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Founding of Club

Kiwanis history

 
First Kiwanis International board
The first clubs were organized to promote the exchange of business among the members. However the members were distributing Christmas baskets to the poor. A lively debate ensued between those who supported community service as the Kiwanis mission and those who supported the exchange of business. By 1919, the service advocates won the debate.
  • Kiwanis was founded in Detroit, Michigan, on January 21, 1915.
  • In the early years, Kiwanis clubs focused on business networking, but even then, members were serving the needs of the poor.
  • By 1919, the organization had changed its focus from business to service.
  • Kiwanis became an international organization in 1916 with the organization of the Kiwanis Club of Hamilton, Ontario.
  • Kiwanis limited its membership to the United States and Canada until 1962 when worldwide expansion was approved.
  • Until 1987, Kiwanis was a male-only organization. But after years of debate and growing support, women’s membership was received overwhelmingly.

Kiwanis Club of LaPorte was founded on February 8, 1921 by 52 dedicated and energized LaPorte business men .  Over the years, the club has supported the community through many fundraisers, including pancake breakfasts, Peanut Days, Mother's Day Flower Sale, among other events. We help out in the local community in a variety of ways, including sponsoring youth groups, elementary school reading programs, raising money to benefit children and children's support groups, and providing scholarships. The club has enjoyed a rich history over the years, with its members coming from fields like accounting, civil service, education, management, and many more. For more information about us, check out our News page and our Calendar of Events.