Grants help Kiwanians comfort hospitalized kids

Grants help Kiwanians comfort hospitalized kids

Three Kiwanis clubs reached children in local hospitals, thanks to support from a Kiwanis Children’s Fund program. 

By Erin Chandler 

Through its Pediatric Medicine Support Grant Program, the Kiwanis Children’s Fund awarded grants for three worthy Kiwanis club projects in 2023. With that financial support, clubs are helping to renovate an entire hospital wing, bring much-needed equipment to a new play therapy room and jumpstart a new service for kids and families experiencing medical emergencies.  

Each of these projects had a common starting point: club partnerships with hospital staff and administration. After discussions regarding what kids need when dealing with overwhelming situations, each project was tailored to improve kids’ physical, mental and emotional health. 

Collaboration and renovation
Bustamante Children’s Hospital is the only children’s hospital in Jamaica, serving tens of thousands of kids. When the Kiwanis Club of Toronto Caribbean, Ontario, Canada, reached out to ask how it could help, members learned about plans for a much-needed renovation of the burn unit and plastic surgery ward. They also learned there was no budget to get it done. With a pediatric medicine support grant from the Kiwanis Children’s Fund — and in collaboration with the Kiwanis Club of Capital City Kingston, Jamaica — the Toronto Caribbean club is helping to bring the ward up to medical standards and creating a safer and more welcoming environment for young patients.  

The renovation will include an aesthetic redesign, with new paint, curtains, artwork and greenery; an unused dressing room retrofitted as a separate area for outpatient procedures, to help reduce the risk of infection; and an upgraded dressing room for inpatients, with new equipment and supplies. Other additions include a designated area called The Reading Nook, which will be established and maintained by the Capital City Kingston club — and where local Builders Club and Key Club members will join the Kiwanians in reading to patients.

New hospital, new ways to serve kids
Like Bustamante Children’s Hospital, Trinity Hospital in the U.S. is vital to a large region. The hospital serves patients, including thousands of children, from 25 counties in North Dakota and Montana. The new Trinity Hospital facility, which opened in the spring of 2023, replaces its 100-year-old predecessor and boasts significant upgrades — thanks in part to the Kiwanis Club of Minot, North Dakota, and a pediatric medicine support grant from the Kiwanis Children’s Fund.

For the new pediatric unit’s play therapy room, the Minot Kiwanians funded the purchase of all equipment and helped set it up prior to the grand opening. In the new room, supervised play therapy will help young patients and their families feel less anxious during the often-stressful experience of hospitalization — and help doctors better gauge and even speed along young patients’ progress.

Bringing bedside comfort
The Kiwanis Club of Long Beach, California, U.S., also aims to make hospital patients and their families more comfortable. Working with MemorialCare Miller Children’s & Women’s Hospital Long Beach administration and Child Life Program staff, the club developed its bedside comfort bags project. 

A pediatric medicine support grant from the Kiwanis Children’s Fund is helping the Long Beach Kiwanians purchase items for infants, kids and adolescents. Each month, the club will enlist the help of Key Club and Circle K International members to stuff the items — including books, toys, crayons, coloring books, journals and socks — into 125 drawstring bags, which are brightly colored and Kiwanis-branded. They’ll deliver the bags to the hospital, where the items will ease the anxiety of pediatric patients and their siblings — about 1,500 children per year. The club will also create and restock a pantry for parents and caregivers, so that Child Life specialists and nurses can provide toiletries, notepads, puzzle books and pencils, and even loan phone chargers as needed. 

How do I apply for a Pediatric Medicine Support Grant?
Made possible by the generosity of the Kiwanis governors’ classes of 2005-06 and 2006-07, the Pediatric Medicine Support Grant Program provides a onetime grant for clubs to fund projects that specifically support local children’s medical centers. Grant money can be used to purchase products or supplies for patients’ hospital stays or to support a capital improvement project. 

