Ann Arbor’s affiliation with the Junior League began in 1982, when three women from the Junior League of Birmingham decided they would start a chapter in Ann Arbor as their New Member project. Within no time, 50 members comprised the Junior Service League of Ann Arbor. Affiliating with the Association of Junior Leagues International (AJLI) was a top priority, and in 1987 that lofty goal was achieved.
Since then, more than 4,000 women have been trained as members of the Junior League of Ann Arbor, and have taken the skills they have gained into the community to do more and share their knowledge. More than 375,000 volunteer hours have been given working directly with other nonprofits and people in need in the community. Hundreds of thousands of dollars have also been raised and funneled back into the community through our projects and Flexifund grants.
The Junior Service League of Ann Arbor spearheaded the opening of The Ronald McDonald Houses of Ann Arbor in 1985 in conjunction with C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital and the community. Thirty years later, the JLAA remains in partnership with RMH but has also volunteered for dozens of additional community agencies as well. See some of our past projects here.
In 2011, the JLAA adopted a Healthy Living Initiative and began devoting its resources to agencies and programs with a goal of decreasing hunger and increasing the quality of life and the lifespan of the most vulnerable women and children in Washtenaw County.
The JLAA is proud to have partnered with Food Gatherers since 2012 for Produce Distributions, which provide fresh fruits, vegetables and nutrition education to families on a monthly basis at Estabrook Elementary in Ypsilanti.
The JLAA also offers multiple Strong Moms Strong Girls workshops, which provide a consistent and coordinated message to students, school personnel, and parents to work together toward decreasing Relational Aggression.
Most recently, JLAA has partnered with the Ann Arbor Hands-On Museum to offer Kids in the Kitchen workshops. The goal of the initiative, which is supported by The Association of Junior Leagues International, Inc. and its member Leagues, is to empower children and youth to make healthy food and lifestyle choices, therefore preventing obesity and its associated health risks.
Other recent community partners include Girls on the Run, Girls Group, SOS Community Services and the Warm the Children campaign.