Webinar:  Effective Club MeetingsAre you interested in the coordination and management of productive Lions meetings? Join your fellow Lions for the always popular Effective Club Meetings webinar.  We will review the basics of good meeting management including:
meeting planning,
agenda preparation,
post-meeting evaluation and
essential facilitation skills.
This training will give you the practical tools and strategies to conduct efficient meetings and therefore increase club effectiveness and member satisfaction.  And, the skills and tools discussed apply to a Lions meeting at any level–club, district, zone, or region.  So, therefore, the Effective Meetings webinar is intended for any Lion who attends, or conducts, a Lions meeting—all of us!
Register today for one of the time slots below:
Wednesday, 10/1/14, 12:00pm, CDT
Friday, 10/10/14, 7:00pm, CDT
Webinar: Effective Club Meetings

Are you interested in the coordination and management of productive Lions meetings? Join your fellow Lions for the always popular Effective Club Meetings webinar.  We will review the basics of good meeting management including:

  • meeting planning,
  • agenda preparation,
  • post-meeting evaluation and
  • essential facilitation skills.

This training will give you the practical tools and strategies to conduct efficient meetings and therefore increase club effectiveness and member satisfaction.  And, the skills and tools discussed apply to a Lions meeting at any level–club, district, zone, or region.  So, therefore, the Effective Meetings webinar is intended for any Lion who attends, or conducts, a Lions meeting—all of us!

Register today for one of the time slots below:

Making “Mission: Inclusion” a Success in Australia

logoHA_Opening_Eyes_LCI-Mark_CMYKLions can make a big difference in the lives of people with intellectual disabilities. In Australia, the Inner Sydney West Special Olympics Lions Club is exemplifying the partnership between Lions Clubs International Foundation (LCIF)  and Special Olympics.

LCIF has been partnering with Special Olympics since 2001 through the Special Olympics-Lions Clubs International Opening Eyes vision screening program. Now, the partnership’s efforts are having a much wider reach.

Called “Mission: Inclusion,” the partnership expansion is creating leadership opportunities for Special Olympics athletes, increasing the health work of Special Olympics, and conducting outreach to families for additional support. Both organizations  can now reach more young people through inclusive sports and advocacy programs in an effort to achieve full acceptance and inclusion of people with intellectual disabilities in their communities.

Elvie Jamie Elvie of the Inner Sydney West Special Olympics Lions Club of Australia

Athletes and Lions club members like Jamie Elvie know the true value of inclusion:

“Through Lions, [athletes] will develop skills in organization, goal setting and managing their time. Most importantly, though, they will have the pleasure of helping others. Rather than being the recipient of charity they will be able to dispense it and discover the rewards of knowing that you are contributing to your community,” said Elvie.

Elvie joined the Inner Sydney West Special Olympics Lions Club of Australia four years ago. He has been a member of Special Olympics since 2009: first as an athlete in several sports, and now through managing athletes at ten-pin bowling.

“I was already involved with the local Special Olympics and it was a logical move to join a Lions club that had a focus on helping Special Olympics,” said Elvie.

Through this specialty club, a variety of Lions’ projects support people in need both locally and globally. At the same time, the club focuses on Special Olympics on the regional and national levels. This focus gives Elvie and other Special Olympic members a chance to work with their fellow Lions on what the Special Olympic athletes need, as well as address the community on Lions clubs and Special Olympics, encouraging support for both.

“Many of the club members are also long-term members of Special Olympics, either as athletes or as parents/care-givers of athletes and consequently have strong understanding of how Special Olympics operates and a keen interest in seeing the organization well supported,” said Elvie.

Tony Moore with LCIF Chairperson Palmer Inner Sydney West Special Olympics Lions Club President Tony Moore (far right) with LCIF Chairperson Barry Palmer, Anne Palmer, and fellow Lions

Tony Moore, president of the Inner Sydney West Special Olympics Lions Club, is grateful for how the members contribute to the club’s activities.

“There is no difference between Special Olympic athlete members and other members. The only distinction is that they have unique insights into Special Olympics and the needs of athletes which, as a club, we tap into,” said Moore.

Formed in 2009, the Inner Sydney West Special Olympics Lions Club of Australia truly exemplifies Mission: Inclusion.

