When a friend’s dad suddenly passed away in a car accident, Julia Randall wanted to show up and support her. At the time, she remembered feeling unsure of how to help and what to say to her grieving friend. It was this sentiment that inspired the high school junior to start The Joy Mission Club at Lassiter High School last fall.
Julia is a neighbor of Natalie Sorrells, founder of The Joy Mission, and had learned about the organization when she was babysitting Natalie’s daughters one day.
“The goal was to organize a group of students to help other students. Our main goal is to make sure any students at Lassiter and its feeder elementary and middle schools know that they have some older kids looking out for them and if they ever need anything—we’re here to help,” Julia said.
After drafting the club’s charter last summer, The Joy Mission Club had its first meeting in September 2022. Today, nearly 40 members meet once a month to plan events and programs that create joy for kids while raising awareness for the greater community. One of their first programs involved creating Joy Baskets—filled with art supplies, books, journals, and grief resources—to bring to the counseling centers at their feeder schools.
Over the course of the fall and winter, they planned a campaign around Children’s Grief Awareness Day on November 17th and helped collect and deliver presents for The Joy Mission’s annual Christmas JOY program.
The club recently caught the attention of Fox 5 Atlanta News, as they were featured on the local news network!
The club has big plans for 2023, which include working more closely with the counseling centers at the feeder schools, planning for summer camp scholarships, and recruiting new members during freshman orientation.
It’s been incredibly rewarding to see The Joy Mission Club take off at Lassiter High School, and we’re so excited to continue working with them this year!
If your high school is interested in starting a Joy Mission Club, you can reach out at firstname.lastname@example.org.