Colombia celebrated the elimination of river blindness following a 20-year campaign made possible through the efforts of The Carter Center, Lions, and local and international partners. LCIF Chairperson Wayne Madden joined Former U.S. President Jimmy Carter at a special ceremony in Bogotá to congratulate President Juan Manuel Santos and the people of Colombia.
“This is a momentous day for the people of Colombia, and it’s an honor to share in their celebration. Lions are committed to preserving sight and eliminating preventable blindness around the world. Colombia is proof that when compassionate, committed people work together, that goal is within our reach,” said LCIF Chairperson Wayne Madden.
“Colombia’s achievement demonstrates that a future free from river blindness is possible for everyone in the Americas,” said former U.S. President Jimmy Carter, founder of The Carter Center and a Lions club member.
To advance the river blindness campaign in the Americas, LCIF donated over US$3 million to The Carter Center, which has led the campaign to wipe out the disease in Latin America. Through LCIF’s SightFirst program, Lions have contributed over US$42 million dollars to The Carter Center for onchocerciasis and trachoma projects in Latin America and Africa.
Read the press release about this announcement to learn more.
The 2013-14 Global Service Action campaigns kick off this month with Engaging Our Youth. Encourage young people to not only participate in youth volunteer opportunities and service projects, but to also help develop, organize and lead them. Involvement in service projects at an early age can help young people gain valuable skills and understand the importance and impact of serving their community.
Work with your local Leo club and the youth in your community to organize a project that interests them. Young volunteers often enjoy hands-on activities with immediate results. Project ideas include:
Visit the Engaging Our Youth page for more project ideas and resources.
How does your Lions club encourage young people to serve the community?
During my recent trip to Penang, Malaysia, I was very excited to meet the children and Lions of the Lions REACh (Resource and Education for Autistic Children) Center. After an impressive drum welcome performance, Lions showed me around the center, where they work closely with children to help develop speech, communication, social and motor skills. There is a computer room to teach reading and technology, and children also learn to make pottery and crafts, which they sell to help raise money for the center.
I was so touched to see how Lions are helping children in need follow their dreams!
The video above is a segment from a past issue of our Lions Quarterly (LQ) video magazine, and it can give you a better look at Lions in action at the REACh Center. I have no doubt you’ll be truly inspired by the services provided at the center.
Lions everywhere provide community services for children to address issues such as health, hunger, poverty, disease and more. What service activities does your club organize that are specifically geared toward children in your community?
The July/August LION Magazine introduces our new international president, Barry J. Palmer, and his theme for 2013-14: “Follow Your Dream.” Learn about his life story and what his dreams are for the coming year. Also, find out how a 90-year-old club is being revitalized with college student Lions and read one man’s moving story about why he became a Lion.
Also in this issue:
In the digital LION find exclusive content such as videos introducing President Palmer and his theme for 2013-14. Watch a Lion performing an original song about Lionism and experience the joy of a man regaining his sight.
Visit the LION Magazine page to contact editors, view past issues and listen to the audio version of the magazine.
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