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Club moves forward

Next meeting set for Sept. 3

POSTED: August 19, 2009 4:00 a.m.

An information-gathering meeting last Thursday brought together almost two dozen volunteers interested in forming an Optimist Club in Dawson County.


As the world’s fourth largest civic service organization, Optimist Clubs offer scholarships, conduct mentoring and after-school programs, participate in childhood cancer initiatives and also hold sports activities with a goal of “Bringing out the Best in Kids.”


“There is a great need in Dawson County,” said Jim Bailey, a member of the Jasper Optimist Club, who has helped organize the local expansion effort.


Each club is autonomous with volunteers deciding how to serve the needs of the children in their community.


“There are things within the county that need to be done that the county government can not take care of,” Bailey said, encouraging parents to step up and become more involved in all aspects of their children’s lives.


Last week’s meeting focused on what Optimist International is, how a club operates and identifying community needs.


“One of the challenges that was brought up is that we need to get more people who are not already involved,” Bailey said. “There are a lot of activities going on, and we’re looking for young parents, middle age and retirees to become active.”


The next meeting will be held at 7 p.m. Sept. 3 at the Appalachian Community Bank Conference Center to form committees and nominate officers. Anyone interested in getting involved or learning more is invited to attend.


For more information, call (706) 268-1725.


E-mail Michele Hester at



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