Frequently Asked Questions

How/Where/When did Kiwanis begin?
The first Kiwanis club was organized in Detroit, Michigan, USA, on January 21, 1915. A year later the Kiwanis Club of Hamilton, Ontario, Canada, was chartered, and Kiwanis International grew rapidly into a leading service club in these two founding nations. In 1962, worldwide expansion was approved, and today Kiwanis clubs are active in every part of the world.

What is the Kiwanis Motto?
"We Build."

What does the name "Kiwanis" mean?
The name "Kiwanis" was coined from an expression in an American Indian language of the Detroit area, Nunc Kee-wanis, which means, "we trade" or "we have a good time."

How many Kiwanis clubs/members are there?
There are more than 8,400 Kiwanis clubs with nearly 280,000 members in 96 nations and geographic areas.

What is a Kiwanian?
An active or retired business and professional man and woman who is member of a Kiwanis club.

Are women allowed to be Kiwanians?
Membership was opened to women in 1987. There are now more than 51,000 women members, and one in seven club presidents is a woman.

What other organizations does Kiwanis sponsor?
Kiwanis International sponsors several service clubs for young people: Circle K International has 12,000 members on 500 university and college campuses; Key Club International has 245,000 members in 4,700 high schools; and Builders Clubs have been organized in 2,000 junior high and middle schools. Other members of the Kiwanis family include K-Kids in elementary schools, young European adults in Kiwanis Junior, and Aktion Club, which involves persons with disabilities in community-service activities.

How much community service is done by Kiwanis clubs around the world?
In one year, Kiwanis clubs sponsored 147,000 service projects. To do so, Kiwanians raised and spent nearly $100 million and contributed 6.2 million hours of volunteer time.

What does Kiwanis do on an international scale to serve the children of the world?
Kiwanis' continuing service emphasis is called "Young Children: Priority One," which focuses on the special needs of children from prenatal development to age five. In one year, projects conducted as part of the "Young Children: Priority One" service emphasis involved $14.3 million and 1.3 million volunteer hours.


In 1994, Kiwanis launched its first Worldwide Service Project, a $75 million campaign in partnership with UNICEF to eliminate iodine deficiency disorders by the year 2000. Iodine deficiency is rare in areas where iodized salt is used, but in other parts of the world, IDD is the leading cause of preventable mental and physical retardation. As many as 1.5 billion people are at risk, especially young children. The initial fundraising goal was surpassed in 2001. IDD projects have now been funded in 95 nations.

Kiwanis Club of Temple City
PO Box 156
Temple City, CA 91780