11 benefits of volunteering

11 benefits of volunteering

Sometimes helping others helps you as well

The world has many urgent issues — food insecurity, wars and conflicts, infectious disease, water shortages, extreme poverty. Clearly, volunteering matters. But the benefits go beyond altruism. Research shows that it also provides benefits to the volunteer, some of which are surprising. Here are 11 of them:

  • The power to change lives. Whether you’re collecting supplies for a food bank, building a home for a family or fostering or adopting an abandoned or abused pet, you’re making a tangible change in a person’s (or animal’s) life. Even better, you’re also giving them hope.   
  • The ability to involve more people. When you volunteer, you’re raising awareness for an organization and its cause. And you often mention your service to friends and family — perhaps even without noticing you’re doing it. You might even post something about it on your social media platforms, which spread the word. That can encourage more people to get involved.   
  • A physical feeling of satisfaction. There’s scientific evidence that volunteering positively affects your body. Studies show that when people donate to charity, either financially or through volunteering, they trigger the mesolimbic system — the portion of the brain responsible for feelings of reward. The brain releases feel-good chemicals, spurring you to perform more kind acts. Psychologists call it “helper’s high.”  
  • New friends and stronger friendships. When you help others, you give off positive vibes, which can positively influence peers and improve your friendships, creating strong, lasting bonds. For instance, if you’re volunteering to mentor children, chances are good you’ll meet people who care about young children. Volunteering is an excellent way to find like-minded people.  
  • Connection and confidence. Silence the inner voice that’s saying you’re not enough! People who volunteer have been found to have higher self-esteem and overall well-being. Experts explain that the more connection you feel, the higher your self-esteem.   
  • Social and networking skills. Volunteering is a social activity — so it can build up your list of important contacts. For example, the people you volunteer with are great candidates for recommendation letters. After all, these are the people who have seen you interact with others and handle new challenges.  
  • A readiness to take on the world. People who participate in volunteer work feel rewarded and more fulfilled. Volunteers report that helping others enriches their sense of purpose and empowers them.  
  • Value to schools and employers. Volunteer experience can set you apart from other applicants for jobs and colleges. Your volunteer experience tells them that you are ambitious, care about your community and are willing to put in the work that brings change.   
  • A chance to pay it forward. Kindness is contagious. Simply seeing someone help another person gives us a good feeling. And that inspires us to do something altruistic ourselves.   
  • A sense that you have more time. Volunteering won’t literally give you more than 24 hours in a day. But it makes those hours seem more fulfilling. In fact, research shows that those who volunteer their time feel like they have more time.   
  • Feelings of gratitude. Helping others is a wonderful way to gain perspective on your own situation, and that can make you more appreciative of what you have.
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. 

Building strength and pursuing dreams in Key Club

Building strength and pursuing dreams in Key Club

Brooke Moreland’s family was homeless when she joined Key Club. The skills and “grit” she built there took her to CKI, Harvard and beyond. 

By Julie Saetre

In 2003, on Brooke Moreland’s first day at Broad Ripple High School in Indianapolis, Indiana, U.S., she was looking for her locker when she came across of group of students sitting on the floor, painting a banner for a football game. She peered into the classroom behind the students and saw a woman observing the creative session. “What are you guys doing?” she asked the woman. 

The answer: The students were part of Key Club International, a community service organization for high school students in the Kiwanis International family. 

Intrigued, Moreland began attending Key Club meetings and quickly became invested in the group’s many service opportunities. Eventually, she became the club’s president. 

It wasn’t such an unusual way to become involved with Key Club — but Moreland’s personal situation at the time was. 

“I started my service with Kiwanis at a really interesting point in life,” she says. “When I was in high school, our family lost our home. So we lived in a couple of shelters across the city. What was really significant, even through that hardship, was that I still kept volunteering.” 

The grit to keep going
Moreland credits Key Club, and the support and mentorship of that club advisor she spoke to the first day, with helping her develop the strength and determination to continue her leadership and service journey. 

She calls it “grit.” And she defines it this way: “No matter your circumstances, your background, just having that firmness of mind or spirit, that unyielding charge, that in the face of hardship, you can still serve — even being that 16-year-old who lost their home — and people can serve you.” 

It’s not surprising, then, that when Moreland attended Butler University in Indianapolis after high school graduation, she would bring that commitment to service with her. Butler’s Circle K International club was inactive when Moreland began her studies in 2007, so she contacted an upperclassman and reactivated the club. She would go on to serve as lieutenant governor for the CKI Metro-Fields Division. 

“If you see it, you’re already there”
As a resident assistant in one of the university’s dorms, Moreland implemented service-learning opportunities for those rooming there. One of those was a program she called Holding Hands with Our Future, which she launched in the fall 2008. Her mother had started a book club for Moreland’s 7-year-old brother and wanted to show the young members where reading and literacy could take them.  

Moreland invited the group to Butler for a day. She paired each child with a resident at her dorm. In the morning, the children attended classes with their new mentors, then shared lunch and talked about the opportunities college could offer. 

