Submitted by Traci C. Benjamin
Service is What we Do
New Jersey Garden City Alumnae Chapter (NJGCAC) kicked off the 2021-2022 sorority year doing what we do best – service. The chapter’s Delta Academy and GEMS teamed up with the chapter’s Political Awareness committee and collaborated with sorors of Rancocas Valley Alumnae Chapter to host a stellar Presidential Youth Conference. While the event was virtual, young people from across Burlington and Camden counties and all points in between turned out to discuss the “Power in Our Voice.” Conversations ranged from mental health, political awareness, community service, and goal setting. We know our future is secure with these young, dynamic leaders.
Grand Chapter put out the call for the Grow with Google initiative and NJGCAC answered. In collaboration with TogetHER: Mentoring and Empowering Womxn of Color, our chapter hosted five sessions. The workshops provided attendees with technology and the knowhow to succeed and not just bring a seat to the table but create their own table. The participants who joined us ranged in age from collegiates to seasoned. Each one leaving with nuggets of information to take them to the next level of their careers or personal endeavors.
Black History Month saw the return of a community favorite – the International Headwrap program sponsored by the International Awareness Committee. For the second year in a row, nearly 100 women joined to get history about this tradition. Following some history on the headwrap and its cultural connection, attendees were able to learn different ways of wrapping their hair. After learning its tradition, the women learned it’s more than just a head cover on a rainy day, it is about holding up your crown in all its glory.
Not only did the chapter honor its heritage in February, but they also focused on heart health. NJGCAC is proud to be a recipient of DREF “All of Us Research Program” $500 to support heart health initiatives. For one week, participants in our challenge were asked to make small changes to improve their heart health. Whether it was walking or eating a nutritious meal, each healthy change was documented on the participants’ social media account. At the end of the week, three women walked away heart healthier and with a monetary donation to keep the momentum going. While everyone did not win a prize, they walked away with healthier hearts and techniques to prolong their lives.