IN 1988, KIWANIS INTERNATIONAL GRANTED THE KIWANIS CLUB OF ORLEANS ITS CHARTER. SINCE THEN OUR ONCE SMALL CLUB HAS ACHIEVED SOME PRETTY IMPRESSIVE ACHIEVEMENTS.
Learning that many Orleans school age children are in need of basic school supplies, long time member suggested we do something about it. Approaching Staples Canada the Club established a program that connected over 130 Canadian Kiwanis Clubs and their local Staples stores to collect over $2.5 million worth of binders, pens, markers, etc., and all for use in each Club's local school system.
Having been approached by the Children's Aid Foundation for guidance with establishing a new fundraiser, the Club agreed to take its successful community based trivia night and helped build it into "World Trivia Night", North America's largest indoor trivia championship featuring over $10,000 in event prizes and the Foundation's biggest annual generator for badly needed funds.
The Club then set out to build a playground. Amassing over $325,000, the Club, in partnership with the City of Ottawa found a great location and Henderson Recreation Equipment. Asking local school children to suggest design elements, the playground was envisioned to reflect the City of Ottawa's roots and included a ship that would have once sailed the Ottawa River and a climbing tower, reminiscent of the Parliament Buildings. In May of 2005 the Club held Opening Ceremonies for Ottawa's biggest play structure. In 2007 they returned, in conjunction with Dynamo Industries Inc. to add a major merry-go-round netted element. The Club continues to check the playground every April and clean it up for the upcoming summer season.
While the aforementioned projects are admirable, perhaps an even greater accomplishment was the creation and growth of the Club's haunted attraction "sKreamers". For over 10 years the program has trained and nurtured over 1,500 student volunteers in how to be creepy, how to get their community support hours to graduate, to develop self confidence, to work with the public and how to help fundraise over a quarter of a million dollars that is specifically targeted for the Orleans and Ottawa community. With over 60,000 visitors, sKreamers is one of Canada's top haunts and was featured in the Kiwanis international magazine across North American.
...and the Kiwanis Club of Orleans continues to make its community proud.