North Side Otters Foundation

Charitable Foundation

The North Side Otters Foundation is 501(c)(3) charitable foundation that was created to raise funds for charitable activities related to the participants, families, and geographic area served by the North Side Otters. This area has a high density of lower income families. The swim program represents a positive extracurricular activity in the lives of over 175 children each season (three seasons in a calendar year). The program accepts all children who want to participate regardless of ability to pay fees who are willing to attend the practices and follow the simple rules of mutual respect.  No funds from the Foundation are used for any competitive aspect of the program.  The Foundation's mission is community improvement.

Planned Foundation activities include:

  1. Providing fee assistance to families in need who would like to participate in the swimming program. Typical fees are approximate $110 per child per season and there are three seasons per year. This fee is paid to Des Moines Public Schools for use of the facilities and insurance.

  2. Providing charitable assistance for families in need. Families in need will be identified each year around the Christmas holiday and our hope is to be able to provide basic assistance such as food and clothing.

  3. Making capital improvements to the facilities. The facilities are located in the area high school which was built in 1922. It requires basic improvements each year simply to function for so many kids for so much of the year. Examples of improvements include replacement of starting blocks as they break or resurfacing starting blocks as they wear out or replacing parts of the heating element for the pool so that the pool is not too cold in the winter. While the facility is the property of the Des Moines Public Schools, there is very little money for maintenance in their budget due to funding shortages.

  4. Scholarships for college bound program participants based on applications. In the past the club has had alumni who were accepted to Grinnell College, Coe College, Luther College, St Johns, St Olaf and Cal Tech along with various Regent Universities in the area and more.

  5. Other activities will be strictly charitable.

If you are interested in contributing please contact, Irving Hahn at or 515-440-4965.

North Side Otter Foundation   4300 Westown Parkway  Suite 150   West Des Moines, IA 50266