Our Focus Areas:
JCF has six focus areas for philanthropic investment for the greater good of Jefferson Parish:
Health and Wellness
Neighborhood Support and Revitalization
Race Equity Reconciliation
Boys and Girls Club of Southeast Louisiana, Building Excellent Schools, Cafe Hope, Celerity Woodmere Charter School, Center for Development & Learning, Community Visions Unlimited, Discovery Health Sciences Foundation, Friends of Jefferson the Beautiful, Hispanic Chamber of Commerce Louisiana Foundation, Jefferson Beautification, Jefferson Chamber Foundation, Jefferson Dollars for Scholars, Laureate Academy, New Orleans Education League of the Construction Industry, Servant’s Heart International Outreach, Teach for America, Thompson Thibodeaux Community Development Corporation, YMCA of Greater New Orleans.
COMMUNITY & CIVIC ORGANIZATION PARTNERS
Civix/GCR, East Jefferson Business Association, Greater New Orleans Foundation, InclusivCare, Jefferson Parish Government, Jefferson Parish Recreation Department, JEDCO, Jefferson Chamber of Commerce, LCMC, Louisiana Public Health Institute, Our Community Health, Westbank Business & Industry Association.
More than 50% of the children in Jefferson Parish cannot swim. So when the JCF initiated a free learn to swim program, the response was overwhelming!
JCF formed a partnership with the YMCA of Greater New Orleans, the Parish of Jefferson and the Jefferson Parish School Board. Over the past three years, the Y has provided 1,331 swim lessons at the Johnny Jacobs pool on the Westbank. Plans are already underway to expand the program in the summer of 2021 with a goal of serving 1,000 children!
Laureate Academy Charter School
JCF was an early supporter of Laureate Academy, a Westbank open enrollment elementary school that opened four years ago.
Classrooms at Laureate filled quickly, and today there are more than 364 students enrolled there with waiting lists for each grade level. Having outgrown its original location, Laureate administrators worked with JCF Board members to secure a new home and Laureate students entered spacious new quarters in St. John Bosco Parish. In the 2020-2021 school year, Laureate serves grades K-6. While nearly 90% of Laureate’s students are at-risk students, the school ranked as the highest performing open-enrollment elementary school on the Westbank, proving true the Laureate mantra—every child can learn!
Metairie Business Development District Fat City Initiative
JCF played a critical role in sustaining and advancing the effort to revitalize the Fat City neighborhood. In 2013 the Fat City Task Force created by the Jefferson Parish Council concluded its two years of work when it delivered a series of recommendations on that renewal effort to the Parish Council. That final recommendation involved the creation of a business development district known as the Metairie Business Development District ( MBDD). The JCF helped facilitate that recommendation by providing funds for a small staff to ‘bridge’ between the volunteer efforts until the official MBDD could take over. This volunteer organization known as Fat City Friends served a vital role in the transition in the two-year period between the conclusion of the task force and the creation of the Metairie Business Development District in 2015. Fat City Friends was able to mobilize a public mural campaign, a ‘greening’ campaign involving the planting of more than 200 trees in Fat City and holiday lighting displays. The funding from JCF was leveraged to match a grant from the Parish so that those improvements could be rolled out and the effort could continue without interruption.
Kenner Discovery Health Science Academy
JCF is proud of its support of the Kenner Discovery School (KDS), an open enrollment school which continues to grow and expand its campus and its enrollment. In 2012, JCF funded an initial ‘seed money’‘ grant to KDS.
Originally an idea held by a small group of Jefferson Parish residents to reform public education has since grown into a successful and high demand charter school network. Founded in 2013, Kenner Discovery Health Sciences Academy opened its doors to 420 students in grades Pre-K-3rd, 5th and 6th grade. Each year, Kenner Discovery added more grade levels and students. Now in its eighth year, the school serves over 2,000 students in grades K-12 and in 2020, KDS graduated its first senior class! In 2017, the Jefferson Parish School Board granted KDS an additional 10 years on its Charter designation.
Boys and Girls Club of Gretna
Boys and Girls Club of Gretna JCF grant funding has helped to improve academic success and enrollment. At the Westbank Boys and Girls Club, our members take part in enrichment activities with the stated goal of helping to mold young men and women especially those in need, to achieve academic success, good character, citizenship and lead healthy lifestyles. During the 2016 Club year, the Club served just under 325 youth during the after school and summer enrichment programs.
The Jefferson Community Foundation Grants have gone towards the operating budget of the Club and additional funding goes towards increased staffing thus allowing for increased enrollment.
Woodmere’s residents have more to enjoy and be thankful for since the Jefferson Community Foundation revived the Woodmere subdivision. Woodmere is located on the Westbank of Jefferson Parish and is the largest subdivision in the State; it is home to about 20,000 residents, most are first time home buyers. In response to complaints from residents about a need for stronger public safety measures and enhanced code enforcement, the JCF partnered with the district councilman, Mark Spears, and funded a neighborhood renewal effort which included sponsorship of community health fairs, installation of video surveillance cameras in targeted areas, and seasonal community celebrations. The JCF also assisted with after school activity programs for Woodmere students.