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Thursday, September 5, 2019

What to do when the children head back-to-school

The last official summer holiday has taken place and we can now say that in most areas in the Pacific
Northwest District the 2019-2020 school year is underway!

Back-to-school time brings many opportunities for Optimist Clubs to interact with children. From back-to-school parties to athletics and club involvement, students of all ages are getting back into the routine. Caring adults such as Optimist Club members can make a difference by supporting their efforts. Sometimes all they need to succeed is a little extra encouragement, a friendly voice that tells them, have a great day or you're doing a great job, keep it up. Sometimes they need more like school supplies, tutoring, or safe pathways to and from school. Optimist Clubs might want to connect with their local elementary and middle schools to see if there is a way to support their students and their schools that perhaps haven't been addressed by others.

Now is the time to reach out to the teachers in middle school and high school to discuss the Optimist International Scholarship Contests. The scholarship programs have been part of Optimist International's outreach since 1928 when the Optimist International Oratorical Contest was first held. Today the organization offers three opportunities for students to earn scholarships: the Essay Contest, Oratorical World Championships and the Communications Contest for Deaf and Hard of Hearing (CCDHH)students.

All scholarship contests begin at the club level. Optimist Clubs host the Essay Contest in the fall with all winning club entries submitted to the District Chairperson by February 28. The Oratorical Contest is held in the Spring in time for the finalist to attend the Zone Contest which date is set by the Lt. Governor before the third quarter District meeting.  The CCDHH takes place as advised by their District.

The official topic for the 2019-2020 Essay Contest is "Is Optimism the Key to Achieving the Dreams you iMagine?" Download the entry form.

The official topic for the 2019-20 Optimist International Oratorical World Championships is “Just iMagine a World without Boundaries.” Download the entry form.

The official topic for the 2019-20 Optimist International CCDHH is “Just iMagine a World without Boundaries.” Download the entry form.

It's also a great time of year to reach out to teachers, principals, counselors, and other school personnel to invite them to join an Optimist Club. There is a special offer from Optimist International that gives teachers one-year of membership for $30. To take advantage of this offer, the Optimist Club must enroll the new member by September 30. We hope that the program is renewed for 2019-2020, but why wait? Invite a teacher to join your Optimist Club today!

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