By Jessica Dang | Jet Division, Fountain Valley High School General Member| February 14, 2014 -
This was one of the most wonderful days I got to spend with KIWIN’S. What is KIWIN’S? Well KIWIN’S is a club that dedicates it self into helping the community and people in them. We may not be as big as other Key Club Districts but we are proud of what we are. I AM PROUD of being a KIWIN’S member. From my experience, KIWIN’S is a place that symbolizes a big family. KIWIN’S members treat each other like brother and sister and we always feel like we belong together. On February 8th, I attended the Candidates’ Forum hosted by these and other amazing people of the District Board. They took so much of their own time to create these wonderful workshops that have helped me and others on our journey of being a member to board members. I would like to thanks each and everyone of them personally with my deepest gratitude. Thank you for making me, a KIWIN’S member, proud and always happy to be a part of KIWIN'S.
By Jessica Tran | Jet Division, La Quinta High School Vice President| February 10, 2014 -
Hello my fellow KIWINNERS. My name is Jessica Tran and I am the Vice President of La Quinta KIWIN’S! To be honest, I am at a loss for words just sitting here, thinking about what to write for this article. Because this is my fourth year in KIWIN’S and third year as a board member, I have collected so many memories. I couldn’t choose just one! And then I realized… I am currently a Senior at La Quinta High School and I only had about a couple months left of my last term. It’s pretty surreal to wrap around the fact that this will be my last term with some of the greatest people you will ever meet in your life. I’ve put so much time, energy, efforts, and spirit into this club and I can’t think of my life without KIWIN’S. People have asked me, “What does it feel like being a four year member and three year board member?” Simple. KIWIN’S makes me happy. All of the weekly projects, general meetings, district events, spirit battles… I’ve built up a love for KIWIN’S and it eventually became a part of me. KIWIN’S made me who I am today and I do not regret any moments whatsoever because these are the people who are willing to help out the community with me. These are the people who helped create fond memories that I will never forget – people I can proudly say are a part of my second family. KIWIN’S is a great part of my life.
By Paul Pham | Jet Division, Segerstrom Fundamental High School President | August 19, 2013 -Segerstrom KIWIN'S Board poses for their photo | Credits to Vinhson Nguyen http://www.flickr.com/photos/78953691@N04/
When meeting new people, the first impression is the single most important push that could lead someone into believing you or doubting you. Hello KIWINNERS! Paul Pham from Segerstrom KIWIN'S, and I'm here to talk about our latest social that included a photoshoot to help impress members when they first meet us to promote KIWIN'S. The day started off with 4 of my other board members meeting up at my home to hitch a ride to Diamond Jamboree to start our day. The first 5 of us ate together for breakfast and sported our new KIWIN'S Cardigans and made sure everyone saw how polite and courteous we are. After breakfast, our Secretary came and we began having a small board meeting, discussing big plans and events for the new members to get excited for the next month! We discussed the DCON theme (Thank you District Board for deciding on an amazing theme!) and we have already planned some things ahead of time to prepare for DCON!
After we finished our short meeting, we made our way to our photoshoot spot, North Lake! Here is wear the struggle began. Half of our board wanted to walk there (which was 2 miles...) and the rest of us wanted to bus...you know what this means. BOARD COMPETITION! GOAL: to get to North Lank before the other team does! I was in the Bus Team and we actually waited a long time before the bus actually showed up...While we were waiting, I was serenading my Treasurer, Dennis Vo, by singing "Treasure" by Bruno Mars...but I gave it my own twist. On the bus ride towards North Lake, we passed by the walking team and we ended up...VICTORIOUS. After we all finally met up at North Lake, we had our Professional Photographer, Vinhson Nguyen, take our photos to prepare to WOW the new KIWIN'S for this year.
After the photoshoot, the board and I went to go grab lunch and my Historian/Webmaster decided to film me at my prime, showing my spirit through my amazing singing. Throughout the whole day, she was recording highlights with me being goofy.. With these impressive looks and cooperative board, making a great first impression on anyone will be a cinch!
