Name: Jené Luciani
What is your job? National TV Style correspondent, personality, bestselling author, contributor.
What social causes are most important to you? Anything that promotes self-esteem in young women and girls, cancer organizations, and as a mom, anything at all involving children!!
What charities do you support – and how? I’m on the board of directors for Operation Prom (a great organization to help disadvantaged girls get a great dress for the prom!) and the annual fundraiser for Seton Pediatric Group’s John A. Coleman School forDisabled Children (which I also host).
I also host the fundraisers every year for Go Pink NY (a breast cancer charity started by two New York teens) and the St. John’s Riverside Cancer Hospital, and am volunteering to do crafts with the children at Rusk Hospital in NYC through the Intimate Apparel Square Club.
Aside from that, I donate to a dozen charities a year, either my services and/or a signed copy of my book for silent auctions, or monetary donations, for everything from the Humane Society to the Campaign for the Westchester Children’s Museum and the Veterans of America.
I hosted my book launch party to benefit a local breast cancer charity here in NYC and I’m on the committee for The American Cancer Society's Evening of Hope. Basically, I never say no!! I stay very active in charity work, despite my busy schedule, because I feel above all else it’s so important to give back.
Do you have a passion for one in particular, is there a personal tie? Through writing my bestselling book The Bra Book, and including a chapter for women who have gone through a mastectomy, I have had women come up to me and thank me for trying to help them through such a challenging time in their lives. I never got to meet my grandmother because of breast cancer and my mother-in-law has battled the disease so it’s touched my life in so many ways, and the lives of many of my loved ones.
Also, having been born with a breast deformity and so many self-esteem issues as a teen related to that, I will do anything to help young women and girls feel better about the skin they are in, or simply look and feel great, no matter their circumstances. That’s why I like contributing to causes like Operation Prom.
Finally, I am very active in children’s causes such as the John A. Coleman School simply because I believe it’s a great cause. I was involved before I ever even became a Mom, but now, it hits home even more.
I also believe in being active in anything that affects the community you live in. Think globally, act locally. Everyone can do their part, even the busiest people!!
Is there a particular way you would want to encourage readers to be involved? Without coming off as preachy, I just can’t stress enough how important it is to take time out of your busy schedule to give back. Even if you choose a charity or cause out of the phone book! When I first got involved with the John A. Coleman School for disabled children, I literally came across their fundraiser on a listings page in the magazine I was writing for, and realized the school was practically in my backyard. I called up the fundraising chair Kirstin McArthur, offered up my services, and she was grateful for the extra help. I’ve now been involved for the last 4 years. Also, every little bit counts. If you can only afford an hour a year, or $100 a year towards a cause, at least it’s something!
I also suggest thinking of your skill-set and how you could help in that way. I’m not exactly the handiest of people so I wouldn’t necessarily think to call up Habitat for Humanity and offer to pitch in and build a home. However, I would offer to do marketing for them through my networks, help them organize a fundraiser, or MC an event, because those are skills I can offer and ways I can be of use.
How would you define social responsibility?
Social responsibility is every man and woman’s responsibility to themselves, their families, and others around them – including strangers! We are all put on this Earth to do our part and to give back to our communities in some way, shape or form. Where would we be without the help and selfless acts of others?
I have a band around my ankle, an amazing floral design on my stomach, a pink rose and my daughter’s name in pink on inside of my wrist, and a butterfly on my back (symbolizing my graduation from college when it was time for me to ‘fly.’) My tummy and wrist were done by the most amazing artist in NYC by the name of Adal Hernandez at Majestic Tattoo.