Local chapter history
The Greater Grand Rapids Interest Group, which would become to known as the West Michigan African American Mother’s Society (WMAAMS), was founded and organized in January 2008 by Delvenia Beason and Barbara Welch. The two firmly believed that a local organization should be in place for all African American children to provide enriching experiences through active participation in civic, social, educational, cultural and personal development to support the successful attainment of their goals, ambitions and aspirations.
At 41 members, the group received Provisional Group status in December 2007 and in January 2008 held its inaugural children's programming event in celebration of “Founder’s Day” which incidentally had an even greater relevance due to the successful election of the country’s first African American President and the subsequent Inaugural celebrations, which surrounded the occasion.
During the two and a half years as a Provisional Group, WMAAMS, sponsored by the Greater Lansing Chapter, went through the joys and pains of launching a new organization as well as learning the ways and culture of Jack and Jill. We persevered under the theme of “Yes We Can!” and on July 30th 2010; the Greater Grand Rapids Interest Group was officially voted in as the Greater Grand Rapids Provisional Chapter at the 39th National Convention in Chicago, IL. On November 14th 2010, 16 members were installed as the Greater Grand Rapids Chapter of Jack and Jill of America. Past President Alice Peoples, Regional Director Kimberly Wills and Regional Programming Director Melanie Lynn attended the installation.
The 2011/2012 programming year marked our first recruiting year for the Greater Grand Rapids Chapter including the establishment of our first Informational Tea, our first voting and our first Initiation Ceremony for 2 new members.
Greater Grand Rapids Chapter of JJOA
P.O. Box 3744
Grand Rapids, MI 49501
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