By HM staff
HJWC was focused on being flexible and creative, as our club leaders shifted and changed along with fluid state guidelines and restrictions over the last year. Although at the beginning of the year we did not know what would be possible, the Club rose up and overcame all obstacles and made it one of the most successful club years in HJWC history. Club membership increased from a handful of prior years to 206 members. The Education Committee raised $8,000 and awarded two educational scholarships to philanthropic-minded high school seniors. Our Juniorettes program expanded to 42 members, with the girls volunteering and leading various drives to benefit local not-for-profits, including collecting over 4,000 pounds of food for HCS Family Services.
Our 2021 year’s annual benefit originally entitled “Platinum Unplugged” was set to take place in Chicago, but due to the pandemic, the concept changed. The fundraising event was renamed “Platinum Unplugged: The Remix” and took place at Burdi Clothing in Hinsdale. Over 200 people attended the event where 50 people at a time would attend 1-hour shifts, to remain in compliance with state health guidelines. Attendees walked the red carpet, sipped drinks, and enjoyed the 360-degree glam cam. Including benefit, the club raised over $305,000 in the 2020-2021 club year which was awarded to 27 grant recipients, including, Center for Independence, Hephzibah Children’s Association, New Moms, Reclaim 13, Hope’s Front Door, Loaves & Fishes, Share Our Spare, Northern Illinois Food Bank, Bear Necessities, WINGS Program, Green Halo Scholars, Amith Health, IMD Guest House Foundation, People’s Music School, Northeast DuPage Family & Youth Services, The Chicago Lighthouse, Simply from the Heart, All Our Children’s Advocacy Center, Sharing Connections, The Home 2 Home Project, Child’s Voice, Wellness House, Helping Hands, Lutheran Child & Family Services, Almost Home Kids, Above & Beyond Family Recovery Center, and Assistance League Chicagoland West.
Other notable events included the annual Gift of the Season event hosted by Outreach in a new, outdoor drive-thru format, a Haunted Halloween Drive-Thru and Santa Zoom Calls hosted by Family Affairs, a St. Patty’s Day event hosted by Social (the Holiday Party was cancelled due to the pandemic), and a Family Love Letters virtual event hosted by Fine Arts featuring Artist Maureen Claffey. The club also continued to serve its community by completing service hours with various charities through Philanthropy Service Projects. In 2022, we are continuing to offer both virtual and in-person service projects and are continuing to focus on fundraising to support area nonprofit grant requests. Hinsdale Junior Woman’s Club raises money during each Club year to support nonprofit grant requests for tangible goods that will help the nonprofit better serve the people they are helping and the organization. It was the first year to offer a virtual option for club meetings and events. Since gathering numbers were limited to 10-50 people at different points throughout the year, the virtual option quickly became very popular and successful among the membership. It was also the first year of “member meetups”, which were created to provide social opportunities to the members in smaller groups, since HJWC had to remain compliant with regulations, prioritized keeping its members healthy, and wanted to make our members feel safe. Philanthropy Grant Presentations were completely held online, as well. Our goal was to meet our membership where they felt comfortable being, and provide as many opportunities for connection to the club and community as possible. Our creativity in 2020-2021 generated amazing momentum and we are excited for what lays ahead for the 2021-2022 Club year.
To learn more about HJWC or how to support our grant fundraising for local nonprofits, please visit www.hjwc.us