Kiwanians help in district project

By Russ Morrison

Winchester Kiwanis

Club secretary

Our KY-TN Kiwanis District headquartered in Lexington held the 99th Annual Convention Aug. 11-13 in Louisville at the Marriott East Hotel.

First Lady Linda Chagnon, wife of Kiwanis Governor Leigh Chagnon, had planned a service project for the more than 200 convention attendees to help the teachers at elementary schools have some supplies on hand for their use.

Linda Chagnon, a retired educator, remembers well the number of times that she and fellow teachers purchase class supplies with her own money.

The project actually started a few months back when the governor let the district clubs know what his wife wanted to do to serve our schools teachers and also benefit students.

She started the project with purchasing supplies herself and carrying them to an upstairs room to store until this past weekend.

As word spread of the efforts she was putting into this event, people and clubs began making donations to help her cause. The Chagnons spent over $800 of their own money for supplies and overall more than $5,000 came in from the various donors and clubs.

The plan was to bring the supplies to the convention and the attendees would help bag the supplies. Each club in attendance would take a couple bags back to their local elementary schools.

Linda’s goal was to have 200 bags filled by the end of the supplies availability. After the opening session completed Friday, the attendees would take an empty bag as they were leaving and place a predetermined amount of supplies in the bag from the long line of items that was staged for them.

It wasn’t very long before all the supplies were bagged and counting started to determine the number of bags that each club in attendance would take back with them at the end of the convention.

The KY-TN Key Club International District (high school age students) and the Morristown Kiwanis Club joined in the project by donating bags and backpacks, with the latter all ready filled with the supplies.

The greatest asset in our world is people, and Kiwanis International has more than 600,000 assets in 80 countries working to improve the lives of one child and one community at a time.

Winchester Kiwanis was well represented at the convention with President-Elect Thom Schoolmaster, Margaret Beatty, along with Pat and Russ Morrison attending and participating in the service project.

We were able to pick up a couple extra bags of supplies that exceeded the planned amount, We will be sorting the supplies and determining how and when to deliver them to each elementary school.

The efforts and generosity Kiwanians provide for their communities also extends beyond children through support of similar or needed organizations when funds or time when permit.

The KY-TN Kiwanis District supports hearing aids for small children and $1,000 scholarships for Kiwanis members children and grandchildren that qualify through the application process.

For more information go to www.kiwanisone.com.