First Posted: 1/15/2009
LUMBERTON - Jennifer Stephenson and her friends like to have a good time.
That was evident by the festive mood at her home Monday night as about 100 people packed her back yard to laugh, listen to music and consume a variety of food and drink at the potluck picnic.
The party-goers - members of the Lumberton Junior Service League - like to do good too.
The real purpose of Monday's celebration was to help three local charities, said Stephenson, who serves as president of the civic organization.
Established in 1964, the Lumberton Junior League has about 50 active members who are each asked to volunteer at least 25 hours to worthy causes each year.
The women's group gave a total of $5,000 to Exploration Station, the Robeson County Humane Society and the Boys and Girls Club of Lumberton/Robeson County. The gifts were part of the $9,000 the Junior League raised in April during its seventh annual KidsFest children’s carnival. The event featured games, pony rides and other kid-friendly activities. The Southeastern Family Violence Center was the beneficiary of last year's fund-raiser.
“This is what makes our fund-raising worthwhile,” said Stephenson as she handed out the checks. “We are a group that is involved and want to give of our time to the community.”
Ron Ross, executive director of the Boys and Girls Club, said the group does more than give away money. He said its members help out at the club's Christmas and Halloween parties and the annual Steak and Hamburger Dinner.
“And they didn't just start doing it, they been helping like that for more than nine years,” Ross said. “The best part is I didn't go to them … they asked us. They are a real asset to our community.”
The club received $1,000. Exploration Station and the Humane Society each got checks for $2,000.
Stacie Kinlaw, executive director with Exploration Station, said the money will be used to refurbish its 7-year-old farmhouse kitchen exhibit.
“I think what this group is doing is just great,” Kinlaw said. “Their assistance is greatly appreciated.”
A representative from the Human Society was not able to attend Monday's event.