Junior Guild seeks new recruits

By Brie Handgraaf

Staff Writer

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While fundraisers such as the spring bargain sale and the fall mum sale garner publicity for the Junior Guild of Rocky Mount, the young women who make up the club’s membership do much more to serve the community throughout the year.

Club leaders are hoping to recruit new members to do even more in the community.

“Through the years, we’ve been a significant donor to North Carolina Wesleyan College and Stonewall Manor. We helped to start the puppet theater at the Children’s Museum. We have four organizations a year that receive a significant amount of money from us,” said Amanda Bell, co-chairwoman of the Junior Guild provisional class. “We get to have a whole lot of fun raising money then we give it away which is fun also, so it really is a win-win for everyone.”

The organization had its first of two Meet and Greet sessions Tuesday and is inviting any women interested in learning more about the Junior Guild of Rocky Mount to attend a second session at 6 p.m. Sunday at the Hampton Inn, 530 N. Winstead Ave.

In addition to being civic-minded, the club also has a networking focus.

“My favorite part of the guild is getting to meet people who are as excited (about) and love Rocky Mount as much as I do,” said Kelly Anne Mudd, who serves along with Bell as the Junior Guild’s co-chairwoman of the provisional class.

During the first year of membership, women in the provisional class are asked to serve 40 hours of community service and then 36 hours in the subsequent years until they become sustaining members after seven years.

“Part of your provisional year is learning the history of the guild, what the officers and committees do, but it is also an opportunity to come up with a project specifically for your group,” Mudd said. “We don’t want to say, here, do this and have fun while doing it. You find a project that fits your group and you make the most of it from putting up siding on a Habitat for Humanity house and making baskets for new residents to planning a family day for the Bassett Center residents.”

With members from all sorts of fields including health care and education – Mudd is an assistant principal at Nash Middle School – Bell said there are plenty of service options to work around the busy schedules of full-time careers or stay-at-home moms.

“There are lots of great women’s organizations in town, however, this offers an opportunity to meet women who you probably wouldn’t meet otherwise from all walks of life,” Bell said. “The Junior Guild really is about making lasting friendships while giving back to the community.”

Those interested in attending the Meet and Greet session Sunday are asked to email Bell at abell@rmfmc.com in advance. If unable to attend the meeting, Bell said, she or other members can answer any questions or meet one-on-one with anyone interested in becoming a member.

“Sunday night is an opportunity to come and find out more about the Junior Guild, ask any questions and see if they have any interest in finding their niche with us,” Bell said with a laugh. “Besides, there is free food, which is always a reason to attend.”