Talk:Service club

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Not a good idea, to merge with social and fraternal. Service clubs are a key feature of life in America. All admit women and minorities, the good ones seek them, though some local clubs remain unreconstructed in some locales. These tend to be geriatric. The main organizations -- Kiwanis, Rotary, and Lions -- are organized globally and are growing rapidly in the developing world. Civitans, Ruritans, and others operate chiefly in America.

Service clubs are organizations which have been formed in many parts of the world so that their members may volunteer to perform valuable community services, as well as enjoy fellowship, learn from knowledgable speakers and interesting programs which provide an insight into issues affecting the local and global community, develop and exercise leadership skills, expand business through professional networking, and gain a sense of worthwhile accomplishment. There are a wide variety of service clubs, with different goals, focus, programs, and memberships.

Financial Consequences[edit]

I also do not recommend this merge. It is desirable to maintain a strict separation between the terms “service organization” and “fraternal organization”. Corporate grant procedures often exclude “fraternal” organizations, only as a matter of obsolete or non-existent semantic connotations. Corporate foundations want to know their money is going to a 501c3, and that the organization will use all of the money as a “primary caregiver” or for a specific budgeted (and detailed to them) “hands on” event – and NOT for any overhead or organizational expenses. An organization may be fraternal, but for purposes of grant income should steer clear of the “fraternal” label and market themselves as a service organization. Ex: go to – “About Us” (tab) – “Corporate Giving”; Select “Guidelines”; Fraternal organizations are specifically excluded. I supported the IT for this foundation and they will reject grant requests with “fraternal” stated. Corporations with more specific guidelines have more hurdles, but in the long run mean more money. The (possibly obsolete) connotation is that “fraternal” has a focus on friendships and networking, and “service” has a focus on community works. SingDeep 01:46, 8 December 2006 (UTC)

Swap service club with service organization?[edit]

Currently, searching for service organization redirects to service club, and there is still a suggestion to join service club with fraternal organization. I have mentioned before in a previous talk topic that perception is critical to funding in the 501c3 world. Although that sounds like advocacy for a point, there is also a pure motive in wanting to get the definitions right. The distinction between a fraternal organization and a service organization is that a fraternal one places the social and networking possibilities first. They may have a significant service component, but the priority is on relationships between members. A service organization has a priority placed on a particular service mission, with fellowship and other personal goals coming in at a close second. Also, the term "club" has many connotations, but the first one that comes to mind is social. Choosing to rename this to service organization is a more neutral choice, and one with good reason. For instance, would you refer to the Red Cross as the Red Cross Club? What about the American Cancer Society Club? Like it or not, although the term club does have a connotation that works, the first connotation to come to mind is not ideal. SingDeep 05:46, 20 July 2007 (UTC)

Distinguishing Features[edit]

The article could be greatly improved by identifying the distinguishing demographics among at least the most prominent service organisations. This would be an important guidance for any unfamiliar person seeking to understand these organisations. It would also be of great practical value, as organisation websites and public material are generally silent on the issue: Most organisations profess inclusiveness (sometimes even citing this in their charter), so that actual deviations tend to be looked upon as an embarassment.

Notwithstanding pious pronouncements, each organisation invariably has a unique and clearly profiled social make-up. One organisation may be especially politically conservative, another may attract predominantly Catholics, a third will have an unusually well educated membership. In the absence of other factors, these features arise through self sustained natural drift. An organisation's pursuit of diversity may even lead them to actively solicit members outside their core demographic. To no avail. People have an innate and highly tuned sense for repressed discomfort among those in their environment. Count on them to gravitate to organisations where they feel they naturally belong.

Much of what Wikipedia has to offer is convenience. It provides a one stop source of information which, with a little effort, could be obtained elsewhere. In this case, the article can go beyond what we'd learn through reading the organisations' web-site. Wouldn't it be great if someone with the knowledge would summon the boldness to characterise the organisations as they really are, and not just as they wish themselves to be seen?

--Philopedia 12:13, 11 September 2007 (UTC)

definition of service club in Commonwealth countries[edit]

I am from Canada and it's always been understood to me that a service club is exactly what this article states as the American definition. If this is not the correct definition in Canada then what is it? NorthernThunder (talk) 09:17, 18 April 2010 (UTC)