Support MLS

donate-buttonMLS is put on free of charge for all attending students.  The seminar has an annual cost of $40,000, which is raised by our board of directors and staff each year.

Download our informational flyer at left for a basic overview of the seminar. brochure button

There are several ways that you can help ensure the future of seminar:

Participate in one of our fundraisers

  1. Alumni Pledge – Our annual alumni pledge asks seminar alumni to donate a small amount based on your year of attendance. If you attended in 2005, you would donate $20.05. If you attended in 2013, you would donate $20.13. To make your alumni pledge, please visit our alumni pledge Paypal link.
  2. Blue Springs Optimists Fireworks Stand: We need alumni and friends who can help man the Blue Springs Fireworks stand on July 3rd and 4th each summer. Volunteers can work any hours between 9a-9p on the 3rd or 4th. Food, drinks and friendships are all free perks of working the event, and it counts towards the staff civic event requirement. 2018 volunteers can contact the event coordinator, Garrett Hill: 636-584-1746
  3. St. Louis Trivia Night: 2018/2019 details coming soon. Thanks to all who attended our January 2018 Trivia Night!
  4. April Fundraising Challenge – During the month of April we attempt to raise $5,000 for seminar by asking friends, family and alumni to donate anywhere from $1 to $10 via our digital campaign. 2019 Campaign information coming soon..
  5. Hold your own local fundraiser – interested in organizing an MLS fundraiser in your home town? Email the main account (missourileadership@gmail.com) for guidelines and help!

Sponsor a student – 

Student sponsors are $300. Every sponsor will receive a hand-written thank-you letter from the student they sponsored, telling you about the students experience. You can donate through paypal or you may send in a student sponsorship via check to:

Ms. Taylor Rutledge
PO Box 53
Ozark, MO 65721

Donate Gift-in-Kind (GIK) items

Seminar has lots of items we are always in need of. By asking your workplace, friends or a local business to donate one or more of these items you are helping save us a huge expense. Please download our latest GIK list here and email us at missourileadership@gmail.com if you have any questions.

Donate dollars

Every dollar helps. To make cash donations, please use our paypal site or send checks to:

Ms. Taylor Rutledge
PO Box 53
Ozark, MO 65721

Speak to a local civic club 

If you are an alumni of the program, we could use your help in securing more sponsors for students from local civic organizations. If you are interested in helping with this, please email: missourileadership@gmail.com.

Where does funding normally come from?

We are very lucky to have the generous support of Optimist Clubs and General Federated Women’s Clubs (GFWC). Many local Optimists and GFWC clubs across Missouri sponsor the cost of a student from their town attending the seminar. We also have several clubs that help us do significant fundraising in addition to student sponsorship, including Lake Lotowana Optimists, Blue Springs Optimists,  Sugar Creek Optimists and the Kirkwood Optimists. Without their help, the event would not be possible.

We have two sponsored dinners during seminar. Our Dinner-With-Professional event is sponsored and planned by the very generous Tom Rienhardt and Ruthie Finet. Our Dinner with the Optimists event is sponsored, organized and put on by the Warrensburg Optimist Club.

We do several fundraisers each year, including attending Optimist Conferences and selling raffle baskets, St. Louis Trivia Night with the Kirkwood Optimists emceed by the lovely Sophie Zvagalia, and selling fireworks with the Sugar Creek Optimists.

Lastly, all our staff must complete a fundraising requirement in order to return.

But even with all the support we do have, it is a struggle to raise the funds each year and sometimes we cannot pay our bills in full until months after seminar has ended. 

That’s where you come in. By donating GIK items, sponsoring a student, or simply just donating a few dollars, you help ensure that the seminar continues to happen each year.

All donations go directly to covering the cost of the seminar, which has a direct impact on youth in communities across the state of Missouri. Thank you in advance for any help you can provide.

Seminar Squeezes –

Taylor Rutledge
2018 Chairperson

 

©2019 MLS

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