By Manuel Santiago | Jet Division, Fountain Valley High School President| July 20, 2013 -
El Presidente. The Big Honcho. The Leader. I never thought that I would be called ANY of these nicknames, especially as a junior! Hi guys, I’m Manuel Santiago, Mannytee(teehee), the President of Fountain Valley from JET DIVISION! Whaddup!!?!? Anyways, being the president of my club is actually really… weird. Well, first of all, it’s a pretty big responsibility and when I got sworn into Presidency, there was a HUGE weight put upon my shoulders. It was kinda creepy. Anyways, even though my term is only a few months in, it still feels a bit weird. I already have a feel and a groove going on for my term, but. It is just. Peculiar. Having a board who would do ANYTHING for you AND your club is pretty great. So if YOU are a young member who would one day want to be where I am seated as a President, then you should DEFINITELY continue reading!
What is it like being President? What’s it like? Well, it is, first of all, a HUGE responsibility. Remember, what keeps our District together is our clubs. And if the Presidents can’t do so, then there would be no KIWIN’S. Being President is being like the communicator for you club between your Division and the entire District. It is pretty much being the one who goes up to that stage and shake our Governor’s hand while he/she hands you that shiny, sacred, envied trophy for “Most Interclubs” or “Distinguished Club”. Yeah, being the President has its ups and downs, but hopefully MAINLY ups! So what is it like being a Club President? Exhilarating.
What is it like having a board? Well, a board isn’t a group of people who are there to complete the tasks you give them! Remember, we are all human; therefore NONE of us are perfect. Unless you’re Beyonce. Beyonce isn’t even human, okay. Ugh Beyonce... (O.O) QUEEN BEY. Anywaaaays, like you, your board needs guidance. As the President, you are there to guide, lead, and educate each member AND board member. It seems like a huge deal, but when you do it right, you know you are leaving a lasting legacy that will hopefully improve your club in the future. YOUR BOARD MEMBERS ARE NOT YOUR MINIONS. That is what I literally thought at first. But as our term progressed, I found out many of their weaknesses needed to be assessed. I needed to be the guy who taught them how to do this, or how to fix that, or how to attempt this. You are the one teaching your board how to, when to, and all the other questions they ask of you. So remember, your board may seem like minions, but one day, there will come the time when they are the next President, and they have no idea what they’re doing!
So yeah, a lot of people ask me “What is it like?” Well. It’s like any other board member! You take responsibility for your own actions, you try your best to get your job done, and you do anything in your power to protect, educate, love, teach, nurture, and lead your home club in whatever they go through. Long live Beyonce, and may her powers bless us all. (;O)--]--<
Upon entering La Quinta High School, I always had the intentions of joining other clubs. Whenever someone talked about KIWIN'S, I always responded with, "What's KIWIN'S?" or "Is that a kiwi club or something..." Never would I have imagined that this club would change my whole high school life. One change of heart led to many experiences that I will remember for the rest of my life. During Club Rush, I wanted to join some other clubs, but there were way too many other students who wanted to join them as well. I looked over to the KIWIN'S booth and saw that there was no one signing up at the table... so I just took a chance and signed my name under the sign-up sheet. They gave me a bracelet and told me about the meeting on the following Thursday. After that meeting, everything was set. I went in the club and sought to have fun with my friends. However I never thought that I would ever be a board member. Little did I know that being a board member would change my life as well. I became super outgoing after the time passed by, my fascination for this club spiked with every passing year, my number of friends who shared the same love for KIWIN'S grew in numbers, and I unintentionally joined a second family. I have been through so much with this club - all of the hours, laughs, tears, pictures, and moments will never be replaced and I am blessed to be involved with such a club. Fast forward three years in KIWIN'S and two terms on board and look where I am now - me as a candidate for Vice President of La Quinta KIWIN'S? I must be crazy. I started as a Sophomore Representative and worked my way up to Committee Chair... but I never would have imagined being Vice President of this club. Whether or not I acquire the Vice Presidency, I have no regrets with this club. This club has given me so many spectacular experiences and I would not take any of them back or change anything. For those members out there who feel like they don't know what to do in high school... take the opportunity and go with your heart to try something new. I did and look where I am now! Take that leap and you might be surprised at the outcome.
