Quotarians Serve the World
Quota International, Inc., was founded by Wanda Frey Joiner. Members contributed to a World War I victory campaign.
“Girls’ Service” was adopted as Quota’s main project. Clubs were encouraged to identify underprivileged girls, who after proper assistance, would reflect credit upon Quota and ultimately become loyal Quotarians.
Quota’s concept of service work was broadened to include good citizenship, international service work, service to women, and service to recognize the achievement of women.
Quota members supported the World War II effort by contributing to the Red Cross and volunteering for other war and defense projects. After the war, Quota sent a representative to a White House conference to urge inclusion of qualified women as delegates and members of international and national conferences and agencies.
Aid to deaf and hard-of-hearing individuals was adopted as a service mission.
The Quota International Fellowship Fund was established to provide room and board scholarships to college students. Also in the 1950s, the issue of traffic safety was a point of emphasis in each club’s service work. Quota was invited to send a delegate to a White House Conference on Highway Safety in 1954.
Quota begins a relationship with CARE, an international relief organization that Quotarians supported for the next 25 years. Support for CARE was phased out when Quota’s own Club-to-Club World Service Program was developed.
South Pacific members became involved with the Vial of Life, a community program that provides life-saving medical information in the home. Australian clubs also focused on making television news programs captioned for the deaf.
Aid to hearing- and speech-impaired people became Quota’s official service project. Every club began observing national hearing awareness week or month. This area gained momentum with a public awareness campaign about deafness—Shatter Silence. Quota was a pioneer in helping the public understand deafness.
The Quota International Charitable and Educational Foundation was established to help clubs expand programs in hearing and speech. The Fellowship Fund’s focus was narrowed to provide scholarships to students who are deaf or hearing-impaired or to hearing persons preparing to work with deaf people.
Closed captioning became a Quota-wide project. Other Shatter Silence programs included: increasing awareness of noise pollution; promoting hearing screening for infants and senior citizens; providing scholarships for workers in the field of hearing and speech; annually honoring an international Deaf Woman of the Year; providing subtitles for children’s videos in Australia; and becoming a member of the Council for Better Hearing and Speech Month in the United States.
The Club-to-Club World Service Program was initiated with Quota clubs around the world contributing to service projects of clubs in developing countries.
Assisting disadvantaged women and children became Quota’s second service mission. The Fellowship and Service Fund continues to provide scholarship funds for students, matching club scholarships.
Quota International begins to award large research grants to organizations seeking to better the lives of the deaf or hearing-impaired. In 1995, $100,000 was granted to the House Ear Institute in Los Angeles, California, for the “Quota Research Scholars” program. Another $25,000 was granted to the Children’s Cochlear Implant Center in Sydney, New South Wales, Australia, for continued research into how children deafened by meningitis adapt to cochlear implant usage. Approximately U.S.$125,000 was awarded to these organizations in 1998.
Quota International launched a new initiative to improve the impact and expand the visibility of its charitable arm. The board of directors approved a new promotional name for the Fellowship and Service Fund—We Share Foundation—to help build recognition for Quota’s service work. This name was selected because “We Share” is Quota’s motto. The Foundation wins the Blue Ribbon Award from the United Nations Association for its Club-to-Club World Service Program.
The We Share Foundation launches three programs: World Net Service, Thinking Globally/Acting Locally, and Volunteers in Action. In addition, the Foundation sponsors new initiatives to celebrate and support local Quota Service: Volunteer of the Year program, the first International Photography Contest, and the Foundation’s Polish and Shine News Release service. The We Share Foundation wins the Blue Ribbon Award from the United Nations Association for its newly launched Volunteers in Action program.
The We Share Foundation launches Quota Cares Month, a new international public relations initiative. In addition, the Foundation wins six major awards for its communications and programs. Also, the Morton H. Meyerson Family Tzedakah Funds of Dallas, Texas, U.S.A., gives a major award to the We Share Foundation in honor of David Nathan Meyerson, Marti Meyerson Hooper, Marlene Nathan Meyerson, and Leslie Meyerson Gordon, earmarked to fund construction of a new building for the Quota Home for Abandoned and Destitute Women and Children in New Delhi, India.