Learn more and apply for a pediatric medicine support grant at For more information about the Kiwanis Children’s Fund, visit

Grants help young leaders grow

Grants help young leaders grow

The Kiwanis Children’s Fund is helping clubs fulfill the Kiwanis cause of youth leadership development

By Erin Chandler 

Kiwanians know that today’s children are the future of every community around the world. That’s why Kiwanis clubs help kids to not only survive but thrive as they grow into adulthood. The following six projects received club grants from the Kiwanis Children’s Fund to help kids across four continents grow into leaders who give back to their communities. 

The skills to save lives
In 2022, the Kiwanis Club of Christchurch, New Zealand, partnered with FACT Co to provide a three-week first aid and CPR training course for 11- and 12-year-olds at Opawa School. Club members wanted to make sure that families’ financial needs did not present barriers to kids learning vital skills that could save lives — and they found the students’ enthusiasm in learning “amazing to see.” Some of the children even expressed a newfound interest in medical careers. A grant from the Kiwanis Children’s Fund will allow the club to bring its first-aid program to more schools this year, ensuring that more kids will develop lifelong skills that will benefit themselves and their communities. 

Confidence through new clothes
The Kiwanis Club of Matthews, North Carolina, U.S., has helped local families purchase clothes for their school-age children for over 20 years. School counselors and social workers help identify children who are most in need, including those experiencing homelessness. Then, over a two-week period, Kiwanis volunteers help these families shop for school clothes, underwear and shoes. The club emphasizes how new clothes can give children in difficult circumstances the confidence and self-esteem to perform better in school, setting them on the path to brighter futures. A Kiwanis Children’s Fund club grant will help the club fight inflation so that families can purchase all the items they need. 

After-school tutoring and anti-drug abuse program
For three years, the Kiwanis Club of Szu Hai Nu in Taichung City, Taiwan, has provided an after-school tutoring program for first- through sixth-grade children from low-income, new-immigrant, single-parent, skipped-generation and indigenous families. The program includes English reading, art and sports time — and two years ago, the club added a component to educate students on drug abuse prevention. Attendance for the program, which is prepared and run by Kiwanians and teachers, has doubled since it began, and it now serves hundreds of students. A grant from the Kiwanis Children’s Fund will help cover the price of additional equipment and materials, including bilingual resources. Club members hope to have a meaningful impact on their community by guiding children’s development in a fun and safe environment. 

Feeding bodies and minds
The Kiwanis Club of Fairfield-Villa Rica’s Kids In Need program takes a multipronged approach to helping kids in its Georgia, U.S., community develop into the next generation of leaders. Throughout the school year, the club hands out weekend food backpacks to 140 children, pays the lunch debts of students in the reduced meal program, provides snacks to students who miss breakfast and supplies clothing and hygiene products through school care closets. A Kiwanis Children’s Fund club grant will help expand this program to more kids as demand increases. During the break between academic years, the club sponsors children in kindergarten through sixth grade to attend Camp Invention, a weeklong STEM program conducted by the National Inventors Hall of Fame. Through this program, the club helps kids in difficult circumstances foster their interests and talents for the bright futures ahead of them. 

Developing scholarly and leadership skills
In Cartago Valle del Cauca, Colombia, the Kiwanis Club of Mariscal Robledo, Cartago, is helping kids stay in school and develop leadership skills. The club currently provides scholarships to 15 children who are at risk of dropping out of school due to their families’ financial circumstances. The club also helps pay for books, videos, computers, chairs, tables and more for a program that teaches values such as leadership and social responsibility. Next year, a Kiwanis Children’s Fund grant will help members serve even more children. Club members recognize how programs like this can improve students’ academic achievement and their sense of belonging to a community — qualities that will strengthen children’s home lives and help them build a more constructive society as they grow up. 

Sowing values
The Kiwanis Club of Quito, Ecuador, is working to instill the values of leadership and service in young people through its “Training in Values” program. The club will use funds from a Kiwanis Children’s Fund grant to purchase second-edition copies of the book “Kiwanis Sembrando Valores (Kiwanis Sowing Values).” Combined with a YouTube video series, the lessons and activities in this book will help thousands of kids learn how to make a difference in their communities. 

