News — August 08, 2002
The Coconut Grove Junior Chamber?A Phoenix!
We don?t force our people to do anything; we simply make our projects so interesting and fun that people want to come to them and get involved in planning them. ?Coconut Grove Junior Chamber President Patrick Knight In 1998-2000, the Coconut Grove Junior Chamber, in South Florida, U.S.A., was facing a downward spiral. The chapter was in disarray with more than $2,000 in debt and only about 30 active members?after having had more than 100 for several years. A new board was elected for 2001. Although six of the twelve board members had been affiliated for less than a year, they believed in the objectives laid out by chapter President Patrick Knight?to double the membership, triple the number of projects, and host a black-tie affair that would attract Miami-Dade County Mayor Alex Penelas. Like the mythical phoenix, the chapter came back to life!
Having a marketable product, they followed The Total Marketing Concept. ?I realized that the best way to recruit new members was simply to utilize every avenue to get the word out about who we are and what we do,? says chapter President Knight. ?We don?t force our people to do anything; we simply make our projects so interesting and fun that people want to come to them and get involved in planning them.? Significant and Fun Projects Thanks to new marketing, communications and networking concepts, membership doubled in six months and is now more than 200! The chapter?s programs focus on individual development, international involvement, charity fundraising, social events, business opportunities, and community service. Here are a few examples: Mayor's Ball On January 5, 2002, six members of the Coconut Grove Junior Chamber attended the annual Mayor's Ball hosted by Miami-Dade Mayor Alex Penelas and his wife Lilliam. The Coconut Grove Junior Chamber Foundation donated $15,000 to the event, which benefits United Way of Miami-Dade. Habitat for Humanity On January 12, Coconut Grove Junior Chamber members teamed with Habitat for Humanity to help build a house in Kendall. Members had a great time while working on roof trusses. Clothing Drive for International Rescue Committee On January 16 and February 6, the Coconut Grove Junior Chamber sponsored a clothing drive for International Rescue Committee (IRC), an organization that helps refugees assimilate in a new land and get on their feet financially. For more information regarding IRC, please click here. Coconut Grove Arts Festival Beer Booths On February 16-18, Coconut Grove Junior Chamber members had fun as volunteers in the Budweiser beer booths at this nationally renowned festival to raise money for community and charity events. Leadership Series For the first ten minutes of every board meeting, the Coconut Grove Junior Chamber offers a Leadership Series to help train current and future officers. All members are welcome. Topics covered include Creative Thinking, Synergy Between Portfolios, Roberts Rules, Motivating Members, Time Management, Delegation, Email Etiquette, Public Speaking and Networking for the Organization, Teamwork and Group Dynamics, Member Activation, JCI Protocol, and Setting Personal Goals. Speakers at General Membership Meetings Throughout the year, speakers are invited to the first general membership meeting of the month to discuss topics such as financial planning, self-defense, landlord-tenant laws, and other issues. Disaster Relief Team The Coconut Grove Junior Chamber is affiliated with the Disaster Relief Team (DRT), a project started by the United States Junior Chamber of Commerce. Whenever a natural disaster strikes a community, DRT is usually the first group to arrive with supplies and help for those in need whether in the United States or around the world. For more information regarding DRT, click here. Deserved Recognition While trying to get the organization back on its feet, the Coconut Grove Junior Chamber has achieved great success. Awards presented to the chapter include the Best Chapter in the State of Florida, Best Local President in Florida, project awards in every category for the State of Florida, the Most Outstanding Junior Chamber Chapter in the United States for 2001, and the Most Outstanding Chapter of the Year Award at the 2002 Area C Conference It has been the chapter?s team spirit, ambition, hard work and a willingness to think ?outside the box? that has taken the Coconut Grove Chapter to new heights. There is a new pool of young leaders who are eager to take this organization to the next level and build on the foundation that has been laid by dedicated Jaycees. To learn more about the Coconut Grove Junior Chamber and their interesting and numerous projects, please visit the chapter?s website. Moreover, make sure to attend Congress. You?ll find many Coconut Grove Junior Chamber members in Las Vegas in November!