In the next 15 years, we’ll see major breakthroughs for most people living in poor countries. In its annual letter, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation bets that polio, guinea worm, river blindness and blinding trachoma will be eradicated by 2030.
Lions and Lions Clubs International Foundation (LCIF) will play a critical role in the elimination of both onchocerciasis (“river blindness”) and trachoma. LCIF’s SightFirst funds projects that address these diseases by creating high-quality, sustainable projects that distribute necessary medications, deliver eye care services, develop infrastructure, train personnel and/or provide rehabilitation and education in underserved communities.
Joni and I were in China two weeks ago, and what an incredible experience we had! We met a Lion who has the first guide dog in Beijing, welcomed a new district with 1600 members in Xianyang, chartered a new club with 200 members in Kunming and got to go with them to their first project.
This new club has adopted a children’s hospital for cerebral palsy patients. They will be providing them with financial support, food, medical and other supplies. We got to meet many of the children as well. It was a wonderful experience to see this new club in action!
Be sure to follow me on Facebook to see more activities, projects and pictures from my trips around the world.
Last week, more than 25 members and leaders of youth outreach and the art community came to Loyola University Museum of Art to judge this year’s Annual Lions International Peace Poster Contest finalists. There were 132 posters –all created by 11, 12 and 13 year old children from around the world.
Amongst those in attendance were Greg Allen, Founding Director of the Neo-Futurists; Gary Fry, Director of Midwest Young Artists Voices Rising; James Lackey, Artist at Horizons for the Blind; Steven Rosengard, Assistant Curator at the Museum of Science and Industry; and many more.
We would like to thank our judges for their participation and congratulate our peace poster finalists. The grand prize winner and 23 merit award winners will be announced on Saturday, March 7, 2015 at this year’s Lions Day with the United Nations.
Experience the impact of Lions Clubs International Foundation (LCIF) at the 20th All Africa Conference from February 4 through 8 in Brazzaville, Democratic Republic of Congo.
This year, there are a number of informational sessions at the forum, including one from LCIF. Be sure to attend the LCIF seminar on Friday, February 6, from 5:30 to 7 p.m. The Melvin Jones Fellows fundraising dinner follows at 8 p.m.
We look forward to seeing you there!
In 1917, the United States entered World War I, causing rapid industrial growth that led to many social problems, such as child labor, overcrowding and rapid spread of disease. Because of this, reformers sought ways to improve the conditions in their communities. Among them was Melvin Jones, secretary of the Business Circle.
He proposed this idea to his fellow club members who gave him the approval to gather clubs together for a meeting in Chicago. On June 7th, 1917, the first meeting was held with the Circle and a few other groups in attendance. It was then that the International Association of Lions Clubs was born. The first Lions Convention in Dallas, Texas opened on October 8th of the same year. Lions became international in 1920 when they chartered the first club in Ontario, Canada.
Be sure to watch the video above –the first in a series of centennial videos –to learn about the important events that took place during the beginning years of Lions Clubs International. You can download or view the entire Lions Quarterly on the Lions News Network.
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