August 31, 2007

New Junior League awards benefit Children’s Hospital

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New Junior League awards benefit Children’s Hospital

Junior League of Nashville's Home Board recently presented the inaugural Founder's Gift of $450,000 to two programs at the Monroe Carell Jr. Children's Hospital at Vanderbilt to coincide with the Nashville chapter's 85th anniversary.

“We had 18 applications for the Founder's Gift. After months of review, interviews and presentations, we decided to split the gift among two programs at Vanderbilt,” said Meaghen Greene, chair of the Home Board. “Each provides a great volunteer opportunity for Junior League members, as well as allows us to provide creative solutions for children in our community who face crippling conditions.”

The gift was divided between the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit's Developmental Follow-up Clinic and the Center for Child Development (CCD).

“It is such a privilege for the Junior League of Nashville to continue to partner with one of the finest children's hospitals in the nation – the Monroe Carell Jr. Children's Hospital at Vanderbilt,” said Mary Rigby, president of the Junior League of Nashville.

“Our League began with a small group of committed women in 1922 and has grown to now be the 12th largest in the world, with a membership of 2,000 women. But, we have not forgotten our roots, and these Founder's Gifts help us carry out their legacy in such a powerful way.”

The Founders' Gift is open to any program, service, department or division operating as part of Children's Hospital. Every five years, a Founders' Gift will be presented to the selected area(s), beginning with this year's gift.

“Thanks to the Junior League of Nashville's Home Board, the Vanderbilt Center for Child Development will establish the Junior League-Vanderbilt Center for Parenting Young Children,” said Robin McWilliam, Ph.D., director of the CCD.

The CCD is responsible for prevention, identification of, and intervention with children with disabilities and their families. They will use this grant to begin the Junior League-Vanderbilt Center for Parenting Young Children. Its purpose is to provide parenting and support to families of all children and to promote the participation of all young children in their home, school, and community routines.

“This center will allow us to bring Vanderbilt parenting resources under one umbrella to make access to these resources easy for families,” McWilliams said.

“This is the only 'parenting center' in the U.S. that attends equally to the needs of families of typically developing children and children with special needs.”

The NICU Follow-up Clinic will provide developmental assessment services through age 3 for high-risk graduates of the NICU.

“We will use this grant to extend the excellent, state-of-the-art, NICU Developmental Follow-up services available at Children's Hospital to meet the needs of high risk infants throughout Middle Tennessee,” said Donna Daily, M.D., associate professor of Pediatrics.

“We will expand our educational efforts to improve developmental assessment services to enhance infant outcomes throughout the region.”

The Junior League of Nashville's first program was a Home for Crippled Children, which was moved to Vanderbilt University Medical Center in 1971. Programs of the Home are now housed both within Children's Hospital and elsewhere in the community.