ANZI Pacific Forum is on in beautiful North Queensland

Lions ANZI Pacific Forum 2022 – Cairns, Queensland Australia 22-25 September 2022 It’s great to be travelling with Lions. Plans are advancing for the next ANZI Pacific Forum in Cairns.  Check out the latest newsletter and stay tuned for information about the program and registration form! MARCH 2022 Newsletter out now Stay up to date […]

Kai Spence awarded Leo of the Year 2021

Kai Spence of the Central Queensland Leo Club in Lions District Q4 (Rockhampton) has been awarded the title of 2021 Leo of the Year. 

“The biggest benefit for me since becoming a Leo has been the relationships and the lifelong friendships I’ve developed. I have also loved seeing how this network has given others a way to grow and heal from trauma and life experiences. I was lucky enough to meet my wife through Leos. We met in high school but reconnected at Leos and now have a wonderful marriage and two beautiful daughters.” 

Competing on-stage at the Lions National Convention in Canberra in May 2021, Kai impressed the judges and audience with a heartwarming presentation about his experience of becoming a father. 

Kai has been actively involved in his Leo club since joining, holding a variety of roles including President, Secretary, Treasurer and Membership Chairperson.   

The Leo of the Year program offers young people the opportunity to share and celebrate their passion and commitment to community service, and a platform to voice their opinions on topics close to their heart. 

Over the next 12 months, Kai will travel around Australia visiting Lions Clubs with the goal of inspiring members to open more Leo Clubs.  

Leo members compete at a local and state level before each state nominates a finalist to compete on stage at the Lions National Convention. 

Participants are awarded points based on the following: 

  • Community service involvement (25%) 
  • Leadership and contribution to Leos (25%) 
  • Knowledge of Leos and Lions (10%) 
  • Knowledge of local and world affairs (10%)
  • Impact during interview (10%) 
  • Public speaking (20%)  

Find out more about the Leo Club program.

Leada Blackie awarded Leo of the Year 2022

Leada Blackie of the King Island Leo Club in Lions District T1 has been awarded the title of 2022 Leo of the Year.

“Overall, the benefits I have experienced have come from working closely with other and building strong relationships within the community.” 

Competing on-stage at the Lions National Mini Convention in Melbourne in May 2022, Leada impressed the judges and audience with a presentation based on the words of Eleanor Roosevelt,

“The purpose of life, after all, is to live it, to taste experience to the utmost, to reach out eagerly and without fear for newer and richer experience.” .

Leada has been actively involved in her Leo club since joining, holding a variety of roles including President, Secretary and Membership Chairperson.

The Leo of the Year program offers young people the opportunity to share and celebrate their passion and commitment to community service, and a platform to voice their opinions on topics close to their heart.

Over the next 12 months, Leada will travel around Australia visiting Lions Clubs with the goal of inspiring members to open more Leo Clubs.

Leo members compete at a local and state level before each state nominates a finalist to compete on stage at the Lions National Convention.

Participants are awarded points based on the following:

  • Community service involvement (25%)
  • Leadership and contribution to Leos (25%)
  • Knowledge of Leos and Lions (10%)
  • Knowledge of local and world affairs (10%)
  • Impact during interview (10%)
  • Public speaking (20%)

 

Find out more about the Leo Club program.

Torquay Lions 'Better Together'

Torquay Lions are ‘Better Together’

Following his installation as the new President of Torquay Lions Club, Lion Colin Bellis declared his theme of ‘Better Together’ will ensure local Lions will serve their community better, strengthen their Club, and unearth new ways to raise funds to help those in need.

“Our Leadership Team has met already to plan the next 12 months,” President Colin said.

“The idea of ‘Better Together’ will drive us throughout the year”.

Torquay Lions 'Better Together'

Outgoing president of Torquay Lions Club, Neil Roche (left) receives his Yearbook from incoming president Colin Bellis. The book consists of text and images of activities managed by the Lions Club during Neil’s year.

“A club which operates ‘Better Together’ will ensure our service to our community retains a very high standard, our fundraising will raise sufficient funds to meet local, national and international needs, and we will have fun while we work”.

