100 million is a lot. Ask anyone. So, last year, when Lions announced our Centennial Service Challenge goal of helping 100 million people before the end of the association’s 100th anniversary, people may have thought we were a little crazy. But now we’re happy to announce that in a few short months, Lions’ service has already benefitted 20 million people!
This data, which measures Lion activities through December 2014, represents the first big step on the path to our Centennial celebration. Thanks to the incredible response from Lions like you, we’re on our way to achieving our goal!
Lions serve. From the Worldwide Week of Service to screening the vision of children in their community and Relieving the Hunger, Lion service touches the lives of people in every corner of the world. Leading up to our Centennial in 2017, Lions have an incredible opportunity to demonstrate the positive impact of service by joining together to help those in need.
We’re off to a great start, but we still have a ways to go. Keep serving and supporting the Centennial Service Challenge by visiting Lions100.org, where you’ll find info and resources to start planning your next Centennial service project today.
Remember, when Lions come together to serve, we can change the world!
Is there anything more important to successful club life and impactful service than cohesive Lions teams? In the “Minding Your Members: Leading Strong Teams” webinar, Lions will learn how to foster strong Lions teams through effective leadership that includes conflict management, empathy, being a changemaker and building bonds.
This interactive session offers practical scenarios to consider optimal leadership principles and a challenge to take back to your club, zone or district.
If you attend one leadership development webinar this year, make it this one!
Presenters: International Director Karla Harris, Past International Director Gary Fry, and Past Council Chairperson Jim Canon
Register today for a time slot below:
EDITOR’S NOTE: The following is a guest post by David Evangelista, Vice President of Global Development and Government Relations at Special Olympics International.
Something remarkable is taking place in the island nation of Jamaica.
Behind the images of tropical tourist destinations, and beyond the cultural icons that represent the nation on the global stage- a most innovative approach to social inclusion is taking root.
A group of youth gathers together outside of Kingston to clean up the local beaches and parks. The team leaders direct the group in taking on various tasks to complete the mission at hand. From the outside, the view looks like a standard youth-led service project to help protect and preserve the environment. However, and as is often the case with true innovation, there is much more below the surface than meets the eye.
What transpired on the beaches outside of Kingston drives to the heart of a development priority facing the entire globe – forging sustained social inclusion to empower children and adults with intellectual disabilities. It is an unlikely setting to see one of the most promising practices in human and social development.
Through a growing partnership shared between Special Olympics and Lions Clubs International, the Leos of Jamaica, together with Special Olympics Jamaica athletes, are challenging the way society views individuals with intellectual disabilities. What is their methodology?
Service. And fun.
The Leos of Jamaica have actively engaged and included Special Olympics athletes into local service projects to expand their reach. But much more is taking place. As part of the “Invite an Athlete” initiative, the Leos of Jamaica are helping break down the barriers of discrimination and stigma, and are replacing them with open doors of acceptance, empowerment, and unity.
The Leos of Jamaica have gained a deep understanding of a key innovation that stands to truly uplift a population long left in the shadows. Through their leadership and vision, the Leos have helped transform Special Olympics athletes from objects of service- to agents of service. What was once a population targeted for simple charity has, through Leo engagement, become a population whose willingness to serve is equally valued on a local and national stage.
Special Olympics and Lions Clubs International continue to work to show that individuals with intellectual disabilities have core talents and abilities that they long to offer to their communities. Both on and off the playing field, Special Olympics athletes and Leos continue to team up to create social inclusion- one clean beach, one basketball game at a time.
Something truly remarkable is happening in Jamaica.
Lions Clubs International Foundation has been partnering with Special Olympics International since 2001 through the Opening Eyes program to provide free vision screenings at select Special Olympics sporting events worldwide. Athletes also receive diagnoses for vision-related problems, corrective and protective eye wear, and are taught how to take better care of their eyes. The partnership expanded in 2013 to reach even more people.
The Porbandar Lions Club of India organized a “Relieving the Hunger” project to benefit the underserved children in their community through the distribution of nutritious food and snacks. Follow them on Facebook to see their current projects and events.
Youth, vision, environmental and hunger projects such as this one help to reach our goal of serving 100 million people in celebration of our Centennial. We encourage Lions all across the globe to take part in the Centennial Service Challenge, which has been extended to June 2018. Don’t forget to report your activities to MyLCI and post pictures and videos on your club’s social media sites. Use the hashtag #LIONS100 so that clubs around the world can see the impact you are making in your community!
What is your club doing to feed children in need?
During a recent SightFirst Advisory Comittee (SAC) meeting, two grants were approved for vision projects in the South Pacific, totaling US$527,745.
Fiji, District 202-K: A grant of US$237,945 was awarded to the New Zealand Lions, District 202-K, to improve and expand eye care services at Lions Diabetes Eye Clinic in Lautoka. Lions will also establish diabetic retinopathy screening services at the sub-divisional hospitals in four urban and rural areas in Fiji. It is estimated that 25,000 people will benefit from this project of five years.
Papua New Guinea, District 201-Q2: A grant of US$289,800 was awarded to the Lions of Australia, District 201-Q2, to establish a National Resource Center (NRC) for eye health in Papua New Guinea. The NRC will serve as a base of operations for a future ophthamology residency program and other training initiatives for eye care personnel. It will also function as a central distribution center for low-cost spectacles, surgical consumables and low vision devices.
Lions and Lions Clubs International Foundation (LCIF) are committed to saving sight around the world.
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