How you can help
The Kiwanis Children’s Fund makes grants that improve the lives of children around the world by identifying the projects that create a continuum of impact in a child’s life — one that spans their entire childhood and sets them up for a bright future. By funding projects that target the Kiwanis causes —health and nutrition, education and literacy, and youth leadership development — whether through a Kiwanis Club’s local service project or through a club’s partner, the Children’s Fund ensures that its grantmaking has the greatest possible impact.    

If you are interested in extending your and your club’s impact beyond your community, make a gift to the Children’s Fundor learn how your club canapply for a grantto help kids in your community.

Scholarship recipients share passion for service

Scholarship recipients share passion for service

The Kiwanis Children’s Fund honors 7 scholars who developed skills through Key Club and CKI. 

By Erin Chandler 

The outstanding scholars who will receive this year’s Kiwanis Children’s Fund Scholarships stood out among 459 applicants not only for what they have already accomplished, but for their commitment to creating a more just and inclusive future. Through their membership in Key Club and Circle K International, these seven students have grown as leaders and are ready to further pursue their passions to create a more equitable world in the fields of science, healthcare, business, environmental stewardship and education. The Kiwanis Children’s Fund is honored to help them continue their education in the upcoming academic year. 

Maya Narayan, Linda Canaday Memorial Scholarship
Maya Narayan is a recent graduate of Goshen High School in Indiana, U.S., where she served successively as her Key Club’s secretary, vice president and president. She also served the Indiana District of Key Club as a lieutenant governor and as secretary-treasurer. Narayan was an officer in her school’s Multicultural Youth Alliance, three-year student council class president, an active leader in her local 4-H club and a record-setting captain of the Goshen High School girls’ golf team. Narayan has a passion for singing and has participated in multiple choirs as well as in national vocal programs. She won lead roles in school and professional musicals — most recently that of Wednesday Addams in “The Addams Family.” Initially hesitant about joining Key Club, Narayan was drawn in by how it helped her grow as a leader. “That is what I appreciate most about the Key Club community,” she says. “We are a group of tomorrow’s leaders whose horizons keep broadening.” She will continue to broaden her horizons next year as a freshman at Western Michigan University. 

Swarada Kulkarni, Kiwanis Children’s Fund Scholarship
Swarada Kulkarni is a recent graduate of West Ranch High School in California, U.S. She designed the website for her school’s Key Club before going on to serve as its vice president, then as her division’s project coordinator and finally on the California-Nevada-Hawaii District’s technology team. According to her former division lieutenant governor, Kulkarni is “a true brainstormer, team worker and, most importantly, a kind-hearted person.” In addition to Key Club, Kulkarni has served as an ambassador for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society and taken on leadership roles in Academic Decathlon, Speech and Debate Club, the California Scholarship Federation and the National Art Honors Society. She is an award-winning Hindustani classical singer, world champion dragon boat paddler and volunteer in urgent care, emergency room and neonatal intensive care settings. Kulkarni is founder and CEO of the nonprofit Bridge to Hope Foundation, which works to minimize the effects of income inequality around the world. Next year, she plans to attend Vanderbilt University with the goal of becoming a neurosurgeon, providing affordable healthcare in underserved regions around the world.  

Lilian Thai, Kiwanis Children’s Fund Scholarship
Lilian Thai is the current president of Key Club International. A recent graduate of Garland High School in Texas, U.S., Thai was a member of Garland High School Key Club for four years. She served as a Key Club division governor before becoming governor of the Texas-Oklahoma District. In her role as Key Club International president, Thai launched a scholarship to increase access to the Key Club International convention, created resources for clubs in the newly chartered Philippine Luzon District, mentored fellow Key Club leaders and sought to promote diversity, equity and inclusion. “My priority has always been to serve the members of our organization with passion and love,” she says. In addition to Key Club, Thai is a member of UNICEF, served as treasurer in the National Honor Society and spent two years as captain of her varsity tennis team. She will take the skills she has acquired in her leadership roles to Southern Methodist University, where she will major in business administration. 

