Kiwanis donations help Columbia youth programs

By KRISTINA HOUSER

neighborhoods@ColumbiaMissourian.com

The Columbia Kiwanis Club donated over $5,000 in July and August to several local groups focused on supporting youth.

Granny’s House, a children’s organization located in the Douglass Park housing projects, used the funding to help purchase supplies for 37 children who attended a summer camp for urban youth, according to founder and director Pam Ingram.

“We’ve received several donations in past years from the club,” she said.

The Intersection, an after-school program that offers mentoring and tutoring for students, also received money. The initiative focuses on developing relationships and building social skills, according to founder and executive director Dana Battison.

Battison said The Intersection used the donation to buy a new basketball hoop for the children as well as materials to repair building damage and fix up its garden. While The Intersection is primarily supported by donations and volunteering, the funding helped pay wages for some staff.

Another beneficiary of the Kiwanis Club’s annual donation was the Missouri High Steppers, a youth drill team. The group used the gift in a variety of ways, according to founder Rolando Barry, including to help fund a trip to a competition in Illinois this summer, where they placed second.

The Columbia Kiwanis Club also made donations to nine other programs, including the Boys and Girls Club, Douglass sports programs and the Children’s Hospital.

The Kiwanis Club makes donations to local organizations each year, although the recipients and amounts vary. Club members participate in fundraisers throughout the year to raise money to donate to the community.

“Kiwanis is all about kids,” said Jim Rich, the club’s treasurer. “We try to help out kids nationally, internationally, and especially locally.”

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