102nd CONVENTION
July 13–16, 2017
Paris 2017

News

  • Two Americans in Paris


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    Visiting Paris for the first time this July? See the 102nd Annual Kiwanis International Convention host city through the eyes of another first-timer.

    Indianapolis fashion and lifestyle blogger Sarah Moreland Byrne documents her experiences in Europe, including a week in the City of Light, during her honeymoon in October 2016. Travel virtually to Paris through anecdotes, travel tips and recommendations for places to eat and visit.

    Sarah’s no stranger to Kiwanis: Her Kiwanis-family journey began in 2002 when she joined the Lawrence North High School Key Club in Indianapolis, then continued throughout her college days as a member of the Circle K International club at Ball State University in Muncie, Indiana. She now serves as Kiwanis International’s digital media specialist.

    Peek into her Parisian adventure, then start planning your own. Register for the Kiwanis International convention online by May 15.


  • Brief overview of the France-Monaco District


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    In 2015–2016, the Kiwanis France-Monaco District raised €2,314,320 and pledged more than 148,963 hours of volunteer service to help children.

    Number of Kiwanians: 4,400
    Number of clubs: 250
    Proportion of men and women: 76% men, 24% women
    Average age: 59 years old
    Occupations: Kiwanians from the France-Monaco District have diverse occupations. However, the highest percentages of Kiwanians work in the fields of insurance, medicine and education, as well as in the commercial sector.

    Development of the district: A development manager in each of the 32 divisions supports a structured team with task officers. The goal is increased female participation, younger members and partnership with the JCE. This year, their work is getting results: 7 or 8 new club charters and growth of more than 100 members since October 2016.
    Communication: Development of the use of social media in clubs and creation of a new and very functional website: kiwanis.fr
     
    Key initiatives:

    National initiative: Rare diseases
    The district’s goal is to raise funds that support research and help families. By definition, a rare disease affects fewer than one person in 2,000. But there are at least 7,000 rare diseases, mostly genetic in origin, and the overall number of people suffering from these diseases is increasing: 3 million people in France alone, half of whom are children. In fact, these diseases account for 30% of infant mortality. In addition to their suffering, these children face many difficulties—including diagnosis, absence of treatment (treatment is only available for 200 rare diseases) and problems related to patient management by the appropriate health services.
     
    The France-Monaco District of Kiwanis supports two types of initiatives: 1) aid to the Rare Diseases Foundation and research into diagnosis, and 2) aid to sick children. A Rare Diseases Week was organized in February 2017, so that clubs could help fund these two types of initiatives.

    Margot’s story
    At 6 years old, Margot suffered from spastic diplegia, an affliction of the lower limb muscles. Since birth, she had been unable to walk and used a wheelchair. There is no treatment, so Margot's only hope was a selective dorsal rhizotomy, a surgical operation that consisted of cutting nerve extensions at the spinal cord. In order to see their daughter walk one day, Margot's parents contacted Professor Park of the Saint Louis Children's Hospital (USA), a world leader in selective dorsal rhizotomy. But the cost of the operation and Margot’s rehabilitation was very high: 70,000 euros. The parents decided to seek the assistance of Kiwanis, which raised nearly 50,000 euros within a few months. Margot had her operation in December 2016.  She can now walk, with the help of a walker—and she’s getting stronger and healthier all the time.

    The Kiwanis Youth Tour de France
    Thanks to this 20-stop tour, young people from underprivileged backgrounds can pursue sports and enjoy a social adventure—all while discovering France. At each city, a local Kiwanis club welcomes the youngsters, offering them a meal and taking them to visit a site, monument or business. The Youth Tour de France take place in July, like a miniature version of the cycling Tour de France—sometimes even using a small part of its stages.
     
    First Flights
    First Flights offers children with disabilities and disadvantages the opportunity to fly in a plane and see the world from a different angle. The program was started in 2000, and more than 80 clubs and airfields in the country now participate—as do generous volunteer pilots. As a result, the program has provided more than 40,000 first flights in the last 15 years.

    Greens of Hope
    For the past seven years, Kiwanis has been an official partner of Greens of Hope, an event that organizes golf tournaments with the Overcoming Cystic Fibrosis Association. In 2014–2015, €121,401 was raised for this association. Each year, Kiwanis organizes an average of 29 competitions in 20 cities.

    Literature Prize
    The Literature Prize awarded by Kiwanis France-Monaco aims to promote Francophone literature through the recognition and discovery of new authors.

    Partnership with Romania:
    Since 2000, the France-Monaco District has helped to develop Kiwanis’ presence in Romania. With 24 current clubs and five clubs soon to be chartered, Romania will become a district-in-training (which requires at least 500 members and 25 clubs). The needs of Romanian children are great, and the cooperation between Franco-Romanian clubs has been exemplary—showing how effective collaboration can be.
     
    Go to the district site to find out more.