Brittani Meis, Circle K International Past Presidents Scholarship
Brittani Meis is a student at Colorado State University, U.S., where she is pursuing a degree in soil and crop science. She has served her school’s Circle K International Club, first as treasurer, then as president. As a club leader, Meis focused on creating more volunteer opportunities and partnerships that forged connections between CKI and the community. She even put her background in agriculture to use by partnering with The Growing Project, a community garden organization. Meis hopes to take the leadership and networking skills she has developed through CKI with her to graduate school and then around the world as she uses sustainable agriculture to help those suffering from malnutrition and poverty. Outside of CKI, Meis has served as vice president of the Striders running club, president of her school’s agronomy club and an agroecology lab assistant.  

Aleisa Tobin, John E. Mayfield Circle K International Scholarship
Aleisa Tobin is a student at Bowling Green State University in Ohio, U.S., where she is pursuing a degree in adolescent to young adult life science education. Under her leadership as vice president and president, her school’s Circle K International club increased its membership, service hours and number of projects, and it was able to secure university funding to send 10 members to the Ohio District convention for the first time. Her club’s advisor states that Tobin’s “charisma allows her to engage with her fellow students and motivate them to want to do more and make a bigger impact.” In preparation for her teaching career, Tobin is a Science and Math Education in ACTION Scholar and a board member for her university’s Science Education Council. She hopes to use the skills she has built in CKI to become a compassionate and inclusive teacher who inspires her students to learn and lead. 

Grace Nguyen, Kiwanis Children’s Fund Scholarship
Grace Nguyen is pursuing a degree in cell and molecular biology at Seattle University in Washington, U.S. She is the past secretary and current president of her school’s Circle K International club, and she takes pride in incorporating her passion for activism and social justice into her leadership. Her club’s advisor credits Nguyen with leading the club “to new and record heights” in membership and community involvement, for which the club received an Excellence in Service Award. In addition to Circle K International, Nguyen works part-time as a student peer research consultant with the Seattle University Lemieux Library and McGoldrick Learning Commons and as a student programming assistant with the Seattle University Office of Multicultural Affairs. She has held leadership roles in the Seattle University Japanese Student Association; Asian, Pacific Islander, Desi American Student Association; Vietnamese Student Association; and biology club. 

Matthew Yuro, Kiwanis Children’s Fund Scholarship
Matthew Yuro is a student at The College of New Jersey, U.S., where he is pursuing degrees in special education, elementary education and history. He has served on and chaired multiple committees for Circle K International at the club, district and international levels, and he is the current lieutenant governor of his division. At the 2022 Circle K International Convention, Yuro was honored as New Member of the Year and Outstanding International Committee Member. In his quest to become an educator, Yuro holds leadership roles in the New Jersey Education Association Preservice, Student New Jersey Education Association, Teachers of Young Children Association, history club and multiple peer mentoring organizations. He is a tutor at his college’s tutoring center, the Monroe Township School District and a private tutoring agency. “Circle K International is more than just a club for me,” Yuro says. “It’s a place for me to be my best self with a community of like-minded people who truly care for me and want to help others in the local community.” 

Visit the Kiwanis Children’s Fund Scholarship Opportunities page for information about scholarships distributed by the Children’s Fund, including who to contact with questions and award notification dates. 

Grants fund many ways to read 

Grants fund many ways to read 

Thanks to Kiwanis Children’s Fund club grants, more kids around the world are reading and learning. 

By Erin Chandler 

Kiwanis clubs around the world are turning kids into lifelong learners — and the Kiwanis Children’s Fund is there to help. In August, the Children’s Fund awarded grants to eight clubs that brought books into children’s homes and classrooms, overcame language barriers, bridged learning gaps with online apps and combated the stigmas surrounding learning disabilities. And they recruited lots of new Kiwanians along the way! 

Textbooks and other tools for learning
The Kiwanis Club of Yaoundé, Cameroon, noticed that some children in low-income areas were going to school without the necessary textbooks, while others were not attending school at all. In 2019, the club launched a project in conjunction with area partners to provide textbooks and notebooks to 100 kindergarten and primary school students. The children they helped saw dramatic progress in their academic achievement. With help from a Kiwanis Children’s Fund grant, the club hopes to meet this year’s expanded goal of delivering textbooks, notebooks, writing utensils and other school supplies to 250 children.  

