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Written 2016 for the 85th Anniversary

The ZONTA Club of Mount Vernon had its organizational meeting April 1930 and received its Charter on April 28, 1931. There were 17 members.

From the very beginning, the members of this Club have supported and advanced the ideals and goals of Zonta International. The Club met its share of ZONTA International's projects and also supported local programs and has also met the needs of the community.

The first fundraiser were bridge parties held in members' homes. In January 1934 a musical and silver tea were held, as well as a bridge party, at the Flower Shoppe on Gramatan Avenue. The Club hosted the 1935 District Conference at the Hotel Gramatan in Bronxville.

During the war years, ZONTA's programs placed emphasis on what part women might and should play in maintaining peace. Annual joint meetings were held with the Mount Vernon Business and Professional Women's Club.

After the war, the Club expanded its involvement in the community by providing visiting housekeepers to homes where small children with working parents would have been left alone; sent mother and children to summer camps; maintained a young woman in nurses training; contributed to student loan programs; gave scholarships; provided books and furnishings to the local Girl's Club and contributed to other local agencies.

At the Club's 25th Anniversary, Assembly woman Frances Marlatt, keynote speaker, was presented roses for her backing legislation to make the rose the New York State flower. She was a Charter member and active until her death in 1969.

In 1974, the New Rochelle and Mount Vernon Clubs co-hosted the District III Conference which was held at the Rye Hilton in Portchester. Entertainment was a fashion show sponsored by Bergdorf-Goodman.

In 1979, the Club's name was changed by Charter Amendment to the ZONTA Club of Mount Vernon Area.

The Club continues to support local projects. From 1989 and for II years, members visited and donated more than $2500 to the Seabury Wilson Retirement Home. Contributions were made to the following shelters: Samaritan House in White Plains, Naomi Place in Mount Vernon, My Sister's Place in Yonkers and the Northern
WESTCHESTER Shelter. Donations of Pajamas and books were given to the Pajama Program of WESTCHESTER. Members visited Andrus-on-Hudson residents. Since 1998, the Young Woman in Public Affairs Award had been presented annually, beginning at $250 then increased to $500 and for the past fourteen years $1,000. In 2010 and 2016 our Club's winner was also a District HI winner and a Zonta International winner.

We have given $1,000 to the ZONTA Club of Siena Leone for their Cathedral School Rehabilitation Project for the purchase of chairs for the students. Scholarships were given to local high schools, nursing schools and the Mount Vemon Music Academy students.

Donations were given to Lawrence Hospital for women's health programs, to Mount Vernon Hospital, the Teen Peer-to-Peer's Education Program of Mount Vernon Task Force on Aids, the Look Good-Feel Better Program for breast cancer patients at St. Jolm's Riverside Hospital in Yonkers, to Children Inc, and to a local survivor of the 9/11 disaster. Members have participated in Literacy Volunteers of America The members donated and planted trees at St. Paul's Church located at the National Shrine of the Bill of Rights in Mount Vernon in 1985, 2000 and 2003 to block the view of the industrial areas from the site.

In 2002, the Club's Charter was reissued as the ZONTA Club of WESTCHESTER. Members participated in the ZONTA International Convention held in New York City in July 2004-working prior and during the event.

Our first ZING (ZONTA International Network Gathering) was held in 2004 and continues to present ZONTA to new and potential members.

The Club, since 2005 to present annually supports Ejayes Charities ( a medical mission in Nigeria with funds and donation of supplies, clothing, etc. Funds were collected to support the ZONTA Club of New Orleans following Hurricane Katrina. We support IE Services (a program to improve women's heath). Several RAVE (Rape and Violence Eradication) walks have been held and raised a total of $10,360 for SANE (Sexual Assault Nurse Examine) training. Our newest project is the collecting of new or gently used bras for "Free tile Girls." Our donations help survivors of human trafficking. A Club Website was initiated in 2005.

The District 3 Conference was sponsored by the ZONTA Club of WESTCHESTER. The Club received the Governor's Award (Silver Bowl) in 2009 and again 'm 2010 designating the Club the best in District 3.

In 2012 the Club was one of the sponsors of the WESTCHESTER Women's Agenda Summit. In 2014 we sponsored the showing of the Film "Human Trafficking - Modem Day Slave Trade" and in 2015 the Club hosted "Breaking the Silence" understanding domestic violence. We also held a panel presentation of "The Persistence of Gender Equality."

For the past 17 years, our major fundraiser has been a Brunch and Fashion Show. It also honors our Zontion of the Year or the Woman of the Year. The money from this event funds the Club's local and International Projects.

We have come a long way, but there is much more to do. The Mission of ZONTA is EMPOWERING WOMEN THROUGH SERVICE & ADVOCACY. By improving the status of women, we elevate the standards of mankind. Therefore, as we look back on what has been accomplished, let us rededicate ourselves to the goals of ZONTA.