“Everyone liked it so much, we continued the program in the second semester,” she says. “It became so popular that I founded a nonprofit called the Rose of Hope Foundation when I was 19. That was my first experience giving birth to a service-learning program meant to impact others.” 

Rose of Hope targeted students who didn’t believe they could go to a college or university. They weren’t doing well in school, and they didn’t see education after high school as a realistic goal. 

“We wanted to bring them on campus and get them really excited about the possibility,” Moreland says. “The main theme was, ‘If you can see it, you’re already there.’ It sounds like magic, but it’s true. If you see yourself somewhere, you start wanting to talk to people who value being there. You start doing better because you want to be there. You become integrated into this community of value. That puts you on a different trajectory. It demystifies the barriers that we put into our own minds.” 

A full-circle moment
Moreland would earn a master’s degree through the Indiana University-Bloomington Higher Education and Student Affairs program and receive a doctorate from Indiana Wesleyan University’s Organizational Leadership and complete a graduate certificate program from Harvard with the CAEL program in Cambridge, Massachusetts, U.S. 

Today, she works at the Indiana University School of Education – Indianapolis as associate director for Community Engagement and Coalition Building in the Collaborative for Equitable and Inclusive STEM Learning (CEISL). CEISL is a set of grant-funded initiatives designed to provide sustainable support in lifelong learning with technology — especially for learners from structurally marginalized identities and communities. 

It’s a long way from the challenges she confronted in a family facing homelessness. 

“To come out on the other side and now be working, mentoring and continuing service leadership — it’s a full-circle moment,” she says. “It’s beyond just a philosophical call to action. It becomes the fabric of someone’s mindset. You have the opportunity to then make your mark in the world.  

“Anytime I’m tapped to volunteer or speak for anything Kiwanis, I’m always onboard.” 

Working with others to do more good

Working with others to do more good

Kiwanis clubs around the world joined other service organizations to help even more communities. 

Community service took center stage September 11-17 for the third annual Celebrate Community, a weeklong joint initiative from Kiwanis International, Lions Clubs International, Optimist International and Rotary International. 

Why collaborate with other service organizations? To help even more communities and kids! Plus, members of participating service organizations had the chance to learn more about one another — and see how teamwork, not competition, makes our world better.  

Kiwanis clubs around the world highlighted their projects on social media using the hashtag #CelebrateCommunity. Here are just a few: 

  • The Kiwanis Club of Hendersonville, North Carolina, U.S., collaborated with two Rotary clubs and a Lions club to collect and deliver 3,760 diapers and 136 packs of baby wipes to the Children & Family Resource Center. Aktion Club was involved too. “Children & Family Resource Center is so thankful to be the recipient of such generosity in our community,” says Jamie Wiener, the center’s executive director. “We provide roughly 400 children each month with diapers and formula so moms and dads don’t have to choose between food, utilities and other expenses over the health and safety of their baby.” 
  • Kiwanians in India, a provisional Kiwanis district, joined forces with Lions Clubs International by painting smiles on the faces of children through the distribution of stationery and vibrant painting colors, all in the spirit of spreading boundless joy.  
  • In Evanston, Illinois, U.S., service clubs collaborated to perform a range of community service activities, culminating in a cleanup at the International Friendship Garden. “The International Friendship Garden is a symbol of community unity, and we are eager to make it shine,” says Evanston Rotary Club President Shawn Iles.  
  • The Kiwanis Club of Grand Cayman co-organized a beach walk with Lions, Optimist and Rotary club members, raising more than $1,000 for the Cayman Islands Community Food Bank.   
  • Club Kiwanis Playas in Panama teamed up with a Lions Club to donate food to students at the El Farallón School. “El Farallón is a fishermen community. These kids mostly belong to families whose economy depend on the catch of the day,” says club President Lanny Lowe. “Food insecurity and malnutrition are issues that the school helps solve, and Club Kiwanis Playas looks forward to the school having enough food supply to feed the kids.” 
  • The Kiwanis Club of Lebanon, Indiana, U.S. co-hosted an intergenerational ice cream social for more than 120 senior living community residents, family members and Lebanon High School students. “It was a great night for all involved,” says Amy Hammerle, Lebanon Kiwanis Club president. “Coming together with the Lebanon Lion and Rotary clubs to serve these special seniors was rewarding and so much fun.”  
  • Kiwanis and Circle K International members in Ontario, Canada, collaborated with Rotary Club members to fill backpacks with school supplies for kids in need. “I enjoyed working alongside people I knew who genuinely wanted to help their community,” says University of Windsor CKI member Abdullah Nadeem. “The energy was amazing. I remember how everyone was smiling and trying to match the notebooks with the color of the backpacks, and it was these small gestures that made me realize how much this project meant to the volunteers and how they knew they were making a difference.”

“We are thankful for this wonderful opportunity to have worked with other service clubs to create stronger communities around the world as part of Celebrate Community,” says 2022-23 Kiwanis International President Bert West.

Did you participate in Celebrate Community this year? Don’t forget to submit your joint project for possible inclusion in upcoming Kiwanis communications. 


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.