Director of Junior Clubs Message from Yvonne Ford
The start of a new GFWC/Ohio Federation of Women’s Clubs administration is always an
exciting time, new ideas, new projects to work on, but the same goal to improve our
communities and enhance the lives of others with volunteer service. Our Federation is rich in
history and accomplishments. I believe in the tradition, continuity, and mission of the GFWC
A quote which really resonates within me is “Life is not measured by the number of breath’s we
take but by the number of moments that take our breath away”. This is one of those moments, I
thank-you for the opportunity and privilege to serve as Ohio Director of Junior Clubs. As I
looked around the room at convention filled with a sea of faces, each face tells a story, so many
faces so many stories. You come from many different backgrounds and many different clubs
across the state of Ohio. You have many different life experiences and yet you all have at least
one thing in common, your willingness to give your time to help others. I am humbled by your
generosity of spirit and your compassion for your fellow human beings. Many of these words
were used by Wendy Moore on her blog to thank volunteers during national volunteer week.
These words describe all of you who so generously give your time thru out the year to Ohio
Federation of Women’s Clubs. Thanks to all of you our mission goes on. It is all of you working
so hard to make our communities a better place who takes my breath away. Thank you all for
Volunteering and being a part of GFWC/Ohio Federation of Women’s Clubs.
I want to say thank-you to the 2014-2016 Junior Board who said yes when they were asked to
volunteer. We have a wonderful group of women and I am looking forward to working with
them. The Junior Theme is “A Thyme to Plant-A Time to Grow”. The focus for this
Administration will be on conservation, gardening and improving our communities. The Junior
pin is round to symbolize the circle of life. The Thyme around the edges symbolizes activity,
courage, strength, happiness, feelings that club work brings to all club women. The butterflies
represent freedom, fun, and joyous times. They are a reminder to make changes when
opportunity arises. The watering can with the GFWC logo symbolizes water the source of life.
As all clubwomen is the source of life for GFWC Ohio. The tools surrounding the watering can
symbolize all clubwomen the tools needed to support GFWC Ohio.
The focus for this administration will be on conservation, gardening, and improving our
community. Gardening enhances our quality of life in numerous ways; providing fresh food,
exercise, health benefits, and life-long learning, it creates pleasing landscape, improves the
environment, and brings people together. Garden-based learning programs result in increased
nutrition and environmental awareness. It gives young people the chance to develop a wide range
of academic and social skills.
Garden experiences enhance an awareness of the link between plants in the landscape and our
clothing, food, shelter, and well-being. They also provide children and youth with the time and
space to explore the natural world something that can occur rarely in today’s era.
So, what can we do? You can take “Thyme to Plant-Time to Grow”. Initiate a successful
community gardening project with kids. Demonstrate how plants are grown from seed and let
them take the fresh vegetables home. Many Children have no idea how the produce end up in
their neighborhood grocery stores. Plant an indoor garden in a nursing home or for a shut in.
Start and sustain a school garden.
Discusses seed saving, how to “go native”, how to compost and use compost. Recent findings
include improved concentration for children with attention deficit disorders after taking a walk in
the park, and lower crime rates in inner-city neighborhoods with greenery. Start a community
garden and raise vegetables to be donated to a homeless shelter, veteran’s clinics, or food
pantries. Plant a Garden of Hope for cancer survivors – to quote Lady Bird Johnson “Where
flowers bloom, so does hope”. Volunteer at an event or donate to help plant trees in October for
Neighborwoods month. The ideas for gardens are endless and I’m sure that you will come up
with something that fits for your club. I realize that all of you do not want to get your hands
dirty so you can be in the planning or distribution of the bounty or beauty of your gardens.
When it comes time to do our annual club report, we will be looking for the club that has the
most creative community improvement, conservation or teaching experience. The Junior Special
Project The Circle of Life Award will be given to the club or clubs who have created a garden
and used the bounty from it to improve their community.
In closing I would like to thank you all for sharing your precious time with me. I look forward to
visiting your clubs across the state and spending more “Thyme” with you! I would like to
express my immense gratitude to GFWC/Ohio Federation of Women’s Clubs and all of you for
giving me this privilege to become GFWC Ohio Director of Juniors.
In Federation Friendship and Love,
GFWC/Ohio Federation of Women’s Clubs
The Circle of Life
Chairman: Stephanie Furano
Objective: Awards will be given to the club or clubs who have created a garden and used the bounty from their efforts, to improve the community.
The Circle of Life Award: This Junior Award (2014-2016 OFWC Junior Directors’ Emphasis) will be presented to OFWC Junior Club(s) that has done the most outstanding project based on the most creative Community Improvement, Conservation, or Teaching Experience.
The Junior Focus: Conservation, Gardening, and Improving our Communities.
Gardening enhances our quality of life in numerous ways: providing fresh food, exercise, health benefits, and life-long learning. It creates pleasing landscapes improves the environment, and brings people together. Garden-based learning programs result in increased nutrition and environmental awareness.
It gives young people the chance to develop a wide range of academic and social skills.
Garden experiences enhance an awareness of the link between plants in the landscape and our clothing, food, shelter and well-being. They also provide children and youth with the time and space to explore the natural world.
How Clubs can make A Thyme to Plant – A Time to Grow happen in their communities:
Initiate, Educate, Cultivate, and Appreciate
· Initiate a successful community gardening projects with kids
· Plant an indoor Garden in a Nursing home or for a shut in
· Start and Sustain a School Garden
· Start a Community garden and Raise vegetables to be donated
· Plant a cutting Garden
· Plant a Butterfly Garden
· Plant a Garden of Hope for Cancer Survivors
· Volunteer to host an event or donate to help plant a tree in your community for Neighborwoods Tree month in October
Photo Diary Display
Please share club photos of your Circle of Life gardening project on a scrapbook page 12 x12. The pages will be on display during the Junior Banquet at the 2015 and 2016 Conventions. This will not be judged; it will only be to share your gardening efforts with fellow club members.