Optimist International Programs

Childhood Cancer Campaign
The Childhood Cancer Campaign was established by Optimist International in 2001 with the mission of “being the leading force to rid the world of childhood cancer.” Since the program’s inception, Clubs in every District have participated in various activities focused on building awareness of the disease, providing assistance for children and their families, and supporting research to find a cure. June has been designated as Optimist Childhood Cancer Awareness Month.

Scholarship Contests
Optimist International sponsors three scholarship contests for students to earn money to pursue opportunities in higher education: the Communication Contest for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing (CCDHH), the Essay Contest and the Oratorical Contest.

Internet Safety
The Internet Safety program was established in December 2008 with the focus of providing Clubs with resources to educate both young people and their parents about potential dangers on the internet and offering information about safe practices while online.

Community Activities
Optimist International encourages Clubs to participate in three community activities: Respect for Law/Promotion of Non-Violence, Youth Appreciation and Youth Safety. Since Clubs are autonomous, Optimists have the flexibility to serve the youth of their community in any way they see fit. Members may participate in these activities in an effort to fulfill a need in their area, such as teaching youth about skateboard safety if a new skate park just opened.

Planning Guides
The program planning guides are helpful, step-by-step instruction manuals that assist Clubs with organizing and conducting the Optimist International Programs and include all necessary applications, guidelines and forms. Guides for the Community Activities contain suggested ideas for activities and events.

Community Projects Awards
The Community Projects Awards (CPA) Program is an annual competition that recognizes Clubs for their community service and fundraising activities. The program stimulates membership involvement, gives the Club a reference book that can be used as a guide for organizing a similar activity in the future and assists the organization in acquiring information to share with other Clubs looking for a new project or fundraiser. Submission of a CPA entry to the District is an Honor Club requirement.

Programs Training Resources
Have you ever wanted to learn more about an Optimist program or activity? Maybe you’ve heard about the Community Needs Assessment or the Online Resource Library, but you’re not sure where to find them or how to use them. Optimists can now find all of their training resources for programs in one place.

Online Resource Library
The Resource Library provides new and innovative program and fundraiser ideas for Clubs to utilize. Members can access information on a variety of projects, including set-up steps, materials needed and a contact for more details. The Library also provides information about the endorsed organizations, their programs and a contact person.

Package Programs
Package Programs are a resource that has been developed to assist Clubs from beginning (planning) to the end (follow-up) of certain projects. The packages include suggested timelines, job descriptions and various forms and letters that would be used in the project.

Endorsed Organizations
Endorsed Organizations are organizations that have submitted an application regarding their mission, finances and description of their programs to the International Activities Committee for review. These organizations have been found to be in good standing and to share the same principles as Optimist International. Each of these organizations is recommended as a beneficial resource for Optimist Clubs to utilize.

Programs Brochure
This helpful brochure provides an overview of each of the Optimist International programs and community activities.

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