WASHINGTON, D.C. (April 29, 2015) – The Kiwanis Club of Santa Fe will be One of 34 clubs at the White House this week as Kiwanis International participates in a Community Leader Briefing to discuss the issues impacting communities. The Community Leader Briefing is a unique opportunity for grassroots leaders to come to Washington and further the conversation between White House officials and those in the community.
The Kiwanis Club of Santa Fe was selected to participate because the club has been effective at improving communities through a signature service project. The Kiwanis Club of Santa Fe’s signature service project is The Burning of Will Shuster’s Zozobra aka Old Man Gloom, Santa Fe’s most famous grumpy guy.
Club members attending the Community Leader Briefing are: James A. Phelps, Club President and Raymond G. Sandoval, Chair of the Zozobra Committee.
“This is a great opportunity for our Santa Fe Kiwanis Club to share the story of our work with the unique and cultural experience of The Burning of Zozobra, and demonstrate how we have made a difference in our community, and help inspire other clubs and individuals to do the same,” said James A. Phelps, 2014-2015 Club President.
Each of the more than 16,000 Kiwanis family clubs assesses the needs of its community and finds the best way to make a difference. Some of the projects include reading to children, organizing the local sports league and making pediatric patients’ hospital stays better.
For 100 years, the members of Kiwanis International have devoted themselves to creating a better world for children,” said Kiwanis International President Dr. John R. Button. “Kiwanis clubs remain vibrant and viable today, providing service that helps children develop into strong, healthy adults. Our communities’ needs demonstrate that Kiwanis is as important today as it was when the first Kiwanis club started its service.”
Founded in Detroit, Mich., in January of 1915, Kiwanis began as a businessman’s networking club. The organization quickly adopted community service as a goal, with children as the beneficiary. That first Kiwanis club, still active today, evolved into a global service organization with nearly 630,000 adult and youth members in 16,000-plus clubs in more than 80 nations. Kiwanis club members donate more than 18 million hours of service every year to strengthen their communities.