3/1/16: Junior Auxiliary Delivers Vital School Supplies to Easter Taney County Elementary Schools

Junior Auxiliary of Taney County (JATC) members delighted teachers and children alike as they delivered school supplies to Mark Twain, Taneyville and Bradleyville Elementary Schools a few weeks ago.  Knowing that many other organizations assist with items at the start of the school year, JATC’s annual delivery of school supplies is designed to help fill the shelves after the holiday break. 

The much-needed supplies included spiral notebooks, rulers, glue, glue sticks, pencils, erasers, pens, scissors, crayons, folders, notebook paper, construction paper, and note cards.  In addition, based on input from the teachers and counselors, JATC members brought socks, underwear, hats, gloves, Clorox wipes and Lysol to the schools.  They also gave Gift Cards to the teachers to purchase needed classroom supplies.  The teachers at Bradleyville were overjoyed with the donations and the Gift Cards, commenting that $50 was double the amount that the school budgets for them annually.

Junior Auxiliary members have been collecting high demand items since August.  They shop the sales and save them up for this time of year when the schools run low.  Members donate many of the items and the budget allotted for this project goes to fill special requests from these schools such as hand sanitizer and construction paper. 

Donations for this project and others that JATC provide to the community can be sent to JATC, PO Box 862, Hollister, MO 65673.  More information can be found on the Junior Auxiliary website JATCMO.ORG, their Facebook page, Junior Auxiliary of Taney County or via email at jatcmo@gmail.com.

School Supplies in January is one of many service projects that JATC members provide to the community.  Others include Tender Critters; Santa’s Gift House; College Readiness programs and scholarships; prom dresses for girls in need; support for the Women’s Crisis Center, in which they provide home improvement and monetary support for one of the cottages; Heart of Arts, in which members donate art & craft materials for adults with disabilities at Developmental Connections; and Book Swap Stop/Homework Helpers, in which they provide snacks, enrichment programs, reading and homework help for children who live in extended-stay motels.

Members raise money for these projects through one major event - a fun Trivia Challenge with dinner, live entertainment, a raffle and a Silent Auction.  This year the 16th Annual Trivia Challenge and Silent Auction will be held at the Radisson Hotel in Branson on April 2, 2016.  Also, JATC raises money from other events such as Belk’s Charity Days, Schwan’s Cares and the Branson Women’s Expo and receive donations from businesses including Doug Baker State Farm Insurance, Ozark Mountain Ear Nose & Throat, Combs Hotel Properties, Mr. G’s Pizza, Mitch Holmes/Edward D. Jones Financial Advisor, Central Bank of Branson and D.S. & F. Plumbing.

JATC is more than a nonprofit organization, it’s a group of women united by a single cause and dedicated to helping the children of Taney County.  That’s the magic of JATC.  It was chartered by a group of caring, enthusiastic women in 1998 and continues to grow and thrive throughout Taney County.  Approximately 50 members annually contribute more than 4,000 volunteer hours as they strive to improve the mental, physical, social and emotional well-being of children in Taney County.

JATC is part of the National Association of Junior Auxiliaries (NAJA), a non-profit organization founded in 1941 with headquarters in Greenville, Mississippi.  NAJA has more than 15,500 active, associate and life members in 98 chapters located in Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, and Tennessee.  Their slogan is “Care Today-Character Tomorrow”.

Published: Springfield News-Leader, March 12, 2016; Branson Tri-Lakes News, March 5, 2016