LETTER: What is Kiwanis and what do they do?

As a member of Kiwanis for the last three years, it has been very surprising to me how many people in our community don’t know what KIWANIS is.  Some have heard the name but don’t really know what it is or what we do.


Very simply put, Kiwanis is a service organization that raises money to help children in need in our community and in the world.  We are part of Kiwanis International which was started in 1915 and now has 7,800 clubs in 80 countries. The motto for Kiwanis is “Serving the Children of the World”.  Each club does that in their own unique way.  Kiwanis, the same as other service organizations, has a variety of committees that members can become involved in if they desire.  That is not a prerequisite to becoming a member, however, and members can be as involved or uninvolved as they choose to be. 

Kiwanis is a non-profit, totally all-volunteer organization that is divided into two distinct entities; the 501 © (4) Kiwanis Club of Kirkland and the 501 © (3) Kirkland Kiwanis Foundation, which allows for fully tax-deductible grants and donations.  Officers and board members serve on both entities. 

The Kiwanis Club of Kirkland which was started in 1947, has about 95 members and is quickly growing.  We have members of all ages, both men and woman.  We are a very active club and have a lot of high energy members that know how to “get it done”.  We also have a lot of fun!  There are always social events going on with the club, such as our book club, dinner parties, going to concerts or sports events. It is a way to make new friends and have a fun group of people to hang out with!

Listed below are a number of local children’s organizations our club supports or sponsors by donating money, time and energy.

SUPPORTED OR SPONSORED BY Kiwanis Club of Kirkland/Kirkland Kiwanis Foundation

Kiwanis Branded Service Leadership Programs

                  International Community School Key Club

                  Juanita High School Key Club

                  Lake Washington High School Key Club

                  Kirkland Middle School Builders Club

Kiwanis Annual Easter Egg Hunt

Cub Scout Pack at Peter Kirk Elementary

Eastside Baby Corner for Kiwanis Young Children Priority One

Boys and Girls Club

Attain Housing (formerly KITH)

                  Annual 7 Hills of Kirkland Pancake Breakfast fundraiser

                  Quarterly Community Suppers

Community Church Club Scout Pack

Providing lunches for selected Special Olympic Events

Kirkland Summer Concerts

Kiwanis Key Club Leadership Conventions for high school Key Club members

Kiwanis Camp Casey Summer Camp for Severely Disabled Children 

Five Lake Washington School District School Robotics Programs

First Tee Leadership Program, Kirkland Middle School

Oso Mudslide Victims, Oso Fire Department

Queen….It’s A New Day

YMCA – KTUB monthly meal



High School Graduate academic Scholarships for greater Kirkland students

Lake Washington School High School Robotics World Competition

YMCA – Youth Institute Program Scholarships at KTUB

Kiwanis International Foundation & UNICEF ELIMINATE project

Pacific Northwest Kiwanis Foundation – Kiwanis Children’s Cancer Program

Burned Children Recovery Foundation campership

Kiwanis International Foundation Grants

Teen CEO Competition Winner Awards.



Jack Keller Memorial Fund – for youth in need orthodontic care

Bill Petter Scholarship Fund – for higher education automotive studies

Teen CEO, LWSD – for high school business competition



Selling fresh Noble Fir Christmas Trees & Wreaths with accessories

Selling Heidi Ho canned Gourmet Mixed Nuts and Delicious Delights

Selling See’s Candy

Hosting (Attain Housing) Annual 7 Hills of Kirkland Pancake Breakfast

Private Donations

Family Gifts

Foundation Grants

Key Club ELIMNATE 7 UNICEF Halloween Drive

Auto Salvage Value Contributions

Amazon Smile

The Kiwanis club of Kirkland’s biggest fundraiser each year is our Christmas Tree lot located in Juanita Beach Park.  We begin selling beautiful, fresh Noble Fir trees, tree stands, fresh wreaths, See’s candies and Gourmet nuts the day after Thanksgiving.  The tree lot is open 7 days a week.  From monies made from the tree lot, our generous donors to the Foundation and other fundraisers we participated in, KCK was able to give back to the children and families in need in Kirkland over $63,000 last year.  In part, this is due to a lot of hard work and long hours at the tree lot, but when we see what we are able to do and who we have helped in our community, we all know it was all worth it!  That is who we are and what we stand for and we are all very proud to be members of this wonderful, devoted club.

If you would like more information about our club, please visit our website at http://kirkland.kiwanis.org  or call our club secretary, Matt Gregory at (425) 828-0231.  We meet every Wednesday at 11:30a at Hectors in downtown Kirkland. Let us know if you would like to stop in and see what we are about. We’ll be happy buy you lunch!

Bonni Sundberg