06.19.2017 Weekly Bulletin

Call to order: Mary Dewey, Vice President at 1:05

Invocation:  Mary Dewey

Pledge: Harold Rowe


Introduction of Guests   


Birthdays and Anniversaries


Mystery Person  – Carl Scott


Greeter   –  Steve Winters chose to talk about a time during the Civil War when a few confederates from Kansas threw six sticks of dynamite oven into Missouri and the Union sympathizers in Missouri returned the insult. The current jibes between Tigers and Jayhawks club members is much more good natured.



  • Sign In and badge or Pay the Pig  Nadia had returned her badge because of her name was misspelled. She got no sympathy for members and paid the pig. How many ways are there to spell Ryakhmyatullov?
  •  Club Social July 13th. Picnic atmosphere, guests to be invited, Charge is $10 per head.  Volunteers needed for set up, refreshments and clean up.
  • City of Columbia Volunteer Appreciation Barbecue – Carl Scott. Members who wish to accompany Carl for this event honoring the Downtown Optimists can do so by contacting Carl at seescottrun@gmail.com/
  • New Member recruitment event – C.O.  Mike Hatchet, Jessica, and Travis – Will be part of the July 13th social.
  • Food Bank – Larry Fick, Jim Murphy, Carl Scott More volunteers are needed more than ever to keep he food flowing to the pantries.
  • Board Met this past Thursday.  Approved a request of $1,600 for Friends of Rock Bridge Park and $1,500 for Junior Achievement.

Treasurer C.O. Scheffer reports finances are strong.  Cash in the bank is down about $7,000 but after accounting for last year’s one time gift from Veterans United of $5,000 we spent on a special project to UCP Heartland, we are only short about $2,000. The budget for grants this year is $43,000 and to date $34,891 has been spent. With Thursday’s grants there remains $5,009 budgeted for grants through Sept 31st. (A subsequent note from the treasurer noted the high school scholarships were inadvertently omitted from the grants doled out this year creating a negative impact of $6,000on the budget.)

  • Summer Fun Fest – Volunteers to man the booth or the club won’t participate.  See Carl Scott for information. If more volunteers are not forthcoming, Carl will have to cancel the continued DOC participation.
  • Volunteer Opportunity for the Food Bank. June 24th at Schnucks.  Contact  Melanie Lake at 573-447-6609 or melaniel@sharefoodbringhope.org

Today’s Speaker


June 19 – Natalie Thornton, Site Director, Phoenix Family, Columbia Square & Claudell Homes

Columbia Square is located at 1715 W. Worley across the road from the Columbia Board of Education Administrative Building and just east of the Joe Machens Ford dealership. It is a privately owned, publicly subsidized housing project for Columbia families living below the poverty level. The medium annual family income is $6,300. The current population of slight over 500 residents consists of mainly single parent and their children. About half the residents living in Columbia Square are children.


Four years ago the Columbia Square owners created a Not-For-Profit organization known as Phoenix Family to provide social services to the residents. Phoenix Family primarily services metropolitan Kansas City but, it has a unit in Iowa and now in Columbia. It’s limited in scope here in Columbia because the budget allows for only two staff people: Natalee Thornton, Service Coordinator and Christi Brieski a reading teacher. Natalee is from Kansas City where Columbia Square offices are located. Christi is retired from Columbia Public Schools where she was a reading specialist and special education teacher.


The two expressed their gratitude for the DOC $1,000 award to underwrite the cost of kids’ meals/snacks so they can concentrate of homework and supervised reading. Currently, there are 30 kids in their reading program. Ms. Brietzke explained some of the successes and obstacles to their learning program. She has a library of mainly donated books which she has organized by reading level. However, instead of labeling each category by grade reading level, she designates each category with an alphabetic letter to avoid the stigma of kids’ reading below their grade level. Volunteers, mainly women, come and read to the kids. Despite kids’ attraction to cute co-ed volunteer readers, Ms. Brietzke expressed both the need and kids’ desire for male companionship. She is actively looking for male volunteers. All volunteers are screened with a background check for program safety.


Resident families are food insecure so families are connected with the food bank, provided with periodic trips to the food pantry and kids participate in the buddy pack program,




June 26 – Kelly Wallis, Director,  Boone County Community Services

July 3 – Meeting with no speaker

July 10 – Junior Achievement

July 17 – Monique White, Pascals Pals

July 24 -Steve Winters, Koeze Nuts

July 31 – TBD

Aug 7 – TBD

Aug 14 – TBD

Aug 21 – TBD

Aug 28 – Steve Winters, Koeze Nuts












Adjourn with the Creed: 1:00

Optimistically Yours,


Sid Sullivan


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