During the 1940s, Exchange had organized its club activities around seven areas of service that included: education; agriculture; aviation; citizenship; commerce and industry; federal youth rehabilitation; youth and geriatrics.
Today, three Programs of Service and Exchange’s National Project, the prevention of child abuse, are lenses through which local clubs focus their energy and attention on their communities’ specific needs. The Programs of Service are Americanism, Youth Programs and Community Service.
Promoting pride in country, respect for the flag and appreciation of Americans’ freedoms are the primary purposes of Exchange’s Americanism programs. The tumultuous struggles of world powers in the twentieth century have done little to guarantee a peaceful future for the majority of the world’s people. However, there’s one country in modern times that people flock to for safety, freedom and opportunity — the United States of America. It is hard for Americans to imagine the horrors of modern struggles over religious and ethnic differences, the very differences we embrace.
Exchange’s Americanism programs were born in the aftermath of World War II. At that time, patriotism was unquenchable, and Exchangites joined veterans and other civic groups in heralding the rich blessings of democracy.
Community service is the lifeline of Exchange. Exchange Clubs across the country spend countless hours and dollars improving their communities each year. In fact, many of the projects within the Program of Service have a common goal of serving and benefiting communities.
The history of Exchange’s Community Service projects is quite impressive. Since the first group of Exchangites convened in 1911 in Detroit, Michigan, Exchange has been dedicated to serving its communities. Throughout the years, Exchange Clubs have been responsible for community endeavors of all types such as, cleaning up highways, sponsoring cultural programs, hosting art and industrial shows, holding state and county fairs and festivals, and organizing rodeos and athletic events. Exchange Clubs have also provided millions of dollars for scholarships, gifts, equipment, sponsorships, educational assistance, and other worthy causes.
America’s young people are its most precious resource. This is why, for many years, Exchange Clubs and National Headquarters have sponsored an impressive selection of activities designed to benefit and encourage our nation’s youth. Many of these rewarding programs are among the most popular and well-supported of all Exchange Club endeavors.
Through college scholarships, mentoring and guidance, and service recognition, Exchange is making a difference to America’s youngest generations.
National Project - the prevention of child abuse
Child abuse prevention became Exchange’s National Project in 1979, at the 61st National Exchange Club Convention.