  • A memorable gala evening


    The Love Beatles

    SOLD OUT On July 14, Paris celebrates Bastille Day. That evening, the Kiwanis International-European Federation is hosting a gala evening at the hotel Le Méridien Etoile, and all Kiwanis convention attendees are invited!
     
    Europeans will purchase tickets as part of their KI-EF convention registration process.
    For non-Europeans, a link to a personalized ticket-booking page will be included in the registration-confirmation email for the Kiwanis International convention. (See item 7.)  We advise non-Europeans to contact their banking institution of the upcoming charge prior to booking the tickets in order to minimize the chance of payments being denied due to a foreign transaction.
     
    The ticket price is 63 euros. Admission includes the choice of a vegetarian or non-vegetarian meal, live music for the entire evening, two dance floors and the promise of new international friendships!
     
    Get dressed up and be ready to dance!

    Our featured musicians will be:
    • The Love Beatles, a Beatles tribute band
    • Jan Parent and his back up singers, various dance and dinner music and songs from around the world

    The bands will perform in two different rooms: Mac Mahon Hall Neuilly and Wagram. You will be free to circulate between the two rooms. However, you are asked not to change tables during the evening. (Tables will be first-come, first-pick.)
     
    A cash bar will be available.
    Dress code is black tie/dark suit for men, cocktail dresses for women.
     
    Cancellation policy:
    40% of the ticket (26 euros) will be charged in case of a cancellation through June 30.
    No refunds after June 30.
    Email europeinfo@Kiwanis.org for cancellations.


  • Unforgettable memories


    Wahib montagnes for site

    PARIS is a huge metropolitan city with more than 12.6 million residents. It has a recorded history dating back to 300 BC, just before the Romans invaded.

    You should not miss this unique opportunity to visit the city. It boasts many World Heritage monuments that one needs to see: The Eiffel tower, The Cathedral of Notre Dame, The Louvre Museum, The Castle of Versailles, and many others. Also, bear in mind that the front door of the USA is the Statue of Liberty, gifted to America by the French people in 1886, in celebration of the United States’ 100 years of independence.

    I was born in Egypt, which is an icon in humankind history. I do not think that there is another city in the world that can compete with the beauty and variety of the historical buildings of Paris and its imperial town planning, not to forget French cuisine, French wines, French painters and, last but not least the French cancan which made its debut in Paris cabarets!

    I implore you to take advantage of the hospitality offered to you by the local Kiwanians and the French people. In a very short time you will charmed by their culture, their food and all that Paris has to offer.

    The Paris convention and the French culture will leave you with so many unforgettable memories. You should not hesitate for a moment to look into what is offered, and to register for the experience of a lifetime.

    Wahib Aladin

    Kiwanis International life member, Kiwanis Club of Sion Valais,Switzerland

    Photo credit: Photography by Wahib's club mate, Yves Oberlé.



  • Be there or be square


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    Throughout my time in our great organization, I have been asked “how did you become so involved In Kiwanis and what drove you towards it?” I can honestly say that it was because I had the opportunity to attend my first Kiwanis International convention in Detroit, in 1970 – three years after joining – and I was bitten by the Kiwanis “bug”.

    I was able to observe the impact that it had around the world through displays, speakers and while talking to other members. And I was impressed with the fact that the delegates actually participated in the business of the organization, by discussing and voting on KI bylaws amendment proposals and participating in officer elections.

    Beginning back in 1919 when Kiwanis bought its “freedom” from Allen Browne in Birmingham, the convention has been the showplace of the Kiwanis world. To go to a convention and see the broad display of service and fundraising projects, a member can only return home with many new ideas for the club. 

    The convention has also been the vehicle used to present prestigious awards such as the World Service Medal to Mother Teresa, Audrey Hepburn, Roger Moore, Nancy Reagan, Rosalynn Carter, Heifer Project International and Sleeping Children around the World. Also, the prestigious Robert Connelly Award for Heroism is presented to an individual who has gone above and beyond the call of duty. Most of these recipients have addressed the convention in conjunction with the presentation, but the Kiwanis stage has also seen the likes of President Reagan, Dean Rusk, Richard Lugar, Bishop Fulton Sheen, Norman Vincent Peale and numerous others.

    Four Kiwanis International conventions have been held outside of North America: Vienna, Austria in 1983, celebrating the 20th anniversary of Kiwanis in Europe; Nice, France in 1993 which I had the privilege of presiding over as your Kiwanis International president; Taipei, Taiwan in 2001; and Chiba, Japan in 2014. And now in 2017, we will be traveling to Paris, France for the 102nd convention.

    Finally, one of the biggest reasons to attend a Kiwanis International convention is to meet with fellow Kiwanians from around the world and be amazed by how much we have in common and to bring back to your club the excitement that only attending such an event can create.  Enrich your lives and improve your clubs.

    See you in Paris in July. And as we said in my day: Be there or be square.

    Bill Lieber, past Kiwanis International president