September 13, 2022


Dear Optimist Club Officers:


Thank you for embracing the mission of Optimist International: “By providing hope and positive vision, Optimists bring out the best in youth, our communities, and ourselves.” It is our sincere hope that by developing and volunteering as an Optimist, you truly are bringing out the best in yourself, your community and all the youth your club serves.


In 2017, we launched this International Club Development Pilot Project to “jump-start” the process of spreading Optimism throughout the globe, and during the past five years, we have made some wonderful new friends and learned some critical lessons.


At the Optimist International Annual Convention in July, the International Board of Directors did vote to end the International Club Development Pilot Project and transition clubs built under the pilot project into our regular club structure per the Optimist International Bylaws. Under this pilot project, your club was brought into Optimist International under a deeply discounted membership dues rate; the OI Bylaws have two recognized categories for regular members based on the country the club resides within: 

    “Countries shall be defined as developed or developing in accordance with the designation of

     the United Nations. Clubs in developed countries shall pay dues as published by Optimist

     International prior to next fiscal year. Clubs in developing countries shall pay a reduced

     amount of dues as published by Optimist International prior to next fiscal year.” 

     [Developed countries have an HDI score of .80 or above; developing countries have an

     HDI score of .79 or below]


Recognizing the challenge such a change may have on your club, the Board of Directors have created a three-year, graduated dues model to bring your club into alignment with the current dues structure of Optimist International; this model will bring your annual dues up at a rate of $10 USD per member, per year for the next two years (October 2022 – September 2023; October 2023 – 2024) then bring you to published dues amount for the October 2024 -September 2025 Optimist year. 

Additionally, your club will also be moved to the automated dues billing process, which permits your club to choose annual, semi-annual or quarterly dues billing/payment options. Annual dues are assessed in October each year. Your club will also no longer have an “affiliation fee” assessed to it, if you have a North American Sponsor Club, we will be notifying that club of this change as well.

We strongly encourage you to reach out to your sponsor Club and continue your dialogue with that club.  These changes could strengthen the relationship between your Club and your sponsor club as we continue efforts toward cultural enrichment between Optimists in your country and Optimists in North America.

In Optimism, 

Patsy Garner                                            Cheryl L. Brenn                     

Optimist International President               Executive Director

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