Today’s post is written by Lion Linda Madden, wife of Immediate Past International President and LCIF Chairperson Wayne Madden. Mrs. Madden just spent the past three days celebrating International Literacy Day with Christie Vilsack from USAID, a Lions Reading Action Program partner, Andreja Stojkovski from Lions of Macedonia, and other Lions and partners. Read on for Mrs. Madden’s recap of the events.
What an exciting week it has been! September 8 marked International Literacy Day, and I was honored to participate in various events, discussions and tours that focus on the importance of literacy and its connection with vision — especially for children.
As a former schoolteacher, I know how critical it is for children to develop early-grade reading skills in order to build a foundation for a strong education. And as a Lion, I understand the importance of vision screenings and its relation to education. With initiatives such as the Reading Action Program and vision screenings for children, Lions across the globe are helping children learn and read better every day.
Our first stop was to a library in Washington, D.C., where Christie, Andreja and I participated in a program discussing our shared goals of literacy for all. By working together with partners and stakeholders, including teachers, parents and disabled persons, we can advance our collective literacy and inclusive education goals. We also visited the Special Olympics Headquarters to discuss how we can work together to ensure social inclusion for children with disabilities.
Our next stop was Camden, New Jersey, to visit the South Jersey Eye Center. We began with a vision screening and reading activity at a nearby HeadStart program that the South Jersey Eye Center serves through its partnership with the Center for Family Services. One of my favorite parts of the day was reading to the young children! We also toured the South Jersey Eye Center Mobile Vision Clinic.
In Atlanta, Georgia, we visited the Georgia Lions Lighthouse for the Blind. What an incredible facility! The Georgia Lions Lighthouse focuses on providing a variety of eye health services, from full eye exams to eye surgeries and vision screenings, to uninsured and low-income residents of Georgia. It is also one of the sites for the pilot testing of the Lions lens through our partnership with Essilor. During the tour, we got to see beautiful dresses made from recycled eyeglasses, and learned how Lions clean and sort eyeglasses for distribution.
Thank you, USAID and Lions, for such a wonderful few days of events and for your tireless commitment to literacy and community service worldwide! How did your Lions club celebrate International Literacy Day?
Lion Linda Madden
To see more photos of the Lions and USAID International Literacy Day events, visit the Lions Facebook page.
During my recent trip to Bali in Indonesia, I had the privilege of visiting the doctorSHARE hospital ship, which provides healthcare services and surgeries thanks to a collaboration between doctorSHARE, Lions Club Indonesia MD 307, the University of Udayana’s school of medicine and the Sanglah General Hospital in Denpasar. This floating hospital travels around the islands of Indonesia providing healthcare services free of charge. In many cases, the patients treated have not seen a doctor in years.
While the ship was in Bali, the medical team (including nine doctors, five volunteers and several nurses) planned to treat 250 general patients, in addition to 20 patients in need of major and minor surgeries.
I am endlessly amazed at Lions’ abilities to help people in need through health programs such as the doctorSHARE ship, and the strong partnerships that we have developed in order to take action and follow our dreams!
We’ve already told you about the benefits of setting up a Facebook or Twitter account for your club, but what about a personal account? Perhaps you’re already connected on social media to stay in touch with friends and family, but don’t forget — your personal account is also a great way to share your Lions stories with people you already know. Through your personal Facebook or Twitter account, you can:
See our Creating a Personal Account on Facebook and Twitter guide to get started.
The Lions Club Balloon Festival and Fair at Highland Village, Texas, began in 1987. Today, the event has grown to become the largest scheduled event in the county, with upward of 25,000 people attending each year.
Watch the video above to see how the festival has become a premier event, with craft booths, balloon glows, entertainment food and more. Nice work, Lions!
Does your Lions club host a festival or fair in your community? Share your story!
Today marks International Literacy Day, which celebrates the importance of literacy as the foundation for education and social development.
This week’s celebration includes a joint event with Reading Action Program partner USAID. Lion Linda Madden, wife of Immediate Past International President and LCIF Chairperson Wayne Madden , will visit with Lions leaders and partners to discuss Lions’ commitment to increasing literacy rates worldwide and providing all children, especially those with vision loss and other disabilities, with the opportunity for a strong education. Programs such as the Reading Action Program, LCIF’s SightFirst and Lions/Special Olympics Opening Eyes help Lions reach these goals.
A special blog post from Mrs. Madden will offer a recap of the events.
How is your Lions club celebrating International Literacy Day?
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