The Philanthropy Committee was begun in 1993. Our first project, in 1995, was a gift to the Cancer Center at the UVa Medical Center in memory of one of our Board Members who had been a breast cancer patient at the Center. In her name we were able to contribute money for three projects: The printing of material for educating patients in preparation for breast surgery, books for the Cancer Center Lending Library, and what came to be called "Ramona's Room" on the infusion floor of the Center. Ramona's Room was a special room where patients who suffered hair loss during treatment could obtain head coverings at no cost to them. It was our principal Philanthropy Project until 2011 when Ramona's Room became a part of the Positive Image Boutique at the Emily Couric Cancer Center.
In October 1998 we established our tradition of supplying candy to the UVa student Lawn Residents who give out candy to hundreds of University and community children participating in "Trick-or-Treat on the Lawn". It is a wonderful UVa Halloween Tradition and we enjoy being a part of it.
In the Spring of 2013 we gave a large supply of books, crayons, and coloring books to the UVa Children's Hospital that we collected at our Spring Luncheon.
Our Current Project: UVa Women's Center
In 2012, The Women's Club Board presented a new philanthropy project to the membership, and a vote decided that we would partner with the Women's Center on Grounds at UVa. The Women's Center provides a variety of programs necessary for the wellbeing of our UVa students, both women and men. The originial pledge was a $500 grant to furnish a special quiet room, now called "Room to Breathe," for Women's Center clients who need a safe and nurturing place to rest, reflect, mediate, or just be alone. Here is an image of decorated Room to Breath. There is a posted notice that the UVa Women's Club helped provide its funding.
A subsequent gift to the Women's Club was given in honor of long-time member Verna O'Connell for her invaluable contributions to making Ramona's Room a reality and for her enthusiasm for philanthropy and the Women's Club's current project with the UVa Women's Center.
At her last meeting before moving to California, the Board celebrated Verna and her gifts of time and energy to the club in a variety of capacities over the years. Verna had a gift for the Board as well. She, along with member Nancy Campbell, collected all the historical documents related to Ramona's Room in a beautiful scrapbook,which she presented to the Board and the UVa Women's Club. Here is a photo of Verna with (from left to right) LaTisha Barnes, director of Flourish Positive Image Boutique at the UVa Cancer Center; the President of the UVa Medical Center Auxiliary; Diane Cole, health educator in the Cancer Center; and Martha Weiss, 2013-2014 President of the UVa Women's Club.
The Philanthropy Committee:
Becky Williams Co-chair
Liz Marshall Co-chair
If you would like to donate to the UVa Women's Center Project, you can access an printable form here.
Last updated: September 26, 2015
Photograph by James Marshall. All rights reserved. Used with permission