The Essay Contest is sponsored by Optimist International to give young people the opportunity to write about their own opinions regarding the world in which they live. The approach can encompass a young person’s personal experience, the experience of their country or a more historical perspective. In additional to developing skills for written expression, participants also have the opportunity to win a college scholarship!
Since its start in 1928, the Optimist Oratorical contest has become the longest-running program sponsored by Optimist International. The contest is designed for youth to gain experience in public speaking and provide them with the opportunity to compete for a college scholarship.
Camp Happy Sands
Camp Happy Sands is a non-profit organization whose mission is to provide a cost-free, week-long day camp and learning experience for children of lower income families in a faith based environment. They work with local churches and other groups to select about 40 to 50 K-5th grade kids per week for six weeks each summer. Each group enjoys a week of day trips to the Gulf Islands National Seashore on Perdido Key where they swim, fish, play games and enjoy the beach. In addition to providing volunteer support, our club has contributed financial support to Camp Happy Sands for over 30 years.
BSA Troop 409
Troop 409 was first chartered by our club on June 1, 1981 to accommodate “special needs” boys with a variety of physical, intellectual and emotional disabilities. The troop consists of between 15 and 20 scouts ranging in age from late teens to early 60’s. Much like any regular troop, 409 Scouts engage in weekend campouts, summer camps, day hikes and hands-on crafts and work toward Merit badges and Rank advancements. Because of their disabilities, Troop 409 Scouts are not able to participate in the same fund raising activities as other Scouts. As a result, our club has since their inception provided an annual contribution to help with camping, and outing costs.
Immigration and Naturalization
The United States District Court for the Northern District of Florida is honored to take part in the process of Naturalization, and has retained exclusive jurisdiction to conduct naturalization ceremonies for applicants seeking citizenship. These ceremonies are presided over by a United States District Judge or Magistrate Judge. NPOC promotes this opportunity by participating in the ceremony and provides each applicant with a copy of the BILL OF RIGHTS.
Take Stock in Children (TSIC)
A nonprofit organization founded in 1995, TSIC aims to provide mentors and college scholarships to lowincome students in Florida. The organization helps students graduate and successfully enter a career. Since its inception, over 24,000 children have been enrolled in the Take Stock in Children program, which is active in over 800 Florida schools. NPOC provides one half of one scholarship annually. Contributions are matched dollar-for-dollar by the Florida Prepaid College Foundation. “Our” students range from a new 7th grader each year to college seniors (and now college graduates). View "Our" Students.
Optimist International Foundation
The OI Foundation (OIF) combines the efforts of Optimist Clubs throughout the world to support the abilities of Optimists everywhere to be friends of youth. In 2019, the OIF maintained strong support of the OI Oratorical, Essay, and Communication Contest for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing (CCDHH). The Foundation provided numerous grants to individual clubs through the Club Grant and Disaster Relief programs. OIF also launched the OI Childhood Health and Wellness program. NPOC annually donates at least $10.00 per member to OIF.
Bill Bond Baseball
The NPOC has sponsored youth baseball and softball in the Brent area and in Pensacola City Recreation Leagues since the club’s inception in 1962. We launched and financially supported an entire league for 13 and 14 year-old players in 1979. The four to five team North Pensacola Optimist League produced a number of players who were awarded college scholarships … and some who even advanced to professional baseball! After twenty-nine years in operation, with several State Championships in the books, our NPOC league was absorbed by Bill Bond Baseball in 2008. We continue to sponsor a NPOC 13&14 year-old team.
West Florida HS of Technology
The majority of the funds we raise each year comes from our annual Christmas tree sales at the Hitzman Optimist Park. We could not operate our tree lot without the wonderful assistance of the WFHST Jaguar football and softball teams. The able-bodied football players unload an 18-wheeler full of beautiful Fraser firs on the morning after Thanksgiving each year. The players volunteer many hours during the time our lot is open — hauling trees, carrying them to cars and trucks, tying them securely. The softball team takes the evergreen pieces trimmed from the trees and turns them into absolutely splendid wreaths that add holiday cheer to homes throughout the area. It is a terrific partnership. The students get the opportunity to volunteer with a program that directly supports their community. Club members get the opportunity to enjoy hanging out with and talking to smart, hard-working young people.
Booker T. Washington HS Band
The excellent band at Booker T. Washington High School gives musically-inclined students the opportunity to enjoy playing instruments while learning discipline and teamwork. The NPOC’s annual donation supports uniforms, school-owned instruments, and band travel costs. Each year, one of the band’s small groups entertains customers at our Christmas tree lot Club.
Water & Youth Safety Pensacola
Twice each year the Pensacola Association of Realtors serves our community by educating 2nd graders on water safety. After classroom sessions, a field trip to a local swimming pool or to the UWF natatorium familiarizes these kids with the enjoyment (and the dangers) of the many water recreational opportunities available in Pensacola. Taking advantage of Optimist International insurance coverage, Water and Youth Safety Pensacola is able to expand the program to serve more schools.
Pine Forest HS Culinary Arts
The Pensacola area boasts one of the top tourist destinations in the United States. Naturally, the hospitality industry is an important contributor to the Like us on Facebook—facebook.com/NPOC63 local economy. The Culinary Arts program at Pine Forest High School gives students a chance to get a head start in careers associated with the dining industry.
Gull Point Performing Dancers
This dance troupe provides opportunities for accomplished dancers to grow and show their talents. Located at the City of Pensacola's Gull Point Resource Center, the NPOC has supported the Gull Point Performing Dancers since the early 80's. Club President Dan Dillan's wife Terry, was the original dance instructor. The original level of support was the purchase of a large portable mirror so the dancers could see themselves in practice.
Optimist Youth Golf
The Optimist International Junior Golf Championships is one of the premier tournaments in the junior golf world. In partnership with the First Tee of Northwest Florida, the NPOC hosts a local tournament each spring for boys and girls ages 10 to 18. Winners in each age group advance to the Optimist Florida District Tournament, where they can then qualify for “The Optimist” Junior World Tournament in July. Some of the top golfers in the world competed in The Optimist Club.
Escambia Westgate School
The mission of Escambia Westgate School is to provide individualized programs of educational excellence in a safe learning environment, while exposing students to various modern technologies and effective instructional techniques. Westgate promotes continuous parent and community involvement in school functions and decisions. Escambia Westgate is committed to encouraging the development of practical living skills, positive self-esteem and interpersonal relationships to prepare students for the challenges of the future. NPOC support of over 30 years provided for the annual Christmas Party for students and staff.
Lipscomb ES Singers
Lipscomb Elementary School is blessed to have a choral program that not only teaches students to sing, but also encourages them to keep their grades up and have excellent conduct. Being in the Lipscomb Singers is a goal for many students at the school. The NPOC contribution buys matching shirts for the singers to wear at their performances. Like, the Gull Point dancers, the Lipscomb Singers entertain the Escambia Westgate students at their annual Christmas party.