By Brooke Wall
I joined the Junior League because I wanted to be a part of a community of women who were focused on giving back to our amazing city. During the General Membership Meeting I attended as a prospective member, there was a panel of the past presidents of JLSF who shared some of their successes and what they got out of being a part of the League. They were awe-inspiring! From AIDS awareness to family planning, these past presidents had been at the forefront of leading the Junior League of San Francisco through several societal revolutions. I knew this would be the organization for me to join because it would allow me to give back to our society and be a leader for good in our community by volunteering my time, and advocating for members of our society who need the most help from our local officials. I have not been disappointed!
I have been member of the Advocacy committee for the 3 years I have been an active member, and I hope to be able to continue on the committee for many years to follow! The Advocacy committee works to raise awareness of the League’s strategic goals with elected officials, policy makers, and the community-at-large. I am proud to help generate awareness for human trafficking, transgender issues, maternal mental health, and now the social and emotional health of youth and elderly. The Advocacy committee coordinates Volunteer Training Days by screening important films and organizing expert panels to share their insights on key issues and further educate our members. For example, we have had SF City Assessor, Carmen Chu, SF District Attorney, George Gascon, and Supervisor Katy Tang, speak and share their work as it aligns with JLSF’s key issues.
Another exciting event that the Advocacy committee coordinates is JLSF’s Day at the Capitol. The Advocacy committee, along with Leagues from around California, travel to the State Capitol to meet with legislators from around the state (including our own David Chiu!) and advocate for supporting various bills that have been vetted through our internal Junior League of San Francisco process. In the past, JLSF has advocated for bills that support rape kit testing and lease protections for domestic violence victims. As the League shifts its focus to an impact-based community impact model, the bills we advocate for will align to our new focus area: the social and emotional health of youth and elderly.
Outside of my work on the Advocacy committee, I also very much enjoy getting to volunteer at Done in a Day’s with important organizations within our community, such as La Cucina, GLIDE, and Raphael House that helps me feel more connected to parts of our city that I would not interface with in my day-to-day life as a stay-at-home mom. By volunteering with these organizations, I am making an impact and supporting members of our city who need it the most.
The last reason I am so proud to be a member of the Junior League in San Francisco, but certainly not least, is the incredible women I have gotten to know through all the volunteer work we are able to accomplish. They are nothing short of inspiring, and I find it very motivating to be around such a bright and dedicated group of women. Members of the League come from all walks of life and professional backgrounds. We are lawyers, doctors, marketers, politicians, and much more. Some of us are mothers; some of us are working moms, some of us stay home. No matter the background, though, the League is very supportive of its members and is flexible to meet us where we are in our lives. Junior League of San Francisco allows its members to make their experience within the League whatever they need it to be at various times in their lives. This is something I have especially valued this year as I transitioned from a working professional to a stay at home mom. I think my son, George, has about 18 points this year… he comes with me to everything!
So if, like me, you are looking for a place to give back to San Francisco in a meaningful way and meet other women who are also motivated by our mission, I hope you will join the Junior League of San Francisco… you won’t be disappointed!