The reward of reading
With help from a Kiwanis Children’s Fund club grant, the Kiwanis Club of Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, U.S., plans to install book vending machines in area elementary and middle schools that are part of the Title I program. The club estimates that over 5,000 students will be able to select books from the machines as rewards for good deeds, good grades and good citizenship. Club members will also work directly with the students. The machines will be continuously stocked with books purchased through club and school fundraisers.

A little holiday reading
Before the month of December, 60 children in kindergarten through second grade will each be given a basket of 25 giftwrapped books by the Kiwanis Club of Jefferson, Georgia, U.S. It’s all part of the club’s Literary Launch program. One book can be opened each day of December leading up to Christmas, with the addition of a toy to open on the last day. Book basket recipients are selected by local schools based on family income, so that children who might not have many books at home will be able to build their own home libraries. With help from the Kiwanis Children’s Fund, the club hopes to purchase all new books this year. 

A community culture of reading
The community of Ormond Beach, Florida, U.S., knows the Kiwanis Club of Ormond Beach as “the organization that gets books into kids’ hands.” Through their Kiwanis READS! Backers-4-Books program, the club supplies books to Ormond Beach Elementary School’s media center and classrooms. They also organize an annual sponsored book fair that lets children take home four books for free. In partnership with Volusia County Library, the club hosts a summer reading challenge and read-a-thon, and at the beginning of the school year, they honor top readers with an ice cream party. A grant from the Kiwanis Children’s Fund will help the club expand its efforts across the five Ormond Beach elementary schools. 

Literacy across languages
Three years ago, the Kiwanis Club of Plano, Texas, U.S., launched Books and Buddies, a project to provide bilingual books in English and Spanish for early readers who come from Spanish-speaking families. The project has received positive feedback from both parents and teachers. This year, a Kiwanis Children’s Fund grant will help the club print 1,500 copies of a brightly colored bilingual booklet containing a story and information about dialing 911 in an emergency. The booklets will be distributed at after-school events and to Boys and Girls Clubs, waiting rooms, Head Start programs and more. 

Apps for accessibility
Last year, the Kiwanis Club of Papine in Kingston, Jamaica, helped 130 students at the Jamaica House Basic School and Danny Williams School for the Deaf improve their literacy skills. The club served the students through a combination of the Lalilo online early childhood literacy tool, donated books, access to virtual libraries, tuition support and a reading competition. However, they had to limit the scope of the project to schools that had access to the necessary electronic devices. A Kiwanis Children’s Fund grant will help them bring students and schools with greater financial need on board with the purchase of more tablets and more accessible devices for deaf students. The Reading For the Stars program saw great success in its first year, with 80% of parents reporting improvements in their children’s reading. The club plans to continue its effectiveness based on regular community needs assessments. 

Literacy through technology
The Kiwanis Club of Imperial Beach-South Bay, California, U.S., is also turning to technology. A grant from the Kiwanis Children’s Fund will help the club purchase more subscriptions to the Readability Tutor online app — as well as tablets so more students can access it. The club will also partner with the local library for literacy events, where they will give out free books. In an area where the primary language in many homes is Spanish — and fewer than 30% of students currently meet English Language Arts curriculum standards — the club hopes to help 100 children in kindergarten through sixth grade to meaningfully enhance their English reading skills and scores through its 2023-24 Literacy Program. 

Raising awareness, fighting stigmas
The Kiwanis Club of Montego Freeport, Jamaica, is helping to end the stigma surrounding learning disabilities. Through its Learning Disabilities Awareness Program, the club partnered last year with Sam Sharpe Diagnostic and Early Intervention Centre to assess 45 students for issues such as ADHD, dyslexia and others. Those in whom learning disabilities were identified have seen improved verbal skills and academic performance, thanks to academic intervention and treatment. In addition, teachers have been trained to recognize signs of learning disabilities. Sam Sharpe is currently the only public facility in western Jamaica that diagnoses learning disabilities, with over 100 students on a waitlist, so the Montego Freeport Kiwanians decided to expand their assessment program this year. A grant from the Kiwanis Children’s Fund will help them assess 100 children and establish a support group for parents. 

