The Junior League of Pensacola members are gearing up for our 3rd annual Little Black Dress Initiative (LBDI). LBDI is a week-long, social media driven fundraising campaign that uses the iconic “little black dress” to raise awareness about poverty and its effects. Our focus is on the Escambia County population in poverty and bringing awareness to how it effects children.
Why is the Little Black Dress Initiative important?
Food insecurity is a household-level economic and social condition of limited or uncertain access to adequate food. In 2018, an estimated 1 in 9 Americans were food insecure, equating to over 37 million Americans, including more than 11 million children.
Consider the following statistics regarding food insecurity in Escambia County:
Approximately 46% of Escambia County households are struggling and living paycheck to paycheck:
- ALICE* Households: 34% (state average: 32%)
- Households in Poverty: 12% (state average: 14%)
In 2019, 8,601 families were enrolled in WIC**, up 17.8% from 2018
9% of Escambia County students are eligible for free or reduced-price meals
*ALICE = the population in our communities that are Asset Limited, Income Constrained, Employed. The ALICE population represents those among us who are working, but due to child care costs, transportation challenges, high cost of living and so much more are living paycheck to paycheck.
**WIC = The Federal Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC) provides EBT cards for free food to use at local grocery stores as well as nutrition and breastfeeding counseling for Women, Infants and Children under 5 years old.
Our 2020 goal is to bring awareness to how many households in Escambia County are struggling and continue our monthly Kids in the Kitchen initiative that teaches and promotes healthy eating to kids. Our goal is to raise $10,000. We encourage advocates to set a personal goal of $86 which represents the approximately 8,600 local families currently enrolled in WIC. As a reach goal, consider $273.01 representing HALF of the 54,602 local households who live in poverty or in an ALICE household.
How can you support the Little Black Dress Initiative?
Participants wear one black dress or outfit for five consecutive days and are encouraged to harness the power of social media to drive online donations. The purpose of LBDI is not just to wear the same dress for five days. It provides a chance for us, as Junior League of Pensacola members, to discuss the needs of our community and what we can do to help.
You don’t have to be a member of JULEP to participate in LBDI! We welcome anyone who wants to join us.
Spread the word on social media leading up to and during the campaign by sharing your fundraising page and by using the hashtag #LBDIPensacola. Keep an eye on our Facebook page for posts you can share on your profile.
You can support the Little Black Dress Initiative by sporting our fundraising and awareness t-shirt. Profits go towards the Junior League of Pensacola’s community impact programs.
Will you join us as a community advocate? Join us in raising money for the Little Black Dress Initiative and Junior League of Pensacola.