The Optimist International Foundation, an international not-for-profit 501(c)(3) charitable organization, was organized in 1971 to allow tax deductible contributions to be made for the purpose of providing support to the charitable, literary or educational purposes of Optimist International. A similar organization was organized in Canada in 1988. Together they are know as "The Foundations".
Over $150,000 in scholarships are awarded annually in public speaking contests involving over 40,000 boys and girls age 15 and under.
More than $60,000 in college scholarships are awarded annually in the Communications Contest for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing (CCDHH) - an opportunity for hearing impaired youths to speak out.
Junior Optimist Octagon International (JOOI) youth organizations with 20,000+ members receive substantial support from The Foundations.
Over 1.5 million youth are served annually by programs funded by The Foundations.
Lifetime Recognition Levels
Accumulated lifetime contributions are recognized by presentation of lapel pins for individuals and banner patches for clubs at the following levels:
Tax and Charitable Status of the Optimist
Optimist International Foundation is 501(c)(3) registered charity in the
2008-2009 Goal - $1 Million in Unrestricted Giving
Here's how YOU can help the Foundation reach that goal:
Dime A Day - $36.50 receive a Dime A
Day lapel pin
Century Circle - Gift of $100-$249 and receive a static cling
suitable for vehicle or office
President's Club - Initial gift of $250 AND renewing each year for a
$250 annual contribution.
Donors receive a President's Club lapel pin.
Friends of Today - Minimum donation of $500 annually. Donor receives
a signed and
numbered collectors print.
Christian D. Larson Partners - one time $1,000 gift
William H. Harrison Society - A life-to-date giving of $10,000 AND
contribute $1,000 annually
to the Foundation.
Friends of Tomorrow - Recognizes donors who have made a provision for
through their estate plan. A bequest in a will; Naming the Foundation as a
recipient; gifting a life insurance policy; or establishing a charitable
Remember your club may make a $100 contribution to
memorialize or honor of a member of your club or person in your community
and receive a patch for your club banner.
Annual Club Recognition
The OIF Round Banner Patch is presented to Clubs the first time
they donate $5.00 per member. A sponsor Club of "friend" Club may
make the firs $5 per Member gift to be credited to the new Club in
order to begin the Club's Foundation Banner Patch tradition.
Year bars and $10 to $100 or more Banner Tabs are presented to
Clubs when they accumulate one of these dollar amounts per member
within one year ( $10, $15, $20, $25, $30, $35, $40, $50, $60, $70, $80, $90, $100, etc.).
These banner tabs are presented after the close of the Optimist
Districts that achieve $25,000 or more at the end of the Optimist Year
receive an Optimist International Foundation Banner Emblem
reflecting $25,000 achievement, and two banner patches embroidered
with the names of the District Foundation Representative and