The Junior League of Northwest Arkansas was founded in 1992 as the Junior Service League born from a shared vision of a small group of local women who wanted to better this community in which we live. It was soon decided that the history and mission of the Association of Junior Leagues International and the organization’s strong emphasis on volunteer training would provide our local organization with the strength, clarity and resources to even better serve the needs of Northwest Arkansas.
After seven years of working to improve our community, we accomplished affiliation with The Association of Junior League International and became the Junior League of Northwest Arkansas on April 21, 1999.
In 1998, the Junior League of Northwest Arkansas conducted a needs assessment to identify the largest gaps in the available services offered in our community. Research showed domestic violence as a significant problem in our community, yet there were no volunteer organizations taking a stand against it, nor raising awareness about the impact it has our community. Our League had already been involved with helping women and children in need on a project by project basis, so it was a natural fit to take on domestic violence in Northwest Arkansas as our community focus area.
In an effort to support the fight against domestic violence, the League hosts several fund raisers to support our community partners. Our annual fund raisers include: Purple for a Purpose 5k, Winter Dreams Tour of Homes, Moonlight Masquerade, and Touch-A-Truck. Through the success of these events, we are able to support our partner agencies through donations for every day supplies and needs as well as major projects.
Recently we have supported the setup of the reading room at EOA Children’s House and made a gift of $40,000 to the Peace at Home Family Shelter for their Growing Shelter for a Safer Tomorrow campaign. This donation provided the funding the common area centered in the second floor of the expanded shelter.
In addition to supporting our community, the Junior League emphasizes the development of women through training and opportunities. In addition to leadership roles and committee involvement, our members are offered training events throughout the year to improve their skills in areas such as public speaking, healthy living, and financial planning.
Founded in 1901, The Association of Junior League’s International is comprised of over 150,000 women in 292 Leagues in the U.S., Canada, Mexico and the U.K. Famous members of Junior League include First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt, Ambassador Shirley Temple Black, First Lady Barbara Bush, Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor, Pulitzer Prize Winner Eudora Welty, First Lady Laura Bush and Academy Award Winner Katherine Hepburn.