He was speaking after the annual changeover dinner of the Torquay Lions held at the Lions Village recently when his new executive team was installed for the next 12 months.

Lions Vice District Governor Elect, Michelle Challis, formally installed the team at the changeover dinner.

Lions Vice District Governor Elect, Michelle Challis, presents new Torquay Lions Club member, Ross Yapp, with his Lions shirt, cap and name badge, after she inducted him into Lions Clubs International.

Outgoing President, Lion Neil Roche, proudly announced at the dinner that the Torquay Lions had distributed just over $54,300 to local, national and international causes during the past year.

“Under Lion Neil’s guidance, Lions worked hard to raise those funds for distribution,” the Incoming President, Lion Colin declared.

“As well, local Lions worked voluntarily doing deliveries for Feed Me Surfcoast”.

Torquay Lions

Torquay’s Lion of the Year was presented this month to Lion Tony Smith (left) for the amount of community service he did on top of his regular voluntary contribution to club activities. Outgoing President Neil Roche presented the award on behalf of the Club.

“Averaging six Lions delivering or loading each week, we supported Feed Me Surf Coast for 700 hours equating to $21,0000 for the past 12 months”.

Lions in the executive team supporting the President this year are Brian Keane, Leadership Chair; Neil Roche, Service Chair; Ken Farrow, Secretary; Deb Law, Treasurer; and Bill Ferguson, Membership Chair.

Torquay Lions Club

Following his year of service as President of Torquay Lions Club, Lion Neil Roche, as his last official act, unfurls the club’s honour roll of Past Presidents with his name added to the banner.

“Like many other service organisations, Torquay Lions are keen to develop our membership base. We would love to see anyone looking for local involvement with a purpose to try their hand serving the community with us,” Lion Colin pointed out.

“Most people who try out working with Lions, join us for the satisfaction they receive serving others,” he concluded.

Anyone interested in finding out more about Torquay Lions can visit their website here.

Skin Cancer Van at Bunnings, South Vermont

Lions Mobile Skin Cancer Van Stops in at Vermont South Bunnings

The Lions V Districts Cancer Foundation makes a real and lasting difference in people’s lives with their mobile skin cancer check vans.

On July 22nd and 23rd their mobile van was in Bunnings carpark at Vermont South, Victoria. Lions Club of Waverly President Eamonn Cooke writes:

This project had Lions Club of Waverley as the main club organiser, and we were assisted by Lions Club of South Vermont.  People attended on Friday 22nd and Saturday 23rd July to be screened for skin cancer.  Around 110 people attended.  Also, including myself, many first-time skin checks were carried out.  Both Lions groups donated the nett proceeds from their BBQs on Friday and Saturday to this project.  Our club’s donation was $1 500.  We also funded most of the skin cancer teams meals and their hotel accommodation.

Skin Cancer Van at Bunnings, South Vermont

Back in January 2022, the idea for this project was communicated to our club.  Over the next few months, we established a team from both Waverley and South Vermont to drive the event.  We are appreciative of the assistance we received from Bunnings Activity Officer Marie.  She was an important cog in this project donating her time to attend meetings, answer my phone calls and many emails.

During the lead up to the event I was constantly in contact with Wendy Hellebrand (OAM) Skin Check Roster/Volunteer screeners Coordinator.  Her knowledge and support were amazing.  It meant so much to have her help.

Lion Bob set up both an Electronic Spread Sheet with a dedicated email address to record the bookings. He also produced the event Running Sheet.  This was a key document that scheduled action items for the team to be aware of.  As the time got closer, I met up with Lions Dave Underhay and John Watson.  These two Lions were key to the unit getting to the Vermont South location and kept safely stored overnight.  Thank you both for your contribution and effort in making it all look so easy!

When I saw the unit and the length of it, I was awe struck. It’s amazing. Vermont Bunnings were generous by facilitating the unit to be located on their ‘prime real-estate’ at the front of the store beside the BBQ setup.

Show time was 6am Friday 22nd and it was zero degrees. Shivering Lions Bill, Tony, Bob and driver John were assembling the unit for the day. My left foot had frost bite. This was fabulous teamwork setting everything up. Again, on Saturday 23rd DG Graham and Lions David, Bob and driver John were hard at work. I managed to drop a heavy witches’ hat on the DG’s foot.

