The Junior League of Kansas City, Missouri: women building better communities.
Standing: Lindsay Kiely, Sarah Knights, Brooke Boynton, Rachel Dart and Maria Shadid
Kneeling: Kelly Olson and Susan Mize
“Imagine leaving everything you know, your home, your belongings to go live in a place to be safe because your loved one is hurting you, threatening to hurt you or your children or even your pets…
That is the life every day for women, children and the pets that come to Rose Brooks Center. That is their reality. When they enter they have no idea what a domestic violence shelter is like. Many questions run through their minds: How will we eat? Where will we sleep? We left everything behind! What will we wear? We don’t even have shampoo, deodorant – the basic necessities of life. What will happen to us?
Through the Junior League’s support we are able to provide shelter, basic necessities and a welcoming experience as our families arrive at our emergency shelter. The Welcome Bags that the League puts together say that they don’t have to worry about those things, that someone who doesn’t even know them cares about them, their children and wellbeing. That is the impact that Junior League has here at Rose Brooks Center. You help us fulfill our mission of ending the cycle of domestic violence. You help us save lives!” – Joan Dougherty, Director of Volunteers and Community Support.
The League’s Signature Program Hope and Healing Kits provides welcome bags, which are also referred to as kits to the moms and kiddos who check into the Rose Brooks Center. The bag contents vary, and include basic necessities and comfort items like pajamas, clean socks and underwear, pillowcases with cartoon characters for the littles ones and personal items.
Hope and Healing Kits Signature Program Chair, Susan Mize, likes being part of this committee because she enjoys being able to make a difference in people’s lives when they need it the most. She said, “If we can help make their transition even a little bit easier, then we have done our job. It is very rewarding from that perspective.”
Susan also said, “The December General Membership Meeting where League members donated pajamas, underwear and basic necessities brought in a huge amount of donations. We moved the bag stuffing project to my house, where I have the items stored in my basement. It is overwhelmed with donations, which is amazing!”
According to Rose Brooks, domestic violence in our area is at its highest level in 20 years. With League support, the Hope and Healing Kits Committee bring comfort and support to women and children from all walks of life, at a time when they need it most.