Why Start an Optimist Club?

Optimists can extend their commitment to young people by starting New Clubs. Through a New Club, they bring together a new group of volunteers who focus on youth development and thereby help improve an entire community. Optimists also benefit from the New Club process, which sharpens leadership skills, increases fellowship and strengthens personal development.

Optimist International understands that people join Optimist Clubs for different reasons, most often for "intangible benefits." People join for the good feeling they receive from helping a young person succeed. Optimist International also recognizes the diversity and time limitations of today's volunteers. Different Optimist Club models are in place throughout the organization, and we're optimistic that one might be a Club concept that fits the goals of potential volunteers in your target community.

    Traditional Club – A traditional Optimist Club conducts a number of exciting, youth-oriented events and promotions each year. The Club meets on a regular basis at a fixed location.

    Sports Club – A Sports Club is built with the primary goal to serve youth through athletics, be it baseball, football, golf, tennis, basketball, soccer or hockey.

    Non-Traditional Club – The Non-Traditional Club is built around a single focus or a single event during the year. This Club has officers and they meet via electronic newsletters and e-mails. Members may not all be located in the same community.
Optimist International encourages Club Members to recruit new Optimists to grow their Clubs – also known as the "member-get-a-member" concept. But the organization takes this idea a step further, encouraging local Clubs to sponsor New Clubs as a supplement to their general membership recruitment efforts.

Do you want to bring out the best in kids by starting a New Club? Follow the step-by-step process to learn what is involved.

Resource Materials
Do you have what you need to start a Club?

Rules for New Clubs

Certified Club Builders
Need a Certified Club Builder in your area?

Contact the New Club Department
Do you want to start a New Club?