Friday morning Wendy and her team Susan, Bob, Iggy, Anthony arrived and got down to business. Their whole approach to examining people was so professional and non-intrusive.  Although standing there in my undies was interesting! A massive thanks must go out to the team.

On each day we had our ‘triage team’ from both clubs booking in the clients. Bob had electronically recorded each person and the attendance was fine.

Meanwhile, our Lions BBQ mob were hard at work drumming up business.  Both Waverly and South Vermont teams helped the day earning funds to assist the Skin Cancer Unit.

Lastly, a great big thank you to Lion Monica from the Lions of Waverley for baking a fabulous fruit cake for the skin cancer team! Delicious was the consensus.

Click here to find out more about how the Lions V Districts Cancer Foundation is saving lives.

International Peace Poster Contest Winner Presented with Award

The Booragoon Lions Club have presented National Lions Peace Poster Contest winner, Hannah Roberts, with her trophy and Lions International certificate of merit.

(L to R) Lion John Garrett (Peace Poster Chairman, Lions Club of Booragoon), Hannah Roberts and Fleur Cason from Applecross Senior High School.

 

Due to Covid-19 restrictions, it was only this week when Hannah and her family could visit the Club meeting to receive her international awards, certificates and other documents relating to her achievement.

Lion John Garrett, Booragoon Lions’ Peace Poster Chairman, also presented a Lions Community Service Award to the Arts Department of Applecross Senior High School in recognition of the School’s ongoing support for the Lions Peace Poster contest and the dedication and enthusiasm of art teachers Fleur Cason and Jo Sweetman.

 

 

This is the second consecutive year an art student from Applecross Senior High School and winner of the Booragoon Lions Club’s contest has been named Australia’s Peace Poster winner.

Hannah Roberts, Peace poster contest

Hannah’s proud family – Gillian and Paul (mum and dad) and brother Liam.

In 2020-21, student Sora Hamamura was the national winner followed by Hannah in 2021-22, aged 13 years at the time.

Based on creativity, originality and portrayal of the theme “We Are All Connected”, Hannah’s entry was chosen as one of 23 merit award winners at the Chicago international judging from over 600,000 entries.

She received US$500 as an International certificate of merit winner and AUD$200 as the National Lions Australia winner. 

The Peace Poster entry created by Hannah Roberts has been hailed as “amazing” by those who have seen it. 

To be chosen as one of just 23 merit award winners from across the world is indeed a superb honour.

Congratulations Hannah! 

Click here to see Hannah’s Peace Poster.

 

Lions Skin Check and Awareness Van

Lions Free Skin Checks Make a Difference

The Lions V Districts Cancer Foundation mobile skin check van stopped in at the seaside town of Torquay, southwest of Melbourne, offering free skin check services to those with limited access to specialist skin care professionals.

Torquay Lions Club President, Colin Bellis, is delighted that many local residents took up the opportunity for a free skin check over two days.

“When I visited the Lions Skin Check and Awareness Mobile Unit on its first day of operation in Torquay, a number of people had already been advised to make a potentially life-saving appointment with their GP by having a thorough follow up,” he stated.

Since the Unit has been in operation in various towns in regional Victoria, 3,489 checks have been done and from those checks 1,483 referrals to GPs have been necessary.

Lions Free Skin Check Van Torquay

Torquay Lions Club President Colin Bellis, Friend of Lions Gail Roche, check in Rod Joyce from Anglesea, and Lorraine Large from Jan Juc for free skin checks at the Lions Skin Check and Awareness Mobile Unit.

“We all need to be concerned about skin cancer, and anyone showing signs of skin changes should have them checked by health professionals.

“Our Lions Mobile Unit is hard-pressed to meet the need in regional Victoria, but we are aiming to bring the mobile unit back to Torquay as soon as we are able,” Lion Colin said.

The van was at Wurdi Baierr Stadium, Torquay on Friday, July 1st and Saturday, July 2nd.

Locals who had made appointments were checked by trained and certificated volunteers.

