CENTER – The Caddo Parish Mental Hygiene Society and the League cooperated in 1946 on a survey to evaluate the community’s health needs. The following year, the Junior League agreed to sponsor, for a one-year demonstration period, a child guidance center with a part-time staff. A year later, the center opened with a psychiatrist spending one day a week there and a full-time case worker. The Community Chest accepted the Guidance Center in 1952.
1945 – LIBRARY WORK – League members processed, catalogued, and worked in the city’s only circulating library. South Highland School took over this service in 1953.
1944 – COUNCIL OF SOCIAL AGENCIES – The Junior League organized a Council of Social Agencies with the cooperation of the Community Fund Board. The League financed the Council for three years. It became the Community Council of Caddo and Bossier Parishes in 1952.
1936 – CHILDREN’S SERVICE BUREAU – The Junior League of Shreveport, Inc. undertook its first major project: the establishment of the Children’s Service Bureau, now called the Family and Children’s Service Bureau, to provide casework and social work to needy children and their families. The community assumed responsibility for this service in 1942.
1933 – The Junior Service League’s first project was the organization, with the help of other community leaders, of the Shreveport Family Welfare Association, which later formed the nucleus of the Community Chest, now known as the United Way. It was this constructive action that brought about the acceptance of the Junior Service League into membership in the Association of Junior Leagues of America in February 1933.
1930 – On October 17, 1930, in the St. Mark’s Parish House, 98 young women heard the reading of the proposed constitution and bylaws of the Junior Service League, which three years later became the Junior League of Shreveport, Inc. Instrumental in organizing the group were Mrs. Douglas A. Lee, Mrs. S.G. Sample, and Mrs. Wesley E. Wheless. Mrs. Wiltz Ledbetter and Miss Elsie Jones assisted in organizing procedure. The group concentrated primarily on social service. Among its first activities were social casework, the maintenance of two clothing centers for the needy, bookbinding, and Braille transcription.