2017 Colgate Bright Smiles, Bright Futures Community Impact Award Winner
The Junior League of Orange County, CA
Foster care has long been an important focus for the Junior League of Orange County, as it has been for many other Leagues.
But what JLOCC has achieved over the last decade demonstrates what can happen when a League thinks long term…and big.
It all started in 2006, when JLOCC eagerly supported an initiative by a community partner called the Orangewood Foundation to establish a residential high school for foster kids and other at-risk youth. Orangewood is one of the leading providers of services to foster youth and former foster youth.
Spring 2017, that school – called the Samueli Academy – graduated its first class.
Here are just a few of the things JLOCC did to make the Samueli Academy a reality and a success:
- It embraced the vision of giving foster youth and other at-risk youth a chance for educational and career success, and
- It raised $500,000 in seed money
- League members have been deeply involved in the school’s mentorship and career-development programs while providing ongoing financial and volunteer support for a wide array of extracurricular activities.