Every story worth telling has a hero, a villain and a message. It may tell us about specific people, but it teaches us something about what we all are really like. The villain of this story is someone we cannot even understand. The motives of Nature will forever be beyond our comprehension.
The elevated land of Nepal is one of exceptional beauty. This same land that has made the country famous has now made its people pay an insufferable price.
Over 7,000 people have left us. Over 100,000 have been stolen of a home. Over 10,000 recover from injury. They spent their lives building a home; they worked to support a family. Many of them have lost both. Their life’s work has been taken away by a moment of Nature’s anger.
Now, their first struggle is simply to survive. Clean water and food are in short supply. The street is the only bed and the stars are the only blanket.
The heroes of this story are among us. Since the need arose, Lions have risen. The Lions of Nepal, captained by PCC Sanjay Khetan, MCC Bharat Dhugal & many more leaders have led the charge. Lions are working day and night. Every day, we are saving lives in Nepal. We are also giving hope for a new life.
Lions are distributing food, water, clothes, sanitary ware etc. The queues for these items are very long and full of tension. The people realize that surviving the aftermath of an earthquake is as difficult as surviving the event itself. Life in Nepal still hangs in a very delicate balance.
LCIF sent immediately $100,000 for Emergency relief. Donations have come from Lions across the world. Some have pledged money, others have shipped basic necessities. A team of Lions in England sent a plane full of water purifiers. The team of Lions on the ground is doing their best to stretch every dollar for maximum effect. Every donation will make a difference.
24 hours after the quake, almost all Nepali troops and police were deployed. They received radars from the French Army that detect human breathing. Soon, a 4 month old baby was pulled from under his collapsed home. For this baby, there is still hope. We shall give him a reason to live.
120 hours later, civilians continued to dig through the remains of a flattened hotel. Nearby, a foreign medical center still kept a set of ambulances with emergency first aid. It seemed like they were digging for a cemetery rather than for a rescue. However, all of a sudden, a stray dog barked. Something was breathing beneath the rubble. A few minutes later, a teenage employee of the hotel was pulled out alive. The ambulance gave him an intra-venous injection. After 5 days on the brink, his eyes finally opened. For him, there is still hope.
The average victim has lost his home and a large part of his family. However, he still reaches out to contact relatives who may still be alive. He gathers his belongings in a bag and wonders how he could make money. He lies down on the street corner to get some rest in the night before battling the next day. There is still hope in his heart.
Mt. Everest is only a few hundred kilometers north of Kathmandu. It’s 8.6 kilometers (5 miles) shook that day, causing avalanches that immediately killed 17 climbers. In 1924, the British Empire had sent their renowned explorer, George Mallory, to make the first serious attempt to conquer the world’s tallest peak. When asked why he would make such a massive effort to climb the mountain, Mr. Mallory replied, “Because it’s there”.
Our task is very similar. Why should we make such a massive effort to help the survivors? Because they are there. Because they are still alive. And it’s also because we are here. On the same planet. The same things make us smile and laugh. We just need to share the happiness. Together, we will make Nepal smile again.
On March 12, 2015, Cyclone Pam struck the island nation of Vanuatu. One of the worst disasters to ever strike the island, Cyclone Pam damaged or destroyed thousands of homes, schools and buildings, and displaced more than 3,000 people. Lions Clubs International Foundation (LCIF) awarded a US$10,000 Emergency grant to help meet immediate needs and provide food, water, clothing and blankets.
Shortly thereafter, LCIF awarded a US$100,000 Disaster grant to address more long-term needs. With the help of these grants and donations from Lions aroundthe world, the Lions of Vanuatu have been hard at work rebuilding their communities. In partnership with New Caledonia’s Solidarity Tanna, Lions of Vanuatu continue to provide critical aid to the cyclone victims. Every day, Lions are teaching people how to purify their drinking water and transporting and distributing food. They are providing much-needed medicine and rebuilding schools. Aside from their relief work, local clubs continue to carry out their traditional community service projects like distributing dictionaries to local schoolchildren.
From initial impact through long-term reconstruction, LCIF and Lions are committed to disaster relief. And the Lions of Vanuatu are a prime example of that!
The Nuevo Casas Grandes Paquimeitas Lions Club of Mexico organized a family garden project for the members of their community. They provided over 300 families with seedlings to plant tomatoes, cucumbers, chiles and more. Check out the Nuevo Casas Grandes Paquimeitas Lions on Facebook for more information and pictures from the event.
In celebration of our upcoming Centennial in 2017, we have asked Lions to take on the Centennial Service Challenge of serving 100 million by June 2018. Don’t forget to report your activities on MyLCI to receive Centennial recognition. Also, be sure to share your photos on your club’s Facebook page and use the hashtag #LIONS100.
Has your club organized a hunger relief project recently? Share your story with us!
LCI Leadership Development is pleased to present a “Club Officer Intensive” webinar series in June to help our new or returning club presidents, secretaries and treasurers achieve success and satisfaction in service to their clubs.
“Club President: Leader and Manager” guides both new and experienced club presidents on creating a positive and lasting impact in their year. The Role of the Club Secretary and The Role of the Club Treasurer will discuss officer roles and responsibilities and review the MyLCI major functions related to each office in step by step tutorials.
Do not miss these live online sessions crafted to support a strong start for club officers and an excellent year for clubs!
Register today for one of the sessions below:
Club Secretary Training:
The Role of Club Treasurer:
Club President–Leader and Manager
Oak Brook, IL, May 14, 2015 – Rep. Steve Chabot (OH) announced the introduction of HR 2290, “The Local Volunteer Organization Protection Act,” on May 13, 2015. The bill would amend The Volunteer Protection Act of 1997 by affording the same liability protection to volunteer groups and organizations as are already provided to individual volunteers, except in cases of willful misconduct, gross negligence, reckless misconduct, or flagrant indifference to safety.
“I am proud to sponsor ‘The Local Volunteer Organization Protection Act,’ ” said Rep. Chabot. “Local non-profit organizations make our society better by fostering democratic values often in partnership with government entities, and we should protect them from having to file bankruptcy as an alternative to incurring prohibitive legal expenses based on litigation that has little or no connection to their volunteers or employees. We need to do more to protect the future of local service organizations, and this is a bill that merits the public’s trust.”
Lions Clubs International, with its unique perspective on the need for additional protections for its service clubs as well as other volunteer organizations in the United States, worked with Rep. Chabot’s office to develop the bill.
“The bill protects the important contribution that non-profit organizations like Lions clubs make in their communities,” said Scott Drumheller, Executive Administrator of Lions Clubs International. “With more than 11,000 Lions clubs and 325,000 members throughout America, Lions are addressing real needs and making a real difference through hands-on service and humanitarian projects. This bill helps create an environment that supports and encourages the valuable service that so many communities depend upon.”
The bill’s provisions would prevent the application of vicarious liability rules to non-profit organizations who conduct their activities using primarily volunteers and who did not expressly authorize a harm-producing activity in anticipation of raising charitable funds. In addition, the proposed amendments would extend governmental immunities to nonprofit organizations for actions taken at the request, or on the authority, of a government entity that would be immune if it undertook the actions itself without creating or requiring governmental immunities.
The “The Local Volunteer Organization Protection Act” also has the support of prominent U.S. volunteer organizations, representing more than 2 million of America’s community leaders in all 50 states, each of whom is dedicated to improving the lives of others through volunteer service:
For more information, please visit http://lionsclubs.org
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