“The Association of Junior Leagues International Inc. (AJLI) is an organization of women committed to promoting voluntarism, developing the potential of women and improving communities through the effective action and leadership of trained volunteers. Its purpose is exclusively educational and charitable.” AJLI Mission Statement
Almost 120 years ago, a wealthy 19-year old New York socialite named Mary Harriman, daughter of railroad tycoon Edward R. Harriman, did something momentous: she decided to help those living in squalor in tenements on the Lower East Side of her city. In 1901 Miss Harriman formed the Junior League for the Promotion of the Settlement Movement and rallied women to help her help others less fortunate. That was the first step in creating the now global and far-reaching Association of Junior Leagues International Inc., which today serves to help millions of people in need. And 100 years ago, the second Junior League was formed in New Jersey, what is now known as The Junior League of The Oranges and Short Hills, or JLOSH.
My friend Myriam is a member of JLOSH which helps women and children in the area who are in need. One of many fundraisers for JLOSH was tonight’s exciting event, Girls Night In. Myriam, who hosted the event, had the idea to create a consignment boutique in her own house. Women consigned their gently-used gowns, clothes, shoes, handbags and accessories as Myriam opened her home to a shopping event for a cause. In the words of Kate Lee, the current President of JLOSH: “This is a great time of year to empty closets of the evening gowns we’ll never wear again, and make those beautiful clothes someone else’s treasure, but it’s even better knowing that the money raised will go directly to funding JLOSH’s mission and especially to helping children in need.”
I love this idea: that well-worn clothes can become others’ treasures, passing on the joy of dressing up. Recycling is about appreciating what we already have and Myriam and JLOSH found a way to share the outfits and the goodwill. Well done! I think Mary Harriman is smiling!
What do you think?