History of the Leadership Jefferson City Class Projects
It all began with the Leadership Jefferson City Class of 2000 suggesting there should be a volunteer based class project they could do while participating in the Leadership Jefferson City program. They felt it was very important to give back to the community and demonstrate what they have learned. As a group, they decide on a project and or fundraiser event, and together select a recipient(s) of the proceeds.
2000 - Started a Foundation
They made a donation to the Dare Project, assisted with improvements to the Kirchner State School Playground, In 2005, made a donation to Samaritan Center.
2001 - The Leadership Jefferson City, Class of 2001 hosted a dinner, dance, and silent auction at the Eagles to help the local March of Dimes office initiate the "Storks Nest Program". The Storks Nest Program had been formed at other March of Dimes offices around the country but the funding for the local office was not available. By initiating the Storks Nest Program, local, underprivileged mothers receive much needed tangible items (blankets, car seats, formula, etc.) for their new born babies. The Eagles donated the use of their hall as well as some of their key workers. Also, all auctioned items were donated. The class helped prepare the food, serve the meals, sell tickets, collect money, run the auction, etc.
2002 – Constructed play structure at Ellis Porter – Riverside Park
2003- Projects included; buying a theatre seat at the new Performing Arts Center, bowling for Big Brothers/Big Sisters, volleyball tournament for Relay for Life, Male beauty pageant for CF, sponsored a Special Learning Center Golf tournament hole, Progressive Dinners – donations to Samaritan Center – two years in a row and Big Project – Habitat for Humanity House.
2004 – Lewis & Clark planting at North Jefferson City
2005 – Re-landscaped entrance area at McKay Park
2006 - Trivia Night Fundraiser raised funds to benefit the Jefferson City Public Schools Parents as Teachers program and the Boys and Girls Club of the Capital City – raised $7,445
2007 – Fundraisers for Hope House and Boys and Girls Club of the Capital City
2008 - The Great 08s took on a myriad of projects including Men of the Club to benefit the Boys and Girls Club, Habitat for Humanity, MRRL 5K, Buck a Bone and Easter Seals. Participation in and support of these very worthwhile organizations/activities fostered camaraderie amongst the Great 08s as well as reinforced the importance and relevance of community involvement. Men of the Club fundraiser - $6,500. They also volunteered time for the following projects: Tour of Missouri, the Buck a Bone Contest to benefit the Special Learning Center, Habitat for Humanity and the Missouri River Regional Library.
2009 - The Leadership Jefferson City Class of 2009 sponsored a fundraising Leadership Walkway featured along the Greenway on West Edgewood.
2010 - For our class project we did multiple things. We all donated about $60 and gave $1250 to Big Brothers Big Sisters for Bowl-for-Kids-Sake; we are helping with the McKay playground project, bought a brick thing for our class for $50 for Samaritan Center and will give the rest of the money to the Buddy Pack Program (it should be about 300 or so?).
2011 - Leadership Jefferson City 2011 presented five iPads and a check for $1,500 to the Special Learning Center on Thursday, May 12. The Jefferson City Chamber Leadership Class of 2011 rose over $3,500 through a service project fundraiser to purchase iPads for the children of the center. The decision to raise money was determined after Debbie Hamler, director of the Special Learning Center, presented facts to the Leadership Class regarding the benefit of iPads, during a recent visit facility tour.
2012 – The class organized a Mini Golf Tournament at Turkey Creek which allowed them to donate $1,680, to the American Heart Association and $1,680 to the Kirchner School.
2013 - Organized the first annual People’s Choice MO Wine Competition, which was a huge success. This was the highest fundraising project of any class. The class of 2013 raised $8,270; they gave $4,135 each to the Samaritan Center and the Boys & Girls Club of Jefferson City.
2014 – The 2014 Class organized a Trivia Night and Silent Auction which brought in $11,201.54. The class also accepted outside donations which totaled $1,000. This brought the grand total of the project to $12,201.54! The funds from the class project made it possible to build bookshelves and supply books to create a library for Southwest Early Childhood Center.
2015 - The LJC Class of 2015 hosted a new event this year for their class project. It was a people’s choice micro-brewery beer fest: "Battle of the Brews". The event raised $13,710. Three organizations received $4,570 each: Special Olympics Missouri, Cole County's Buddy Pack Program (through The Food Bank of Central Missouri) and the Samaritan Center. In addition to their class project, this class logged more than 86 volunteer hours and members continue to volunteer as a class.
2016 - Continuing the momentum of the previous class’s event, LJC 2016 hosted the second annual Battle of the Brews in June, which included over ten brewers and over 70 brew samples. Local celebrities voted for Judges’ Choice. Attendees purchased tickets to vote for People’s Choice. Those tickets were then entered in a drawing to win an assortment of microbrews. The event raised $17,708.10. Three organizations were chosen as recipients: Special Olympics used the donation for the SOMO State Outdoor Games, making LJC 2016 a gold sponsor; Samaritan Center; and Jefferson City Parks and Recreation added an arch swing to the McClung Park playground renovation. Volunteer projects included Buddy Pack program, Serve Jeff City, and Habitat for Humanity Can Cottage construction.
2017 - The Leadership JC Class of 2017 shared proceeds from their class fund-raising event, Battle of the Brews, with three organizations: The Special Learning Center, The Samaritan Center and SafetyNet of Missouri. The donations totaled $29,400.13. Representatives from each organization met with class members recently to accept their donation and express their gratitude. Officer Mark Edwards accepted the check on behalf of SafetyNet and remarked “This donation is the largest one they have ever received”. Marilyn DeFoe, Executive Director of the Samaritan Center, shared the gift will help greatly with the needy families they serve. Debbie Hamler, Executive Director of the Special Learning Center, thanked the class for adopting the special project of providing a sun shade on their playground. She explained this will now allow health-fragile students to enjoy the outdoors.