By Alex Weaver, age 13
The Owen Sound and District Junior Optimist Club is an all-inclusive youth organization; we have 20 members aged 10 to 16 years old. The best part of this club is everyone shows respect towards each other, it’s a comfortable group to share ideas and build confidence. I joined this club last year as I saw them at one of their events and was amazed that a group of young people are helping to make a difference in our community and worldwide, so I wanted to be a part of that.
Since they formed in 2020, the Junior Optimist club has raised over $32,000 towards helping our community and worldwide issues. In December we shopped at a locally owned toy store and bought toys, then delivered to the fire station to support the firefighter toy drive. We also supported the Owen Sound Salvation Army food bank. We raised funds and supported Grey County Cares to assist in the support for local families from Ukraine, we supported our local Veterans at the Owen Sound Royal Canadian Legion, and we also donated to G.R.A.C.E for the Equine Therapy. We raised funds for Amnesty International to help in the fight for women’s rights in Iran. These are just a few organizations we helped in 2022 and in 2023 looks even better.
We have started 2023 with our Random Act of Kindness for our Optimist Day, February 2, 2023. We had postcards made and placed at the Owen Sound Legion, here you could send a postcard to someone serving in our Military or to local seniors in care. Some postcards were of photos that the club members had took.
Now we are moving forward and promoting the next big event for us: The Coldest Night of the Year. This is our club’s second year in a row, and 100 percent of all donations goes directly to Safe ‘N Sound to help the homeless people in our own community. We will be walking on February 25 to raise awareness for Safe ‘N Sound and three or more of our members are taking it one step further and camping outside that night. Last year we surpassed our goal and can’t wait to see how much we can raise this year. If you’re interested in making a donation towards our group, you can find it at https://secure.e2rm.com/registrant/TeamFundraisingPage.aspx?teamID=989680#&panel1-3
If you’re interested in all the things our group does please visit our Facebook, we have exciting plans for 2023.