NYYP Kiwanis

Serving the Children of the World.

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Why I'm a Kiwanian

Posted by New York Young Professionals on February 12, 2014 at 11:45 PM Comments comments (0)

So many times I've been asked "why are you a Kiwanian?" I've been asked what I'm doing in an "old man club" or why I'd pay to do service. I always jump at the chance to share my reasons, because ultimately, Kiwanis is so much more than most people realize. When faced with these questions, I like to drive home a few points that are important to me.

Yes, you can always volunteer for free and often you can see a direct impact of your work. I often do that as part of Kiwanis. What I also do with Kiwanis is see my small direct impact become a part of something larger than I could ever accomplish on my own. One or two people alone cannot eradicate disease, save the lives of thousands of women and children, sponsor thousands of young people in their pursuit to becoming servant leaders... Alone, I can mentor a few children. I can hopefully inspire them to serve, to be good citizens of the world, and make an impact in their community. But my club? My club can sponsor many SLPs, each with dozens of members. I can be a small part of a big mentorship effort and I can see these young people serve and lead.

When I make a donation, I feel like I've made an impact. But when my donation is added to my club's, and my club's is added to my district's and so on, over $46 million is raised to eliminate MNT. That is why I "pay to serve."

I also pay to be a part of a network of an incredibly diverse, knowledgeable, and experienced Kiwanians across the globe. I pay for the opportunity to become a better leader through workshops and conferences, learning through the perspective of my local community and state, of my country, and, most interesting for me, my peers around the globe. While some may view Kiwanians as old business men, that perception couldn't be farther from the truth. Kiwanians are young, old, and somewhere in between. They are men and women. They are educators, lawyers, business owners, medical professionals, caregivers, and public servants. They come from all walks of life. They meet for lunch or dinner, or maybe the meet online. They fundraise and write checks and they do hands on service, too. Kiwanis is not a one-size-fits-all organization. There is something different for everyone and the options continue to grow.

I've been a member of the Kiwanis family for nearly half of my life. Through Key Club, Circle K, and Kiwanis, I have made some of the most wonderful friends and formed relationships with a unique group of individuals over a shared passion. For me, Kiwanis is so much more than service, but it is service at its heart, and as a global organization, that service can make a much, much bigger impact.

--Kadie Mullins, Club President

 

 

 

 

World Food Programme: February's Service Initiative

Posted by New York Young Professionals on February 11, 2014 at 11:15 PM Comments comments (0)

 

Did you know 842 million people in the world do not have enough to eat? Did you know that poor nutrition causes nearly half of deaths in children under five; that 3.1 million children die each year due to poor nutrition? 66 million primary school-aged children attend class hungry across the developing world each day. According to the World Food Programme calculations, on $3.2 billion is needed per year to reach all 66 million hungry school-age children.

 

The World Food Programme is the world’s largest humanitarian agency fighting hunger worldwide. Part of the United Nations systems, WFP is voluntarily funded and was developed in 1961 to pursue “a vision of the world in which every man, woman and child has access at all times to the food needed for an active and healthy lifestyle.” Each year, WFP reaches an average of 90 million people with food assistance in 80 countries with 13,500 people working for the organization.

 

Knowledge is half the battle. You can make a difference today. By visiting www.wfp.org/get-invovled you can join the community and keep up to date with the fight against hunger. You can add a banner to your webpage, share your new knowledge on social media, or simply “like” WFP on Facebook. You can take the Hunger Quiz, play Freerice and earn rice to be delivered to those in need, or donate. You can fundraise or encourage your friends and family to donate as well.

 

Together, NYYP can make a difference!

--Kadie Mullins, Club President

 

Random Acts of Kindness Week

Posted by New York Young Professionals on February 11, 2014 at 12:45 AM Comments comments (0)

Valentine’s Day is not the only day this week where we get to celebrate by doing nice things for one another. Random Acts of Kindness Week is February 10-16 which is an annual celebration of kindness across the globe. See below or check out http://www.randomactsofkindness.org/kindness-ideas for ways to participate.

