Kiwanis Club of the Greenbrier Valley focused on serving children’s needs

By Stephen Baldwin, RealWV

In a time when civic organizations are in decline, there’s a new service organization in the Greenbrier Valley focused on making a positive impact with children. 

Kiwanis Club of the Greenbrier Valley is a local chapter of the international Kiwanis Club. Kiwanis began in 1919 in Detroit, and now operates in more than 80 countries across the globe. 

According to Club President Nicole Ramsey, who works as Director of Community Education at the Family Refuge Center, “Members of our local club come from all walks of life.” Retirees, business owners, educators, corporate employees, and nonprofit workers all belong to the new club. 

Ramsey believes civic groups play an important role in modern society. 

“During this day and age, we know that civic and service organizations are slowly seeing a decline,” she reflects. “As someone who grew up in 4-H and saw the good that these organizations can do, I hope we can get back to a service-orientated place.”

“Without the work of these organizations–whether it be Kiwanis club, 4-H, Ruritans, you name it!–there would be a great lag in what can be provided to the community,” she says. “They create community cohesion and solidarity by bringing people together who share common interests, goals, or concerns.”

Specifically, Ramsey says these civic groups are relied upon by citizens to provide essential services, “particularly in areas where government resources may be lacking.”

Kiwanis Club of the Greenbrier Valley meets on the 2nd and 4th Tuesday of each month at Shoney’s in Lewisburg. “We start with fellowship and food at 5:30pm and then our regular meeting starts at 6:00pm,” Massey says. “We typically try to have some type of guest speaker come to tell us about themselves and any service oriented projects they may have happening in our area.”

The real heart of the club is service, centered on children. 

After only operating for seven months, they’ve already conducted a clothing and toy drive for children via the Greenbrier County Family Support Center, passed out to all Greenbrier County school employees in February as a thank-you for all the work they do with youth in our area, and handed out Easter baskets to families at the Ronceverte Food Bank. 

“Currently we are working on several more projects including a membership drive, a book drive, and several others,” Ramsey reports. 

“I challenge everyone to find a group, or organization, or club and become active,” Ramsey says. “The more we help our communities to grow and prosper, the better we all are for it!”

For more information, visit Kiwanis Club of the Greenbrier Valley on Facebook.

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