The Lions team pointed out that many people told them it was a wonderful initiative of Lions.

Skin Check Van

Colin Large from Jan Juc chats with Torquay Lions Club President Colin Bellis, while waiting for his free skin check.

“It’s been great to provide people with valuable and timely data about skin care and self-checking techniques. Just having the Unit here in Torquay has helped raise the community’s awareness,” Lion Colin said.

“It is well-known Australia has one of the highest rates of skin cancer in the world.

“Lions Clubs in Victoria and Southern NSW are working hard to reduce that level and its impact on families, but every one of the Surf Coast needs to take action”, Lion Colin concluded.

Interested in getting involved where it matters?

Click here to find out how you can help the Lions V Districts Cancer Foundation make a real and lasting difference in people’s lives.

Lions are there every step of the way in Flood Recovery

Lions Australia is celebrating our 75th Anniversary in September this year and the theme of “always” being there for the community could not be more relevant.

A key focus for Lions’ 1200 plus clubs in recent months has been supporting flood-affected communities in NSW and QLD.

With flood waters still rising in parts of NSW this week, Lions volunteers are assuring communities they will be there every step of the way in coming months and years as they recover and rebuild.

“At Lions we know the road to recovery is a long one after a disaster. Our volunteers are still going above and beyond to help communities rebuild after the devastating bushfires of 2019/2020 and we will see the same with flood affected communities in NSW and QLD,” says Lions Australia CEO Rob Oerlemans.

“Over the past three months, the focus has been on providing emergency support to those who lost everything. During the floods, our volunteers on the ground were doing whatever they could to support their communities whether it was cooking for ADF personnel and volunteers, setting up free laundry and shower vans or simply lending a helping hand to someone in need,” adds Rob.

“The focus now is on helping people get back on their feet and helping the community rebuild. This will take years.”

Members of the Lions Club of Lennox Head providing food and drinks to flood-affected communities earlier this year

Local Lions Clubs on the ground are being supported by many Lions Clubs and Australians who have been fundraising for and supporting the Australian Lions Foundation National Disaster Appeal.

Over $1.3m has now been raised and is being quickly distributed to clubs on the ground in affected areas. Lions have been assisting with clean ups and purchasing and delivering items such as storage containers and gas cookers for people who have lost everything. Many local clubs are using the grant funds to purchase vouchers at local businesses for people in need to purchase fuel, food, water, cleaning products, bedding and other essential items.

Quotes from Lions Clubs on the ground:

We will keep going until we’re not needed anymore,” says Lismore Lions Club President Theo Beemster.

We have been reacting to immediate needs and will continue to do so, but our challenge will be to support our community in the months and years ahead. To do that we have to keep up our normal fundraising efforts, apply for grants and donations and on top of that take on flood recovery effort,” says Chris Stores, Lennox Heads Lions Club.

Every dollar raised in the Australian Lions Foundation National Disaster Appeal is being sent directly to local Lions Clubs to provide emergency support to those in need and help the community rebuild.

Lions have been providing emergency support to Australian communities for decades. Over $4.6 million was raised and distributed in the recent Australian Lions Foundation National Bushfire Appeal and $1.9 million was raised and distributed to Flood Support last year.

Anyone looking to make a donation and support those affected by the floods can do so through their local Lions Club or through donating directly to Australian Lions Foundation.

To make a donation click here.

All donations over $2 are tax deductible.

Lions Hit the Catwalk for a Good Cause

Members of Adamstown Lions Club have scrubbed up nicely to raise much needed funds for the Australian Lions Foundation’s Flood Appeal.

Last year, Lion Judith Mulhearn suggested hosting a fashion show fundraiser at the Club’s board meeting after reading stories about homelessness and domestic violence in the local papers.

2021’s inaugural fashion show supported Jenny’s Place, a Newcastle-based organisation supporting women and children who are experiencing domestic violence and/or homelessness.

“It went so well, we decided to do it again,” said Mulhearn.

This year’s event was held in mid-June and saw Lions modelling ponchos, blazers and bowties as attendees drank champagne and enjoyed cake.