 

March for Dimes

Posted by New York Young Professionals on February 11, 2014 at 12:05 AM Comments comments (0)

By. Kristen Reed

March is right around the corner and with Spring on its way there is no better time than now to support the March of Dimes. You can do this by getting together with local Kiwanis Family members to make a difference. In addition, feel free to host projects with your companies and agencies to show them how they too can contribute to making a difference in the world through Kiwanis.

1.) Donate Your Unwanted Cell Phones

Due to the constant demand for better, slicker, and faster phones, I'm sure you have at least one or two used phones lying around the house. Don't let them collect dust; donate them to March of Dimes! The phones will be recycled and refurbished then sold - all proceeds are used to improve the health of babies through prevention of birth complications. Donating your phone also helps reduce electronic waste!

2.) Wristbands for Awareness

Sell March of Dimes Wristbands to both fundraise and raise awareness at the same time. Promote the cause to your friends, families, and co-workers. Virtual wristbands are also available (and you can customize them)!

3.) FB/Blog Widgets

An easy way to raise money is to place a badge on your Facebook page or Blog. Show others your passion for March of Dimes and they'll be inspired to donate towards your cause.

4.) Virtual Support

Supporting a cause doesn't always mean leaving to house to advocate and fundraise. You can help out just by lending an ear or a shoulder and showing your support through kind words. Join in online discussions and forums and read the stories of families who have been affected by premature birth or birth defects.

 

10 Service Projects to do at Home with Your Children

Posted by New York Young Professionals on February 10, 2014 at 11:55 PM Comments comments (0)

By. Kristen Reed

One of the benefits of being in Kiwanis includes fellowship with members and organizations. We also get the unique opportunity to share our service projects with loved ones at home. Try out some of these fun service projects at home with your young children to show them the joy that service can bring.

Puff Paint Socks - decorate the soles of socks with puff paint to create safety grips for senior citizens in nursing homes.

Warm Blankets - make homemade fleece blankets by tying the ends of long yards of fleece together to donate to your local neonatal intensive care unit waiting room.

Letters from Home - write Thank You letters and cards to soldiers over-seas.

Coloring Books - create coloring books by drawing objects on white paper with blank markers to donate to your local library or daycare center.

Peanut Butter Jelly Time - make peanut butter and jelly sandwiches to donate to your local food pantry or neighborhood center.

Keep Warm - host a "Learn How to Knit" session for your club and make scarfs, hats, and mittens to keep children warm this winter. Invite your children to attend this meeting and make it a fun family event!

Door Stoppers - paint holiday themed door stoppers to give away to bring cheer to your local nursing home or hospital.

Pillow Hugs - Decorate plain white pillow cases with sunshine and flowers to make Pillow Hugs for your local hospital or kid's camp.

Play Dough - Make and mix homemade play dough and donate it to your campus day care center or kid's library.

 

Kiwanis One Day

Posted by New York Young Professionals on February 10, 2014 at 7:20 AM Comments comments (0)

 

Every April, Kiwanis clubs around the world join together in a day of service. Kiwanis One Day is a global effort symbolizing the great impact one individual can make, especially when they team up with their communities. When one individual inspires their clubs, and their communities, the change spreads. When one Kiwanian choses to make a difference, there is a ripple effect around the world. This year, Kiwanis will celebrate Kiwanis One Day on April 5 and NYYP members will be involved from all over the country.

In the past, Kiwanis clubs have packed 50,000 meals to ship to Haitian schoolchildren, built entire parks, and hosted community wide technology recycling events. You can find members building homes and libraries, preparing and serving meals, establishing community gardens, and refurbishing camp grounds. Thousands of hours are dedicated to improving communities across the globe.

 

Have you cleared your schedule for April 5?

 

-- Kadie Mullins, Club President

2014 New York District Kiwanis Mid-Year Conference

Posted by New York Young Professionals on February 10, 2014 at 7:00 AM Comments comments (0)

 

The New York District Kiwanis Mid-Year Conference is coming up on February 20-23, 2014 at the Holiday Inn in Albany, NY. Today is the last day for online hotel registration - make sure to register today at www.kiwanis-ny.org! Online registration continues until February 17th and on-site registration will also be available.

