New Programs spark creativity, community

It is with the utmost excitement that we are unveiling several new arts and community programs for this year. These developments will offer new avenues for Optimists to serve youth and their communities.

We are proud to offer:
Optimist Visual Arts Competition 
Students age 11 and younger can participate in painting or drawing with the theme "iMagine Being an Optimist." Competition will take place at both the Club and International levels with International winners receiving scholarships of $250, $150 and $100.

Optimist Photography Competition
Students will submit photos that best exemplify the Optimist Creed. This competition will be based at the Club level, and will be open to all students who have not yet started post-secondary education.

Kids Speak Out
This is an old favorite with fresh, new energy. Students age 11 and younger can practice for the Optimist Oratorical competition while Clubs can foster a pool of future Oratorical participants. This year's theme is "iMagine Being an Optimist."

iMagine--A Kaleidoscope of the Performing Arts
Create your own performing arts showcase to highlight the talent in your community! Our new guide to help you make your event a success from auditions to encore!

Optimists Spark Fun in the Park
Work with JOI, College Optimist Clubs and other adult Optimists to create a fun day in a local park for children of all ability levels. Our new guide will offer activity ideas, promotion ideas, practical advice and more.

Optimist Day, Feb. 6, 2020

We are less than two months away from Optimist Day! On February 6, 2020, Optimists are asked to be visible examples of Optimism. Wear T-shirts, jackets, hats and all of your other Optimist gear. This is a great day to perform a small service project with your Club members.
Club and District Trainer Classes Coming Up

Join us Saturday, Jan. 11, for Club and District Trainer Classes at Optimist International Headquarters in St. Louis, Missouri. These classes are part of the Certified Trainer program for those Members who want to develop training and presentation skills.

The Club Trainer class is the first step in the Certified Trainer program. The District Trainer class is for those that have completed the Club Trainer Class and have had some experience in creating and providing training. Six months must have passed between completing the Club Trainer class and taking the District Trainer class.

Pre-Registration for these classes is required by January 3, 2020. To register, send your name and which class you would like to take to [email protected].
Opt for Oratorical: Next webinar shows you how!
Dec. 16 How to Hold a Club Oratorical Contest  
Does your Club want to start having an Oratorical contest but doesn’t know how? Join us for this webinar that will take you through the steps from beginning to end on planning and holding a Club Oratorical contest! Register here.

For a look at what this competition can do for young people, take a look at our original Optimist International Oratorical World Champion, Cameron Tyler, in the video above.

OI Foundation offers Childhood Health and Wellness Grants

The Optimist International Foundation is excited to offer its first round of grants for Childhood Health and Wellness. This program will award grants of $250 to $1,000 to Clubs doing projects in the areas of Healthy Lifestyles, Chronic Diseases, Mental Health and Disabilities.

The first deadline to apply for this grant is February 29, 2020.

Visit for more information.
Centennial Coins...going, going...almost gone!

A limited quantity of the Optimist International Foundation's Centennial Coins remain from our 2019 Celebration available for a $100 donation. The proceeds from these coins will assist the launch of the new Childhood Health and Wellness program. Call the Optimist International Foundation office at 800-500-8130 for more information.
Canadian Children's Optimist Foundation

In this season of joy and sharing, the Canadian Children’s Optimist Foundation had decided to go the extra mile for the Children and youth. Watch the video below for a special announcement by CCOF President Rod McKendrick.

How Fit is Your Club?

This year’s District Club Fitness Chairs are emailing all Clubs a special card for the

The Club Fitness Scorecard is to be completed and returned to your District Club Fitness Chair by January 15, 2020. Your club’s score will reflect its strengths and challenges, and will be shared with a district team that will assist you in achieving your goal of being a successful optimist club.
Official Optimist International Suppliers

United States and the Caribbean:
Ansell's Awards and Specialties

Members outside of the U.S., Canada and the Caribbean may order from either vendor.
Contact the International Board of Directors 

If you have comments, concerns or suggestions for the International Board of Directors, please send to  [email protected]