“The objective is to provide developmental opportunities for the athletes and to ensure that the athletes are represented and have a voice in decision making,” said Moore. “From experience we know the value athletes bring to an organization, whether through their various skills or their capacity to present to the public or through their enormous enthusiasm and commitment.”

For more information about special interest clubs for Special Olympics, visit the Lions Clubs International website. Visit the Special Olympics website to learn more about the organization and its efforts.

2015 Environmental Photo ContestThe Environmental Photo Contest is a way for Lions around the world to share their pictures that capture the awe-inspiring magnificence that is found in nature. These photos can fall under any one of the following five categories:
Animal Life
Plant Life
Urban or Natural Landscapes
Weather Phenomenon
Special theme –Lions’ Pride in our Environment: Capturing the magnificent beauty and grandeur of our natural environment
Clubs are encouraged to hold their local Environmental Photo Contest and submit the “Best of Show” photo to their district office. Lions Districts need to send their winning photo to their Multiple Districts by January 15, 2015. Multiple Districts will then choose their winning photo, which they must submit to Lions Headquarters in Oakbrook, IL by March 1, 2015 along with a Multiple District Entry Form.
 “Will my photo count?” In order for your photo to be eligible for the Environmental Photo Contest, your photo needs to follow these rules:
Photo must have been taken by a Lions club member
Must be an original, unaltered photo
May be submitted in black-and-white or color
Photos are depictions of the environment –please, do not include people.
We ask that you only send one photo entry per Multiple District. We will not accept multiple entries. 
Feel free to contact us with any questions.
2015 Environmental Photo Contest

The Environmental Photo Contest is a way for Lions around the world to share their pictures that capture the awe-inspiring magnificence that is found in nature. These photos can fall under any one of the following five categories:

  • Animal Life
  • Plant Life
  • Urban or Natural Landscapes
  • Weather Phenomenon
  • Special theme –Lions’ Pride in our Environment: Capturing the magnificent beauty and grandeur of our natural environment

Clubs are encouraged to hold their local Environmental Photo Contest and submit the “Best of Show” photo to their district office. Lions Districts need to send their winning photo to their Multiple Districts by January 15, 2015. Multiple Districts will then choose their winning photo, which they must submit to Lions Headquarters in Oakbrook, IL by March 1, 2015 along with a Multiple District Entry Form.

“Will my photo count?” In order for your photo to be eligible for the Environmental Photo Contest, your photo needs to follow these rules:

  • Photo must have been taken by a Lions club member
  • Must be an original, unaltered photo
  • May be submitted in black-and-white or color
  • Photos are depictions of the environment –please, do not include people.

We ask that you only send one photo entry per Multiple District. We will not accept multiple entries.

Feel free to contact us with any questions.

LQ: Lions Multi-Generation House

Multi-Generation houses, located in communities around Germany, offer many different activities to bring children, adults and seniors together in support of one another. The Troisdorf Lions Club in Germany got involved with their local Multi-Generation house, which helps support the city’s large immigrant population. Learning a second language can be difficult, but with the help of the Troisdorf Lions, immigrant women are learning how to read and write German –helping them better integrate into the community.

Watch the clip above to see how the Troisdorf Lions Club is helping immigrants and children feel at home in the local culture. You can view the entire July Lions Quarterly on the Lions News Network.

Deadline for Peace Poster Contest KitsThe theme for the 2014-15 Peace Poster Contest is “Peace, Love and Understanding.” Students ages 11, 12 and 13 are eligible to participate. If you are interested in sponsoring the Lions International Peace Poster Contest, the deadline to order a kit is October 1st. These kits are available in all 11 of our official languages.
Lions all over the world are working towards a common goal –serving 100 million people by 2017 as part of the Centennial Service Challenge. The Peace Poster Contest falls under the Global Service Action Campaign of Engaging Our Youth. In order for your service to count towards this goal, record your activity on MyLCI. You can then post your activity on Facebook and other social media sites by using the hashtag #LIONS100 so that other clubs can see how you’re making an impact.
Deadline for Peace Poster Contest Kits

The theme for the 2014-15 Peace Poster Contest is “Peace, Love and Understanding.” Students ages 11, 12 and 13 are eligible to participate. If you are interested in sponsoring the Lions International Peace Poster Contest, the deadline to order a kit is October 1st. These kits are available in all 11 of our official languages.