How you can help
The Kiwanis Children’s Fund makes grants that improve the lives of children around the world by identifying the projects that create a continuum of impact in a child’s life — one that spans their entire childhood and sets them up for a bright future. By funding projects that target the Kiwanis causes—health and nutrition, education and literacy, and youth leadership development— whether through a Kiwanis Club’s local service project or through a club’s partner, the Children’s Fund ensures that its grantmaking has the greatest possible impact.   

If you are interested in extending your and your club’s impact beyond your community, make a gift to the Children’s Fundor learn how your club canapply for a grantto help kids in your community. 

New grant fights maternal and neonatal tetanus

New grant fights maternal and neonatal tetanus

Kiwanis works with UNICEF to support mothers and babies around the world.

By Erin Chandler 

Kiwanis International is proud to support UNICEF in its work to protect mothers and babies from maternal and neonatal tetanus (MNT) with a new grant of US$275,000 from the Kiwanis Children’s Fund.  

MNT is a painful and deadly disease that disproportionately exists in areas where poverty, lack of education and inadequate health infrastructure make unhygienic birth practices more common. Kiwanis joined UNICEF in its global campaign to eliminate MNT in 2010, and newborn deaths from tetanus have dropped significantly since then.  

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), 159 babies died every day from tetanus in 2011 — but by 2020 that number had dropped to 66. Of the 59 priority countries assessed to have more than one case of neonatal tetanus per 1,000 live births in 1999, 47 have since achieved MNT elimination, thanks to the combined efforts of UNICEF, WHO, Kiwanis and others.  

The US$275,000 grant from the Kiwanis Children’s Fund will help to facilitate mass tetanus vaccination campaigns for women of reproductive age in the 12 countries where MNT has not yet been eliminated. In addition, the grant will help fund assessments and surveys that monitor and validate the elimination of MNT, and it will help strengthen health systems to ensure the sustainability of elimination efforts.  

This latest grant comes a little over a year after a US$500,000 Children’s Fund grant was earmarked for UNICEF’S efforts to eradicate MNT in Pakistan. That grant was extended into this year when a polio outbreak and devastating floods in Pakistan made it difficult to access target regions.  

Most of the 12 countries where MNT has not yet been eliminated have similarly experienced disease outbreaks, conflict and crises that have made it difficult to deliver reliable healthcare. UNICEF will work to deliver the tetanus vaccine and necessary follow-up immunization in countries such as Pakistan, Yemen and the Central African Republic. It will also provide education and training on clean childbirth and umbilical cord care practices so that MNT levels do not rise again. 

Supporting UNICEF’S fight against MNT is just one way Kiwanis has furthered the cause of children’s health around the globe. Kiwanis also partnered with UNICEF to combat iodine deficiency, one of the world’s leading causes of preventable intellectual and developmental disabilities. Kiwanis Service Leadership Programs are currently raising funds through Trick-or-Treat for UNICEF to benefit the Brick x Brick and Start Strong: Zambia initiatives — both of which recognize the inextricable link between healthy childhood development and having a safe place to grow and learn. 

The Kiwanis Children’s Fund continues to support clubs everywhere as they carry out projects to advance the causes of health and nutrition, education and literacy, and youth leadership development — projects that create a continuum of impact in children’s lives and set them up for bright futures. You can make a gift to the Children’s Fund today to help kids in your community and throughout the world. 

Microgrants enhance kids’ health

Microgrants enhance kids’ health

The Kiwanis Children’s Fund helps seven clubs address kids’ nutrition, physical fitness and comfort

By Erin Chandler

In the months of May, June and July, the Kiwanis Children’s Fund continued to amplify Kiwanians’ ability to change lives in their communities by distributing microgrants to Kiwanis clubs with 35 or fewer members. Kiwanis Children’s Fund grants improve the lives of children around the world by identifying the projects that create a continuum of impact in a child’s life — an impact that spans their entire childhood and sets them up for a bright future. By funding projects that target the Kiwanis causes of education and literacy, health and nutrition, and youth leadership development, whether through a Kiwanis club’s local service project or through a club’s partner, the Children’s Fund ensures that its grantmaking has the greatest possible impact. 