A Lion modelling in the fashion parade

 

“We had a mix of our club members and their friends, members of the public and members of other Lions Clubs in attendance,” said Mulhearn.

With the support of local businesses, who donated vouchers and goods for raffles and lucky door prizes, the Club was able to raise $4,500.

This money will go towards supporting those affected by the devastating floods in Southern Queensland and Northern New South Wales.

The Club will next be hosting a Spring fashion show in September.

You can keep up to date with Adamstown Lions Club here.

Donvale Lions Club Supports Local School Students

For many families in Australia, sending children to school camp is a luxury that they simply cannot afford.

Donvale Lions Club has partnered with 4 local schools to ensure that children don’t miss out on the opportunity to experience all that school camps have to offer.

For a child to attend, it typically costs between $200 and $300, depending on their age, meaning that many children go without.

Since becoming involved with LCIF’s Peace Poster initiative approximately 15 years ago, the Club has built strong relationships with the schools in the local community.

It was through regular contact with these schools that the Club learned of the hardships faced by many families in their area.

 

 

 

 

Leni Moodie of Donvale Lions Club said that members of the Club remembered their own experiences at school camp fondly and felt compelled to support the children unable to attend.

“We simply couldn’t bear the thought of a kid not attending school camp and being singled out and staying behind,” said Moodie.

Donvale Lions Club typically supports 3 to 6 children at any given time, meaning that fundraising is particularly important.

Whilst many of us use Saturday mornings to sleep in, members of Donvale Lions Club operate a weekly barbeque at their local shopping centre. To supplement these donations, the Club runs a Trash and Treasure market and participate in other fundraisers to ensure a steady flow of funds to support the local children.

Moodie says that she “wouldn’t have it any other way”.

School camps, aside from being fun, promote independence, foster the development of new skills and encourage social interaction.

In 2019, the Victorian Government also recognised the importance of making school camps accessible to all children by introducing the Camps, Sports and Excursions Fund. This Government initiative hoped to alleviate the financial burden of school camps, much like the Lions Club of Donvale.

“The Lions Club of Donvale is not very large, but what we do get involved in, we give it our best!”

You can find out more about Donvale Lions Club’s initiative here.

Valentine Lions Club Wins Top Club Service Project Award

The Lions Club of Valentine refer to themselves as ‘the Club with the big heart” and it couldn’t be more true. At our recent Mini Convention in Melbourne, the Club was awarded the Top Club Service Project for their ongoing commitment to supporting their local community.

Stemming from a partnership with a local not-for-profit, Valentine Lions Club has directly helped over 2250 people in the community since 2021.

The Club has joined forces with Survivors R Us, a local organisation that directly supports those experiencing homelessness, domestic violence, and unemployment.

Amidst yet another Covid-19 outbreak in 2021, Lions banded together to care for their community and support its vulnerable members, whilst lifting the profile of Lions and their commitment to serving others.

“The members of the Lions Club of Valentine have been super enthusiastic about our involvement with this project. It has invigorated our Club and given it a real focus during the second year of the Covid pandemic,” said Vice President Dawn Lambert.

Valentine Lions cooking a weekly breakfast at Survivors R Us

Each week since July 2021, Lions have cooked a hot, hearty breakfast available to anyone who needs it. But the Club’s support of the community extends well beyond the weekly breakfast.

With the help of grants from the NSW Government totalling over $32,000, Valentine Lions Club has put together 195 food hampers, 195 Christmas hampers, 405 toy packs, 152 ‘Back to School’ backpacks, and 576 dignity care packs for people of all ages. All of these were distributed to disadvantaged members of their local community, in partnership with Survivors R Us.

In addition to accumulating over 900 hours of work on this project, the Club nominated Survivors R Us as the sole beneficiary of the $6,000 raised during their annual Christmas raffle to assist with their continuing work.

Valentine Lions presenting Maria Martin, founder of Survivors R Us, with the proceeds from their Christmas raffle

Valentine Lions Club’s ‘Caring for the Community’ project is ongoing and continues to uplift those in their community. Yet again proving that where there’s a need, there’s a Lion.

To learn more about Valentine Lions Club’s ongoing project, click here.