Lions all over the world are working towards a common goal –serving 100 million people by 2017 as part of the Centennial Service Challenge. The Peace Poster Contest falls under the Global Service Action Campaign of Engaging Our Youth. In order for your service to count towards this goal, record your activity on MyLCI. You can then post your activity on Facebook and other social media sites by using the hashtag #LIONS100 so that other clubs can see how you’re making an impact.

Lions in Turkey Do Crafts with KidsThe Izmir Turk Cyber Lions Club in D118-R Turkey organized “Days of Creativity.” During the month of August, the Lions held a two day event doing crafts with a group of six 10-year-old children. Under the theme of “protecting the environment, nature and animals” the children created crowns, cars and other toys out of used paper towel rolls, and decorated reusable cloth tote bags. At the end of the day, the children received certificates to take home with them.
Engaging Our Youth projects are part of the Centennial Service Challenge, in which Lions are encouraged to serve 100 million people by 2017. Record your activities through MyLCI and share your service activity on Facebook and other social media sites. By using the hashtag #LIONS100, you allow clubs all over the world to see how you are making a difference.


How are you engaging youth in your community?  
Lions in Turkey Do Crafts with Kids

The Izmir Turk Cyber Lions Club in D118-R Turkey organized “Days of Creativity.” During the month of August, the Lions held a two day event doing crafts with a group of six 10-year-old children. Under the theme of “protecting the environment, nature and animals” the children created crowns, cars and other toys out of used paper towel rolls, and decorated reusable cloth tote bags. At the end of the day, the children received certificates to take home with them.

Engaging Our Youth projects are part of the Centennial Service Challenge, in which Lions are encouraged to serve 100 million people by 2017. Record your activities through MyLCI and share your service activity on Facebook and other social media sites. By using the hashtag #LIONS100, you allow clubs all over the world to see how you are making a difference.

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How are you engaging youth in your community?  

Lions’ Blind Sailing ChampionshipOur guest post today was an article posted in the Wisconsin LION magazine, “Why Me?” by Lion BJ Blahmik. He tells his experience being visually impaired and how he did the one thing he thought he never could do … sailing. The Lions of Wisconsin are sponsoring the World Championship of Blind Sailing in Sheboygan on September 9th-14th. Check out the Wisconsin Lion’s Facebook page or the Sailing Education Association of Sheboygan’s Facebook page for updates on the events.

My name is BJ Blahnik and I am visually impaired from Retinitis Pigmentosa. I still have some vision, however it is very limited. The community would consider me visually impaired, but I consider myself visually challenged. As my sight diminished, I was forced to make a life change and turn in my driver’s license when I was 23. I lost all sense of independence which was very frustrating. I gained a lot of that independence back when I received my first Leader Dog in 2008. This was a major life change and it pointed my outlook on life in the right direction. My life is now better because of Leader Dogs for the Blind.
Knowing that Leader Dogs for the Blind was founded by a service organization called Lions Clubs, I knew I wanted to be involved. Becoming a Lion and being a part of an organization that focuses on the blind and visually impaired, as well as many other community projects on a local, State and International level we learn how good it is to serve those in need. Those experiences helped me become a better person and changed my life entirely.
Many of those personal life changes allowed me to find that special someone, get married and have a family. Because of this I moved to Sheboygan, Wisconsin. I grew up around dairy farming and rarely had the opportunity to be able to do something like being on the water. By having my new family and now living next to such a beautiful scene such as Lake Michigan, I knew I wanted to take advantage of this. I went sailing for the first time a while ago and really enjoyed the experience. The first thing which came to mind was how would I ever be able to do something like this, therefore I let that desire wash away.
I went sailing again because I heard about the World Championship of Blind Match Sailing and realized that sailing for someone like me is possible. I took a lesson on how to sail and it was very overwhelming at first. After working with my instructor, we broke the training down into very small pieces of information. Once we got out of the harbor and onto the lake, the first thing we talked about was how do I learn. With discussion going back and forth we discovered I needed to just start sailing and ask questions as we went along. I was very nervous at first, but thanks to the instructor’s calming attitude, I began to feel comfortable pretty quickly.
After a few tips on a very basic level, we learned we should start with sound. When I heard the main sail start to flutter, I knew to pull the tiller towards me a little to maintain a straight line. Quickly I began to understand the wind and was reacting to the sail as soon as it happened. Eventually I was able to hear the jib flutter, before the main sail, which allowed me to anticipate the movement. By just managing these couple sounds my instructor went silent and allowed me to sail by myself.
In no time at all, I was driving something, a sailboat, all by myself for the first time in 12 years! I felt like I had another chapter of independence, one which I thought I would never have again. I was so inspired, I felt in charge and I thought to myself, “Why not me?”
Hearing about the International blind sailors coming to Sheboygan, I knew I could do this, too. With this inspiration, and I am pleased to say I am receiving sailing lessons and hope to someday be like those sailors who do not see themselves as impaired, rather they all say, “Why not me?”.
Lions’ Blind Sailing Championship

