The Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks of the United States of America is one of the oldest and largest fraternal organizations in the country. Since its inception in 1868, the Order of Elks has grown to include more than 800,000 men and women in more than 2,000 communities.
The BPO Elks is committed to the ideals of charity and patriotism. To that end, Elks have now disbursed, over the course of the Order's history, more than $3.6 billion in cash, goods, and services to the nation's youth, its veterans, the disadvantaged and handicapped, and to individuals and groups in support of patriotic and civic programs. Annually the BPO Elks give more than $200 Million in this fashion, and the Order ranks as one of the largest private providers of college scholarships in the nation.
The Elks have created a quiet network of good deeds that has profoundly changed millions of lives for the better, yet there is little public awareness of the impact of their vital work. Why is this so? Quite simply, the Elks have rarely sought recognition; nor have they gone to the general public with fund-raising efforts nor received monies from any level of government. Indeed, the flow of money and goods moves in the opposite direction: the Elks donated to the government the first veterans hospital; they contribute regularly to schools and police and fire departments; and they assist the young and the needy throughout this great nation.
How could this powerful force have come into being? And where does all this charitable giving come from? From the generous hearts of Elks members whose eagerness to share, whose prudent long-term planning, and whose willingness to serve for free and with enthusiasm infuses the Order with an exuberant and enduring expression of the true volunteer spirit.
Of note is the fact that the elected leadership of the BPO Elks — from the Exalted Rulers of the local Lodges to the national president, known as the Grand Exalted Ruler, as well as other decision makers at various levels — serve without salaries.
The Elks organization is governed through democratic representation, with overall statutes set by voting at national conventions. The BPO Elks national headquarters is in Chicago. The Chicago campus is also the site of the Elks National Veterans Memorial building, and it is the home of the Elks National Foundation, the Order's charitable trust; the Elks National Veterans Service Commission; and The Elks Magazine, the official monthly publication that is sent to every member of the Order.
Eye Clinic Annual Appeal
The Oregon State Elks provide Oregon’s children with the facilities for the best pediatric eye care in the region, possibly the nation. Thanks to your continued generosity, we now provide over 18,000 patient visits per year at the Elks Children’s Eye Clinic.
With Elks Support, the vision screening program has screened over 5,000 preschool children this year. Elks from every district of the state volunteered to assist with community health fairs and Head Start screenings.
Your state project is truly one to be proud of. The daily miracles that occur at the Elks Children’s Eye Clinic would not be possible without thousands of donors and volunteers who give time, money, talent and love. I hope you’ll join me and your fellow Elks in supporting our major project.
To donate online, please click the yellow “Donate” button.
While we won’t be sending out individual thank you letters, please accept in advance our sincere thanks and appreciation of your thoughtful gift. Your donation is tax deductible; please keep this for your tax records. (Elks Children’s Eye Clinic 501-C Tax ID # 93-1117289).
Warmest wishes for a happy holiday season,
Past State President, Oregon State Elks Association
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