Altrusa International of Yaquina Bay is coming up on three decades of service in Lincoln County. With a mission that focuses on improving the lives of women and children, Altrusa’s programs and fundraisers to address readiness to learn, self-esteem, literacy, dental health, scholarships and supporting community service organizations in a variety of ways.
In 2012, Altrusa will celebrate it’s 30th anniversary with a “30-30” fundraising theme. Past Altrusa members, supportive citizens in our community, and businesses are encouraged to make contributions to Altrusa along the lines of “thirty dollars for thirty years.” “ We know there are many people out there who support the work Altrusa does and we thought the 30-30 theme was fun and affordable,” states club president, Tami Atkinson. “And of course, other multiples of 30 like $300 are welcome too,” she adds with a smile.
Some of Altrusa’s successful programs are:
Project School Bell- Working together with Lincoln County schools, this program aims to improve the self-esteem and readiness-to-learn of children, K-12 and to provide practical items that they might not be able to afford. School staff identify needs and through Altrusa’s garage sale and Seafood and Wine sales, Altrusa raises funds to purchase clothing, shoes, personal hygiene products, and offers funds for prescription medications.
Something to Smile About- Altrusa’s dental program focuses on prevention, education, and urgent care for dental emergencies. With grant support from the Siletz Tribal Charitable Contributions Fund and Samaritan Pacific Health Services, as well as civic groups and local businesses, Altrusa distributes dental kits, sends educators into the classrooms, sponsors dental van visits and helps individual women and children with emergency dental care.
Literacy Program- Mini-grants are awarded to area teachers to expand their classroom libraries. Fundraising includes selling books, hand-painted Christmas ornaments and candy bars.
Scholarships- For over 20 years, Altrusa has awarded scholarships to Lincoln County women who are returning to schools. Altrusa’s Trivia Bee is the fundraising ‘vehicle’ for this program and Oregon Coast Community College Foundations administers the scholarship application and award process. Each year, 3-4 scholarships are awarded/
Community Service Grants- Service grants are given to a variety of community organizations for specific projects. This year, recipients were: CSC Head Start, Waldport Community Learning Center, Lincoln County Children’s Advocacy Center, My Sister’s Place and Samaritan House.
Programs such as these will benefit from Altrusa’s “30-30” campaign. Altrusa wants to publicly thank all past, present and charter members for their years of community service. With their help, the club has matured into a respected and strong community organization.The club members are interesting and fun people who care about the community and want to support it in meaningful ways.
Monthly meetings are held at noon on the 3rd Wednesday of each month at the Agate Beach Best Western and the public is invited. For more club information, visit: www.altrusa.com and click on ‘locate a club’ and go to District 12. Locally, call club president Tami Atkinson at 541-270-4190. To make a tax-deductible donation, send checks to Altrusa of Yaquina Bay, PO Box 314, Newport, OR 97365.