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.”
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.