Recent microgrants have gone to Kiwanis clubs around the world collecting school supplies, spreading literacy through physical and virtual libraries, and updating learning spaces for children. The following seven clubs received funding for projects focused on enhancing the health and nutrition of kids in need. 

More nutritious food
At Twin Rivers Elementary School in McKeesport, Pennsylvania, U.S., 100% of the students qualify for the free lunch program. For the past two years, the Kiwanis Club of McKeesport White Oak has stepped in to make sure those students with the greatest need do not go hungry over the weekends with their Weekend Food Bag program. Kiwanis club members donate and pack food each week for the students to take home on Fridays throughout the school year. Last year, they gave a total of 1,080 bags of food to 30 students. A Kiwanis Children’s Fund microgrant will help the club offer greater quantities of more nutritious food as they extend the program into the 2023-24 school year. 

Summer meals
The Kiwanis Club of Meramec Valley Community, Missouri, U.S., is teaming up with the Valley Park School District and several other local service organizations to make sure students up to age 18 have enough food during the summer months, when school is not in session. Volunteers use school kitchen and lunchroom facilities to store and pack food into lunch bags, which they distribute three times a week at three community sites. The club estimates that 50-75 children will benefit from the program, thanks to the food they purchase with the help of a Kiwanis Children’s Fund microgrant.  

Bigger fridge, less hunger
For the past year, the Kiwanis Club of Bachten de Kupe, La Joconde, West Flanders, Belgium, has addressed both food waste and hunger in its community by turning surplus food from farms and businesses into food packages for around 1,000 children in need. Currently, one in eight children in Belgium struggle with food insecurity, and the number is growing beyond the club’s ability to keep up with the demand. A microgrant from the Kiwanis Children’s Fund will allow the club to purchase a larger refrigerator and double the number of children the project serves.  

Fresh veggies for school lunches
The Kiwanis Club of Leisure World, Silver Spring, Maryland, U.S., has a longstanding relationship with Harmony Hills Elementary School, donating clothes and books to students there. Now members are stepping in to boost the students’ nutrition as well. With help from a Kiwanis Children’s Fund microgrant, the club will donate vegetables from its community garden plot to children who are eligible for free or reduced-price lunches. Eight club members will weed, water and manage the garden.  

Outdoor adventures
With help from a Kiwanis Children’s Fund microgrant, members of the Kiwanis Club of Corabia, Romania, will organize and run AdventureCAMP, a five-day mountain camp for children. Kids involved in the camp will spend time in the great outdoors, participating in two workshops per day on topics including personal development, first aid, road safety, reading a compass, building a campfire, hiking, climbing, ziplining and photography. Club members hope that more kids will reach their potential physically, mentally and socially thanks to their time at the camp.  

Play in a time of transition
When members of the Kiwanis Club of Blairsville, Georgia, U.S., learned that a transition foster care home was being built in their community, they immediately looked for a way to help make it a safe, comfortable place for children waiting for a placement. With help from a Kiwanis Children’s Fund microgrant, the club will purchase a playset for Isaiah House #117. Club members will assemble the equipment with the help of their Key Club and local Eagle Scouts. They hope the playset will be a safe and fun haven for hundreds of kids over the years. 

Comfort is a warm blanket
This year, the Kiwanis Club of Mitchell, South Dakota, U.S., has donated 25 fleece tie blankets to first responders, who give them to children in crisis situations. The club’s annual baseball tournament fundraiser was rained out, preventing members from buying supplies for more. A microgrant from the Kiwanis Children’s Fund will help them purchase supplies to meet their goal of making at least 50 blankets per year going forward. Kiwanians schedule days with family and friends to make the blankets. They hope the blankets will help children “know that their community cares about them and will help in their time of need.” 

How you can help
If you want to amplify your impact to reach children around the world through the Kiwanis causes of health and nutrition, education and literacy, and youth leadership development, you can make a gift to the Children’s Fund or learn how your club can apply for a grant to help kids in your community.

You can learn more about Kiwanis Children’s Fund microgrants on