Welcome to the Square and Circle Club

Little did our founders, seven young Chinese girls, know in June of 1924 that their legacy of philanthropic endeavors would run into the next century. Today, eighty years later, the Square and Circle Club continues to work not only for its root community in San Francisco's Chinatown but far beyond. The original Hope Chest Project to aid famine and flood victims in China has grown into a list of multiple projects benefiting many diverse areas of our community.

Our fund-raisers have run the gamut from fashion shows, carnivals, rummage sales and teas to the publication of three cookbooks. Proceeds have helped buy a van with hydraulic lift to help transport frail wheelchair patients to On Lok Senior Health Services for day care and medical equipment for the Chinese Hospital. Funds have helped establish special programs for at-risk youth through the Chinatown Youth Center, improved facilities for battered women at the Asian Women's Shelter, contributed to building of a home for Alzheimer patients through Self Help for the Elderly, sponsored Reading Rooms at both the Main and Chinatown Branches of the San Francisco Public Library and supported the renovation of the Chinese YMCA and YWCA.

Another of our goals is to integrate children, high school youth, college students and adults into life in America. We have worked with immigrant children at the Chinese Education Center. We partially fund their annual Thanksgiving luncheon when the children dress in Pilgrim clothes and help prepare the feast. This introduces them to the American customs and to the meaning of the holiday. For several years the Square and Circle Club has sponsored scholarships for a "Washington Close-Up" program designed to introduce high school youth to the democratic process by observing a Congressional session, sitting in on committee meetings with representatives from their electoral districts and learning more about the political process and the importance of involvement. At the college level, we have regularly sponsored scholarships to the City College of San Francisco, San Francisco State University and Mills College.

The Square and Circle Club feels that the community service involves more than just providing funds. Members have actively participated in many community programs and have assisted with health drives organized by Health Center #4, distributed care packages to needy families and helped collect clothing for immigrants. We have held Easter egg hunts for Chinatown children and delivered practical gifts such as gloves, scarves, sweaters and other warm clothing to patients at Laguna Honda Hospital.

Our founders were exceptional women. They were pioneers in social consciousness. Unaware of their impact, they have become role models for today's women. The members of the Square and Circle Club are proud of our association with the San Francisco Public Library where our club's history is being archived and will be available for Internet access worldwide. With the continual support and energizing ideas of our members, Square and Circle will continue to be strong, innovative and true to its motto: "In deeds be square, in knowledge be all-round."