-Jessica Tran, La Quinta High School
Throughout my life up until high school, I've always been a typical shy and timid asian girl. I was always the girl who stood in the back and tend to excuse myself from group involvement. I have to say, I didn't like being this shy girl. In the back of my head, I always knew that I needed to step out of my shell and work towards becoming that "outgoing" girl. For a girl like me back then, becoming this "outgoing" girl was quite the challenge. So, this was Erika Goto until I walked into high school. Literally when I walked in.... Just kidding. Ha. Ha. That was me attempting to be funny... Back to the blog.
High school was drastically different from anything I've experienced before. It was a whole new world opening up in front of me. Throughout my freshmen year, I was looking for a place to fit in and eventually stumbled upon KIWIN'S. As cheesy as it sounds, I instantly fell in love with everything about this eye opening organization called KIWIN'S.
From what you've heard so far in my story, you would've never guessed that I wasn't actually a member of KIWIN'S until my sophomore year. But that's a fact. I attended numerous projects and fundraisers during my freshmen year because of my friends, but I couldn't call myself a kiwinner yet.
So finally, sophomore year came around and I officially became a KIWIN'S member. Even though anyone could become a general member, it was such a honor for me to achieve it. By this time, I was becoming a new person - slowly inching towards that "outgoing" girl.
So the point to this blog is that in KIWIN'S, anyone and everyone is accepted for who they are and that I myself and others have grown so much from being a part of this wonderful organization. I can't perfectly put into words how much this organization has changed me into who I wanted to become. Not only did the people I met through KIWIN'S change me, but the idea of leadership and self confidence grew on me because of KIWIN'S. I have to give a great big thank you to KIWIN'S and to all the people who are a part of it. For all you shy souls, trust me, it's worth stepping out of that shell of yours. Enough of my rambling, so that's my KIWIN'S story.. What's yours? -Erika Goto
Life is definitely full of challenges, but hey... "just get back up when it knocks you down". Allow me to tell you a story about what happened to me over the summer.
What started as a normal sunny, fun day just getting together with my division for a social ended up with me standing in front of the Bart(Bay Area Rapid Transportation) Station with my head down watching blood drip out off my forehead. I heard screams from my members cursing at the man who attacked me with a hammer. “Sorry” was the last thing I heard from the coward that ran away. I looked up to see if my members were alright even though I thought I was going to pass out when I realized how much I was bleeding.
I was rushed to a Hospital close by where the doctors cleaned me up, performed a CAT scan on me, and wrapped my head up. I was worried about my parents so I called them just so they could hear my voice and know that I was alive and conscious. I was really scared and shaken up from the whole thing, and so many things came to my head. I couldn't stop thinking about KIWIN'S and the people that I have in my life. The thought of death and what would happen if I was gone frightened me and definitely made me burst into tears until my family, Ms. Turner and a few KIWIN'S members arrived to visit me. I was incredibly grateful to see them, because I was emotionally unstable.
After 6 hours in the Emergency Room, I was transferred to another hospital so I could receive better medical treatment. To be honest, I thought I wasn't going to make it through until a plastic surgeon came to the rescue to stitch me up. The plastic surgeon kept me calm and made me believe that I was going to be alright even when I was losing hope in myself. During the surgery, I couldn't stop thinking about everything and everyone that I would leave behind if I didn't push through.
I returned home after the surgery with a bruised eye, swollen, yet numb forehead, and a total of 82 sutures above my right eyebrow. The amount of support that I received from District Board, my members, Kiwanis, family, and friends was incredibly amazing. I don’t think I would be emotionally stable if it weren’t for them. I took a break from KIWIN’S and work for a few days and resumed to it later when I regained my strength. I was not ready to give up on school, KIWIN'S, and everything I have worked on because of a blow to the head.
Remember to take care of yourself first before anything else. Life will always bring us unpredictable challenges that arise on our journey to success, but we should never let negativity taint our life or discourage our ambition.