Throughout the year SOC is busy supporting programs directed at boys and girls in Southern California. In support of our motto “Each child is a winner in our eyes” SOC sponsors events focusing on recognition of all participants rather than signaling out on just a few. Our rich heritage of encouragement of self-respect in southern California youth provides the driving force behind all our activities.
We believe that all kids regardless of their situation should enjoy a memorable holiday season, and for nearly 20 years we have partnered with the Garden Grove Boys and Girls Club to host a Holiday party for less privileged families. This has become one of our most enjoyable traditions, at the event carnival games are played, a hearty holiday dinner is served and to top off the evening, gifts for the kids are handed out by Santa Claus. For some of the invitees this is the only holiday celebration that they will have.
An annual event since 1966, SOC honors Southern California graduating High School seniors of Japanese ancestry. The seniors are invited to a semi-formal dinner and have an opportunity to listen to a relevant guest speaker. Each graduate is acknowledged for their scholastic achievements and community involvement and receives the Suburban Optimist’s Youth Recognition Achievement Award that evening. Four to six scholarships are also presented to deserving applicants at the evening’s event.
Arguably one of the club’s greatest achievements, the original founders of SOC wanted to create a youth organization to provide an athletic, cultural and social environment for the children of Japanese ancestry. Thus, the South East Youth Organization (SEYO) was created. SEYO began the first year with five boy's baseball teams from ages 8 to 12. The first SOC Sports Group was started soon after as a coalition of SOC families solely focused on participation in SEYO activities. Now our SOC Sport Group is an integral part of the overall SOC organization. The Sports Group promotes and supports sports programs that encourages and facilitates the development of good character, citizenship and sportsmanship.
Each year the SOC organization strives to advance its mission of serving the youth and continuing to make a difference in the community. With the help and hard work of our members and supporters, we will continue to carry on the tradition of hosting community support and recognition programs set forth by the original club founders and Optimist International.
Explore our EVENTS page to find out more.
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The Suburban Optimist Club holds an annual Pancake Breakfast fundraiser usually in early Spring. Many organizations participate by selling tickets and helping out at the event. We serve over 2,000 meals in the early morning. A percentage of the proceeds from this event are channeled back to the participating organizations.
Annual raffle tickets are sold by our members to raise the need funds to support our club activities. Seven monthly $500 drawings and a final drawing of $2,500 is held at next year’s installation dinner. Each monthly winner’s ticket will be “returned to the barrel” and is eligible to win remaining drawings. A monthly drawing is held at the monthly board meetings starting in March with the grand prize winning ticket selected in September at our annual installation dinner.
One of our major fundraisers each year is the Annual Suburban Optimist Club Golf Tournament. Proceeds from this event support the many youth programs that are conducted throughout the year. Due to the current situation with COVID 19 this event has been cancelled but will be resumed when the pandemic subsides. Typically, this event is held on the Monday prior to Memorial day at Yorba Linda Country Club and includes Range Balls, ½ Cart, Coffee, Prize Fund, Hole-In-One Contest, Fabulous Door Prizes and Lunch.
Half President: Ray Okazaki
Half President: Duane Koba
Past President: Al Baez
Communications: Eric Shishima
Media: Mark Watanabe
Secretary: Nancy Suzuki
Treasurer: Kent Suzuki
Sgt At Arms: Mark Uyehara
Octagon Advisor: Lisa Kiyohara
Rice Paper: Mako Mizuki
SOC Foundation: Dan Fukushima
Directors: Stan Enomoto, Ellen Higa, Scott Iwamoto, Kasie Leung, Gene Murakami, Tracy Okida, Steve Okamura, Sharon Okazaki
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