Our guest post today was an article posted in the Wisconsin LION magazine, “Why Me?” by Lion BJ Blahmik. He tells his experience being visually impaired and how he did the one thing he thought he never could do … sailing. The Lions of Wisconsin are sponsoring the World Championship of Blind Sailing in Sheboygan on September 9th-14th. Check out the Wisconsin Lion’s Facebook page or the Sailing Education Association of Sheboygan’s Facebook page for updates on the events.

My name is BJ Blahnik and I am visually impaired from Retinitis Pigmentosa. I still have some vision, however it is very limited. The community would consider me visually impaired, but I consider myself visually challenged. As my sight diminished, I was forced to make a life change and turn in my driver’s license when I was 23. I lost all sense of independence which was very frustrating. I gained a lot of that independence back when I received my first Leader Dog in 2008. This was a major life change and it pointed my outlook on life in the right direction. My life is now better because of Leader Dogs for the Blind.

Knowing that Leader Dogs for the Blind was founded by a service organization called Lions Clubs, I knew I wanted to be involved. Becoming a Lion and being a part of an organization that focuses on the blind and visually impaired, as well as many other community projects on a local, State and International level we learn how good it is to serve those in need. Those experiences helped me become a better person and changed my life entirely.

Many of those personal life changes allowed me to find that special someone, get married and have a family. Because of this I moved to Sheboygan, Wisconsin. I grew up around dairy farming and rarely had the opportunity to be able to do something like being on the water. By having my new family and now living next to such a beautiful scene such as Lake Michigan, I knew I wanted to take advantage of this. I went sailing for the first time a while ago and really enjoyed the experience. The first thing which came to mind was how would I ever be able to do something like this, therefore I let that desire wash away.

I went sailing again because I heard about the World Championship of Blind Match Sailing and realized that sailing for someone like me is possible. I took a lesson on how to sail and it was very overwhelming at first. After working with my instructor, we broke the training down into very small pieces of information. Once we got out of the harbor and onto the lake, the first thing we talked about was how do I learn. With discussion going back and forth we discovered I needed to just start sailing and ask questions as we went along. I was very nervous at first, but thanks to the instructor’s calming attitude, I began to feel comfortable pretty quickly.
After a few tips on a very basic level, we learned we should start with sound. When I heard the main sail start to flutter, I knew to pull the tiller towards me a little to maintain a straight line. Quickly I began to understand the wind and was reacting to the sail as soon as it happened. Eventually I was able to hear the jib flutter, before the main sail, which allowed me to anticipate the movement. By just managing these couple sounds my instructor went silent and allowed me to sail by myself.

In no time at all, I was driving something, a sailboat, all by myself for the first time in 12 years! I felt like I had another chapter of independence, one which I thought I would never have again. I was so inspired, I felt in charge and I thought to myself, “Why not me?”

Hearing about the International blind sailors coming to Sheboygan, I knew I could do this, too. With this inspiration, and I am pleased to say I am receiving sailing lessons and hope to someday be like those sailors who do not see themselves as impaired, rather they all say, “Why not me?”.

LCIF Provides Emergency Grants in August 2014

LCIF logoWhen natural disasters strike, Lions are there to offer help and support. In times of need, Lions are able to rely on disaster relief grants and funds from Lions Clubs International Foundation (LCIF).

