The Goodfellows club was nearly two decades old before it had an official charter. The purpose of the club, which had always been that of helping children in need, was put into words in the new charter document, which was signed and notarized on Sept. 21, 1935, 81 years ago.

The Goodfellows charter makes clear what remains a singular guiding policy to this day — that every dollar donated to the club goes to help children in need — no exceptions.

The charter states in part:

“I. The name of this corporation shall be ‘The Goodfellows Club of Owensboro, Kentucky’...

“II. This corporation shall make no profit for its incorporators and shall earn no income on behalf of its incorporators. It shall have members at all times only such persons who are personally willing to contribute of their time and talents to the charitable purposes for which this organization is organized, without income or renumeration or profit to themselves. This corporation shall be nonsectarian and nonpolitical and has for its purpose the doing of charity and the bringing of cheer and good fellowship to all needy persons within its reach to whom there does not appear to be any other reasonable source of such charity and without regard to their race, color, religion or political affiliation.

“III. The purposes of this corporation are, and shall be, to do acts of charity, good cheer and goodfellowship for the special benefit of needy children of Owensboro and Daviess County, to receive, accept or expend funds for charitable purposes, shoes, other articles of clothing and food for distribution to needy persons ... and to do all things consistent with the raising and distribution of funds for charitable purposes in accordance with the free and voluntary impulses of the members and officers of this corporation.

“IV. ... The privilege is extended to the incorporators to include as members of this incorporation such other persons as they may deem inclined toward open-handed charity, good cheer and goodfellowship, without regard to race, religion or politics, and who shall be willing to unite with the incorporators in carrying on the purposes of this organization; and admission to membership shall be upon such terms as may be prescribed by the by-laws.’’

In the years since the charter was signed, dental and medical assistance has been incorporated into the Goodfellows’ mission.

One thing that hasn’t changed is the simple way to become a Goodfellow: To join, mail a contribution to Goodfellows Club, Messenger-Inquirer, Box 1480, Owensboro, KY 42302, by bringing contributions to the newspaper office at 1401 Frederica St. or online at goodfellowsclubofowensboro.org/contribute/.

Goodfellows Roll Call, Nov. 24, 2017

Goodfellows Soup Day for Kids ...

Anonymous cash donations ... $7,336.15

In loving memory of Joe and Louise

McKinley, Tom and Roselie Brady,

Lucas McKinley Woodward, and

Joe Brady ... $500

In memory of Joan K. Adams ... $100

In memory of Paul and Gertrude

Castlen ... $50

In memory of Xenia Beers Love, the

Harrison children ... $20

Lauren Emmick ... $10

Total for Goodfellows Soup Day

For Kids ... $8,016.15

First Security Bank matching

Donation ... $25

Anonymous ... $20

In memory of Tom Payne by

Patricia Bumm ... $15

In memory of Tom Payne by

Maurice Payne ... $10

Total as of Nov. 24, 2017 ... $8,086.15

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