The We Share Foundation launches its Hurricane Relief Fund, Quota’s first-ever worldwide emergency response to natural disaster, when Hurricanes Katrina and Rita devastate Louisiana, Mississippi, and Texas. To facilitate and support relief through its Volunteers in Action program, Quota develops and posts regular updates on a project Web site, issues a call for requests, and solicits grant request applications. Through this network, Quotarians send messages of support and monetary donations totaling $48,358; local clubs lead relief efforts in the communities most affected. Through the 15 projects supported and coordinated by Quotarians, hurricane victims receive essential supplies; rehabilitated homes and schools; and social services. For its efforts, the We Share Foundation is named to the Associations Advance America 2006 Honor Roll.
The Cops ‘n’ Kids Literacy Program is officially adopted as a We Share Foundation Service Program. A project first undertaken by Quota International of Racine, Wisconsin, in 1997 to promote literacy and a positive community image for the police force, it has since been adopted by several Quota clubs. The We Share Foundation compiles best practices, club stories, and more information to support the program’s adaptation by other clubs, leading to the donation of tens of thousands of books and the development of countless literacy resources and programs. The Healthy Hearing Campaign is also launched; through the project, Quotarians promote healthy hearing and Quota by distributing ear plugs in their communities.
In addition to promoting Quota-wide projects, the We Share Foundation facilitates the sharing of best practices and programs by publishing its Club Service Directories, an on-line resource that includes more than 150 adaptable service projects shared at the Leaders as Listeners Town Meeting at Convention 2006.
Quota strengthens its 50-year relationship with the United Nations with its presence at the U.N.’s annual NGO conference as a member of the United Nations Association of the United States of America’s Council of Organizations. Quota commits to work to achieve the U.N.’s Millennium Development Goals, eight priorities designed to increase connections between individuals, communities, and institutions across the globe. Such connections are reinforced within Quota’s world, as the We Share Foundation’s Club-to-Club Program expands to include 15 projects, the most in its history.
A partnership with Siemens, Inc., allows U.S. Quota clubs to make a difference in the lives of children with hearing loss and their families. Through the Sound Beginnings Children’s Hearing Aid Program, Siemens provides Quota with vouchers for 100 hearing aids, which are distributed to children from disadvantaged backgrounds identified by local Quota clubs. Valued at several hundred thousand dollars, it is the largest donation that Quota has ever received. Siemens awards a second 100 vouchers for Quota clubs to continue this important program to help children with hearing loss.
Quota’s partnership with Siemens Hearing Instruments, Inc., on the Sound Beginnings Program—a program that permits clubs in the United States to distribute vouchers for free pediatric hearing aids to children diagnosed with hearing loss from disadvantaged circumvents—is renewed. Quota international celebrates its 90th year with celebrations in club communities worldwide.
Quota expands its Junior Quota (JQ) Club program to help local middle school, high school, or college students develop leadership skills and perform meaningful service work. With mentoring and support from Quotarians, Junior Quotarians—JQs—become effective leaders who can communicate, delegate, solve problems, and serve their communities. Quota’s Cops ‘n’ Kids Children’s Literacy program also flourishes in several countries, providing at risk children access to books while fostering positive relationships between children and police. The We Share Foundation’s 10th annual international photography contest captures Quotarians in action, making a difference in the lives of those in need. Three former White House photographers and a Pulitzer-nominated photojournalist served as judges for the contest.
Club-to-Club World Service expanded to a record-breaking 19 projects in five countries and received a new name – Hand-in-Hand. We also created a new World Service e-magazine, a new international public awareness campaign, and a new online Hand-in-Hand World Service news board.
Quota’s Healthy Hearing Ear Plug program was expanded to include a noise-induced hearing loss public awareness campaign, Listen Up, Turn it Down. Quota clubs are encouraged to educate their communities on the dangers of noise, particularly in children, and provide practical tips for protecting hearing health.