In August 2014, LCIF provided 22 emergency grants totaling US$150,000. These grants are helping meet immediate needs in:

Nepal, District 325-A2
$10,000 for landslide relief

India, District 317-C
$5,000 for flood relief

India, District 322-C4
$5,000 for flood relief

India, District 322-C5
$5,000 for flood relief

India, District 318-C
$5,000 for flood relief

Philippines, District 301-D1
$5,000 for typhoon relief

India, District 323-C
$5,000 for flood relief

United States, Arkansas, District 7-I
$10,000 for disaster preparedness

United States, Kansas, District 17-N
$10,000 for disaster preparedness

India, District 317-D
$5,000 for flood relief

Japan, District 335-C
$10,000 for flood relief

Japan, District 336-D
$10,000 for flood relief

Nepal, District 325-B2
$5,000 for flood relief

Bangladesh, District 315-B4
$5,000 for flood relief

India, District 321-B1
$5,000 for flood relief

Japan, District 335-A
$10,000 for flood relief

Thailand, District 310-A2
$10,000 for flood relief

India, District 322-E
$5,000 for flood relief

India, District 318-A
$5,000 for flood relief

Bangladesh, District 315-A1
$5,000 for flood relief

Bangladesh, District 315-B1
$5,000 for flood relief

Republic of Korea, District 355-A
$10,000 for flood relief

* Emergency grants listed by date approved.

At the heart of LCIF’s disaster relief programs are the individuals and families your donations reach. Learn more about grants recently awarded and the LCIF emergency grant program on the LCIF website. Or, you can learn about making a donation to assist with global disaster relief efforts.

Today is International Literacy Day Two years ago, the Reading Action Program began. This program is a 10-year commitment to increase reading and literacy rates all over the world. Today, Lions have served over 17.5 million people through projects such as book donations, early reading intervention programs and more. In celebration of International Literacy Day, we are encouraging Lions to promote literacy during the month of September, as well as throughout the year.
Some project ideas your club can consider include:
Reading to children at a local library or after school program
Organizing a book exchange
Providing assistive devices to adults or children who have low vision
Supplying new parents with books for young children and including facts about the importance of early reading
You can even turn your Reading Action Program initiative into a Centennial Service Challenge project by engaging a Leo club or other youth in your community. Help reach our goal of serving 100 million people by 2017, and don’t forget to report your activity on MyLCI. Share your service activity on Facebook and other social media sites with the hashtag #LIONS100 so other clubs can see how you’re making an impact.
How is your club promoting literacy in your community?
Today is International Literacy Day

Two years ago, the Reading Action Program began. This program is a 10-year commitment to increase reading and literacy rates all over the world. Today, Lions have served over 17.5 million people through projects such as book donations, early reading intervention programs and more. In celebration of International Literacy Day, we are encouraging Lions to promote literacy during the month of September, as well as throughout the year.

Some project ideas your club can consider include:

  • Reading to children at a local library or after school program
  • Organizing a book exchange
  • Providing assistive devices to adults or children who have low vision
  • Supplying new parents with books for young children and including facts about the importance of early reading

You can even turn your Reading Action Program initiative into a Centennial Service Challenge project by engaging a Leo club or other youth in your community. Help reach our goal of serving 100 million people by 2017, and don’t forget to report your activity on MyLCI. Share your service activity on Facebook and other social media sites with the hashtag #LIONS100 so other clubs can see how you’re making an impact.

How is your club promoting literacy in your community?

Visit LCIF at the USA/Canada Forum!

USACANADA

Experience the impact of Lions Clubs International Foundation (LCIF) at this year’s USA/Canada Forum from September 11 through September 13 in San Juan, Puerto Rico. This year’s theme is “Building Leadership One Block at a Time.”

LCIF will have a booth where staff can answer questions regarding grant programs, the application process, and donations, as well as provide informational materials. Be sure to ask about the Lions Measles Initiative!

This year, there are several LCIF informational sessions:

→ On Friday, September 12, visit room 202 BC from 2:15 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. to learn about updates from LCIF, and how you and your club can make a difference.

→ On Saturday, September 13, Immediate Past International President and LCIF Chairperson Barry Palmer will host a seminar titled Immediate Past District Governors: Continue Making Your Dreams Come True. This seminar will be held in room 208 BC from 8:30 a.m. to 9:45 a.m.

→ Lions Quest connects the home, school and community. On Saturday, September 13, visit room 201 AB from 2:15 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. to learn about how Lions Quest reinforces positive values for students.

Forums provide for an exchange of information and ideas surrounding service activities and Lions’ projects while promoting the principles and objectives of Lions Clubs International and LCIF. All Lions in the constitutional area in which the forum is held are invited to participate.

You can read about LCIF’s activities at the Europa Forum in the upcoming weeks.