The Hutchinson Kiwanis business and membership year ended Sept. 30. We would like to take this opportunity to share some information about Kiwanis; what our mission is, what we have accomplished this past year and what goals and challenges we have for the upcoming year.

We are a service organization affiliated with Kiwanis International. We are part of the MN-DAK division in the United States and the Southwest Division in Minnesota. Currently we have 14 members and we meet the second and fourth Tuesday of each month at the Hutchinson VFW.

We begin with a meal at noon and try to have a program that begins about 12:30 p.m. Our meetings end at 1 p.m.

We sponsor the Hutchinson High School Key Club, which is also a club devoted to service and leadership. The Key Club has over 100 active high school members who perform 10,000-plus hours of service in the Hutchinson community.

Our mission is to financially assist Hutchinson-area youth organizations so they can continue to provide positive experiences and opportunities for the populations they serve. To accomplish this we operate food stands at the local grocery store, the Orange Spectacular and the McLeod County Fair. This past summer the Kiwanis netted approximately $12,000. This was accomplished with help from members, community volunteers, Key Club members, Hutchinson Showstoppers and donations. We are very thankful for the help we received.

An appreciation cookout was Sept. 20 for those who helped us throughout the year. Approximately 35 members and volunteers attended.

One hundred percent of all proceeds are returned to youth organizations who submit requests. We granted requests to 18 organizations this budget year. We also awarded four $1,000 scholarships to Hutchinson High School graduates.

With a membership of 14, we are very dependent upon those community members who step forward and volunteer to help us.

Going forward we will be developing a plan to disperse a gift of $43,000 from the McLeod County Treatment Program. We will continue to attempt to attract new members and volunteer helpers. We will continue to grow our presence on Facebook (Hutchinson Kiwanis).

If you are interested and willing to help at any fundraiser, if you would like to share information about your business, a hobby, or a recent trip, or if you have a request for support for a youth organization you are associated with, please reach out to a member or post on Facebook. We would love to have you for a program.

Lastly, this is an unapologetic request to consider an individual or business membership, a chance to model community service and be a role model for the youth of our community.

— This letter was co-signed by Kiwanis members Dan Hatten, Bill Arndt, Mary Henke, Troy Scotting, Pat Chapman, Bill Snyder and Marshall Bowers.