The Junior Service League of Rome is a committed group of women who spend thousands of hours every year volunteering in Rome and Floyd County. The 2019-2020 Junior Service League calendar year ended abruptly due to COVID-19, however, League members have continued the tradition of helping this community throughout this pandemic.

Whether individually or as a group effort, JSL members have been active in supporting Rome and Floyd County this winter and spring. Dr. Sonbol Shahid-Salles of Redmond Regional Medical Center reached out to JSL in mid-March seeking hands to make face shields which are critical personal protective equipment for frontline workers. League members answered her call and together over 650 face shields were created to be distributed to local healthcare workers. Through individual donations from League members, delicious meals were also delivered to the Floyd Medical Center ICU nurses, technicians and staff as well as the Redmond Regional Medical Center ICU nurses and respiratory therapists. By “shopping local” for these meals, JSL also helped contribute to local businesses during these tough times. JSL has also donated snacks and drinks for frontline workers during this unprecedented time.

“When COVID-19 disrupted the League’s normal service opportunities and plans, our members responded by searching for ways they could serve the needs of those most affected by the pandemic,” said Catherine Farrar Jackson, outgoing president of JSL of Rome.

The Junior Service League of Rome rotates annually between a “service” focused year and a “giving” directed year with every year dedicated to giving back to the community. Prior to the impact of COVID-19, JSL members collectively volunteered in the community for over 1,000 hours and volunteered within the organization for over 1,700 hours. Even though 2019-2020 was a service focused year, JSL still gifted $16,000 to the League for Learning Program which provides school supplies to over 2,300 children in Rome City and Floyd County schools and also donated $5,500 to Chieftains Museum. Prior to the pandemic, a service project was held where JSL members packed 200 birthday bags, 200 party pack bags, and 300 pencil packs for Brighter Birthdays. Membership drives were also held at various events and supported the Boys & Girls Club of Northwest Georgia, the YMCA and the Ruth & Naomi House.

With the 2020-2021 League Year just around the corner, kicking off in July, the ladies of League will deliver school supplies through League for Learning, hold the anticipated Poinsettia Sale in the fall and Follies in February, incorporate several membership drives throughout the year and dedicate thousands more hours to working in the community.

Lastly, Junior Service League would like to take a moment to recognize our 2019-2020 President, Catherine Jackson, who has been a wonderful leader for this organization thanks to her unending commitment to JSL. We were so proud to call her our President. Catherine often led by example, and we could not have asked for a better person or example for this organization. No task was too big or too small. No question that we pestered her with ever fell on a deaf ear. The COVID-19 crisis cut our League year short but we felt comfort in knowing that Catherine led our organization with grace and integrity throughout this trying time. We wanted to make sure that we expressed our very heartfelt and sincere thanks for such a great year. Thank you so much Catherine.

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