Mission Statement


Helping Optimists Help Kids

Seeking, receiving and managing funds and real personal property for the benefit of Optimist International and its Member Clubs in its charitable, literary and educational activities.

Vision Statement

We envision a Foundation that can provide significant funding for Optimist International’s youth and service programs and is proudly supported by individual Optimists, their Clubs, and the community at large.

Tax and Charitable Status

The Optimist International Foundation is a 501(c)(3) corporation within the meaning of the Internal Revenue Code of the United States. Within 501(c)(3), the Foundation is a 509(a)(3) public charity.


Optimist International Foundation (OIF) was established in 1971 exclusively for the charitable, literary and educational purposes of Optimist International, a community service-based organization committed to creating a more optimistic future for young people through innovative programs. OIF works with Optimist Clubs located in over 2,100 communities in the United States and the Caribbean.

The Foundation has grown steadily since 1971 and is recognized as a not-for-profit 501(c)(3) charitable organization.

The Foundation’s Board of Directors grants funds to Optimist International each year for the development and improvement of International programs. Programs funded by the Foundation serve 1.5 million children annually. Optimist International Foundation depends on the support from Optimist Clubs and individual Members, the general public, businesses and corporations.

Learn More

For more information or to DONATE, click the button below to go to the Optimist International Foundation website.

Optimist International Foundation Footnotes

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What Does the Foundation Do?



Supported the Optimist International Oratorical World Championship Contest by funding the US and International Regional winners and the top three finishers in the finals totaling $70,000.


Paid out $553,112 to Clubs utilizing the Club Campaign program and added an additional $61,361 in interest to the Club Campaign funds.


Supported the development of the 100th Anniversary video, Timeline Booklet, and Special Edition Book.


Assisted Clubs in receiving $300,109 in charitable contributions for their own local programs through the Pass Through program.


Raised $28,000 to launch the Childhood Health and Wellness program through the Centennial Coin campaign.


Sent 113 students off to college with Optimist International oratorical, essay, and CCDHH scholarships totaling $270,000.


Paid out $72,493 on endowments for community projects and scholarships.


Donated $5,000, along with Commemorative Artwork by Jeff Hanson, to the Louisville Ronald McDonald House.


Contributed $51,451 towards the OI Research Fellowship at Johns Hopkins. Plus, an additional $69,754 towards a new research effort around pediatric bone marrow transplants.


Assisted 367 Optimists to help 4,889 children and their families by awarding 20 Club Grants, including 1 grant to a Club in Africa.

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