The Jefferson Chamber Foundation, a 501(c)(3) non-profit has had a very exciting year in four areas:
- Beautification Efforts
- Community Development Projects
- Leadership Development
The hallmark of our programs was the development of a $272,000 Landscape and Water Fountain Project around and in the canal at the busiest intersection in Louisiana. The idea originated from one of our members and was financed in-part by donations to our foundation and from a collaborative endeavor agreement with our parish government. This project was the first project of its kind that will enhance the aesthetics of the intersection and the value of the corporate properties in the area.
Community Development Projects
Fat-City is an area located in the heart of Metairie, adjacent to the largest shopping center in the region. Planned as a night-club district, the area fell to abandoned buildings, sketchy nightclubs, and drugs and violence. With the help of business and government leaders, the area is undergoing an overhaul and total makeover, albeit a 10-15 year plan.
The Jefferson Chamber Foundation is facilitating the funding of the following:
- Fat City Project Manager: a part-time leader to bring consistent movement and change to the area. Two year funded position from public and private sources. ($50,000 per year)
- Fat City Murals and Maintenance: 18 painted murals overseen by the New Orleans Arts Society. (Total cost: $150,000)
- Fat City Trees and Maintenance: 97 planted trees (Total cost: $80,000)
- Fat City Holiday Lighting: (Total cost: $20,000)
Fat City Murals
The Jefferson Chamber Foundation, with a grant from Entergy, working with the Metairie Business Development District and Fat City Friends placed 7 murals, measuring 56 linear feet, which 16 Grace King students painted during the Spring 2017 semester as part of the Talented Visual Arts Program. These murals were installed on September 26, 2017, along the northeast corner of the Entergy substation located at Edenborn and West Esplanade as Jefferson Parish completed the Edenborn drainage project.
Our Leadership Jefferson Program is now in its 13th year. This year, 28 graduates benefited from the program, led by a professional facilitator, licensed in “Emergenetics,” which is a measurable test of behavior and genetics. The nine-month program also looks at the landscape of governance, diversity, education and overall lifestyle of our parish. Ultimately, leadership skills and an affinity for community involvement are developed.
Since the inception of the Jefferson Chamber Foundation Academy (JCFA) in 2009, the school has been successful in helping at-risk students ages 18-22 graduate from high school. Not a GED program, over 600 students have received traditional high school diplomas. With two campuses in our parish and a Board of Governance for the school in place, it was time to set the school on its on path. The JCFA is now autonomous in its decision making and governing power. We look forward to continuing to support the academy through both volunteering and college scholarships.