The Mid-Year Conference is a great opportunity to meet other Kiwanians and to learn more about the Kiwanis-Family. There will be several forums on topics such as the EliMiNaTe Project, Marketing Media and Club Growth. After opening session there will be a 70’s themed Rock and Roll Karaoke and an ice cream social – costumes are encouraged! Immediate Past Gov. Al Norato Jr. and his 2012-2013 District Board will be honored for their service and awards will also be handed out on Saturday night. Hope you can make it!

 

--Heather Waite, Club Editor

 

SCAW 101

Posted by New York Young Professionals on February 10, 2014 at 6:15 AM Comments comments (0)

By. Kristen Reed

Sleeping Children Around the World (SCAW) is a service initiative program for Aktion clubs but is open to involvement from all Kiwanis family branches. They strive to provide bed kits to needy children all over the world, especially in developing countries, that may not have adequate supplies to create a safe and warm place to sleep. All materials are collected through donated materials or monetary gifts. To find more information on how to get involved visit the Aktion club link on www.kiwanis.org.

 

 

 

Kids Against Hunger - Meeting the Million Meal Mark

Posted by New York Young Professionals on December 2, 2013 at 8:45 PM Comments comments (0)



I was first introduced to the organization Kids Against Hunger through a Key Club district convention in 2006. (Thanks, Key Club!) Even then, the organization’s mission—feeding the hungry here and the starving abroad while teaching children the power of volunteerism—got under my skin because it showed me that with a little teamwork, I could help alleviate global hunger.

The concept touched me deeply, and it still does—even more so now that I have a Master’s in Development Studies and conduct research on the impact of politics on aid effectiveness and global hunger. In 2011, after years of continuing to participate in as many packagings around Michigan as I could, I decided to host my own—raising $2,800 and securing 175 volunteers to package 10,000.

When I moved to Indianapolis, and connected with my new home state’s satellite, the level of involvement and passion I had for the organization led them to ask me to become a Red Shirt Team member able to help facilitate packaging sessions. I also agreed to become part of the group planning the annual million meal marathon, using my communications and public relations skills to serve the sponsorship and marketing committee. This event was conceived of three years ago by our director, who at the time planned and executed it with only the assistance of three others!





On November 5th, 4,000 volunteers came together with one mission: to pack as close to one million meals as possible. The event began at 9 am, and by 9:02 am, I was already crying. Attendees were welcomed to Lucas Oil Stadium (the home of the Indianapolis Colts) by representatives of the organizations their work would benefit, and one of them—a minister from Haiti named Pierre—told us of the impact that Kids Against Hunger’s meals had on his students and how grateful he was to lessen the pain of hunger that he himself felt as a child. His testimony was also a strong testament to our accountability—when the Air Force delivers our meals to Haiti, he personally distributes them to those who need them most.


Tears continued to well up throughout the morning as I realized how quickly our total was climbing. By 11 am, volunteers from schools and companies all across the Indianapolis area had packed an excess of 300,000 meals—an astounding total when you consider that each of the four shifts needed to pack 250,000 to enable us to safely reach our million meal mark. As someone who had never been part of a pack whose total exceeded 19,000 meals, reporting this total on our social media accounts was an emotional realization.


Throughout the day, as I continued to interact with our volunteers as the event photographer, I recorded nothing but happiness and determination from volunteers of all ages and ethnicities. After encouraging visits from Butler University cheerleaders, Star Wars Indiana, and several Indianapolis Colts players, when it became clear around 6:30 pm that we would cross the million meal mark for the first time in the event’s three year history, my emotions surged again as I realized that our hard work paid off. Our final total, announced after a flurry of balloons and shouting as we passed one million, was 1,003,019,304!





When I finally went home and got some much needed rest, I slept restlessly. The first thing I did the next morning was to check Facebook—to make sure that all the updates and photos of our progress I thought I had posted were actually real. I feel so blessed to have worked with such a committed group of Kids Against Hunger of Central Indiana volunteers to execute the event—and even more privileged to have supported the work of so many dedicated and selfless volunteers. Days like that are why I serve. Although I hope that someday in the not-so-distant future I can continue to understand and combat the reasons why global hunger continues as a diplomat, researcher and/or aid worker, in serving with Kids Against Hunger I can be confident that I am working to stem the tide of starvation.


---Courtney Meyer, NYYP President-Elect



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