Chapter History

History of the Jacksonville Chapter 

            JJ Jax Chapter 2015                                     

History of the Jacksonville Chapter

It all started with Alma Daniels, Betty Davis, Iva Grant, Helen Gregory, Doris Hallmon, Frankie Handy, Laurice Hunter, Bernice Jackson, Joyce Lawson, Lorita Martin, Delores Shaw, Bennetta Sherard, Joan Spaulding, Marian Walker, Norma White, and Lydia Wooden who were a dynamic group of women dedicated to improving the lives children in their community. By the winter of 1968, this group had earned permission from the National organization to start a local chapter of Jack and Jill of America in Jacksonville, Florida.

During its first year of existence, the Jacksonville Chapter of Jack and Jill of America became known throughout the southeast region as an outstanding chapter in spite of its youth. The Chapter made significant contributions to the local community through such projects as providing services to needy families; services to child care centers, and assisting residents of the Eartha White Home. The legacy of the Jacksonville Chapter’s early community involvement and commitment to youth, which began during an era when the Chapter supported children and families in a community challenged with issues such as school de-segregation and busing, has left a lasting mark of cultural and community pride.   The Jacksonville Chapter continues to work to promote the image and awareness of a united, caring, and community-involved Black family organization in the greater Jacksonville community.

Chapter Programming

Over the past 46 years, the mothers of the Jacksonville Chapter of Jack & Jill have worked to develop and execute programs which reflect the true purpose and objectives of the National Organization while meeting the challenges of change.  To that aim, the Jacksonville Chapter has focused its current program year to promoting the “Power to Make A Difference”.  A highlight of the Chapter’s programming includes the following.

The Jacksonville Chapter has explored opportunities to increase our relevance and build our brand in the community. The Chapter began a partnership with the Black Expo in October 2013, and through this effort has raised over $20,000 for Foundation and the Shannon Smith McCants Memorial Scholarship (named in memory of a Jacksonville Chapter mother).  Through the McCants Scholarship Fund, the Jacksonville Chapter awarded three $2,500 scholarships though UNCF to students majoring in Pharmacy at Florida A&M University.

In September 2014, the Jacksonville Chapter was awarded a grant from the Jack and Jill Foundation for its “A Pathway to Manhood” providing the opportunity to touch and impact the lives of thirty 9th – 12th grade community young men through teambuilding, leadership, finance and life skills workshops.

On March 7, 2015, the Jacksonville Chapter hosted its fourteenth biennial Les Beautillion Militaire at the Jacksonville Omni Hotel, where 22 beaux were presented to society after five months of activities including leadership workshops, community service, and mentoring.