About 2500-3000 immigrants from the former Soviet Union live in the Kansas City area. The first family from the Soviet Union arrived in Kansas City in 1974. For 24 years (until 19980) immigrants did not have their own organization. On April 26, 1998, they decided to publish their own newspaper and build an organized community. The newspaper's Board of Editors (legally the Board of Advisors) was actually the first organization. Although originally its first members were elected, almost from the beginning any community member, including our American friends, could become members of the Board of Editors. For the first year Board of Editors had formal meetings about once a month. Later we started to publish an internal newspaper, "Figa v karmane," that consisted of all incoming materials and documents with which Board members should be familiar, and instead of the Board meetings, the Russian Club was started. Two picnics in September 1999 were the beginning of our Club.
The visitors of our Club were not only immigrants, but also our American friends. Even among immigrants there were people of more than dozen of different nationalities. That's why the name of our club was changed to the International Club and the original name of our newspaper, Voice of Russians, was changed to Voice of New Americans.
For the first three seasons our club met at a school building that belongs to the New Haven Seventh-day Adventist Church of Overland Park. For the 4th season our club met at the Valley View United Methodist Church. The first 2 seasons we had social meetings with open agenda. In other words, no special activities were offered.
The last 2 seasons we had English as a Second Language (ESL) classes. The future activities in our club for upcoming season will be announced shortly.
<= GO BACK
<<== BACK TO MAIN