Learning about Lions
Members of Embleton WI ventured on a very wet Tuesday afternoon to Creighton Hall for their April meeting. They were welcomed by president Mrs Ham.
A reminder was made of the AGM resolutions to be discussed in May. Arrangements for dominoes at Stannington, a royal birthday at Belford and a quiz at Howick were confirmed. A report on the spring council meeting and other matters were deferred to the next meeting.
Business over, Joan Littler introduced Richard Hall, of Alnwick Lions, as speaker.
Richard, a member of the Lions for 35 years, gave an interesting insight to the history and activities of the organisation, which manages to mix fund-raising with light-hearted moments.
The International Association of Lions Clubs arose out of a meeting in Chicago in 1917 when Melvin Jones got businessmen together with the aim of helping the community without any financial benefit to the members.
In 1925 Helen Keller addressed a Lions’ convention and challenged them to become “knights of the blind in the crusade against darkness”. In 1990 the most progressive sight preservation effort, Sightfirst, was launch. As a result, 600,000 free glaucoma screenings and 25,000 corneal transplants are possible each year. The Lions support many eye services and collect unwanted spectacles for distribution in developing countries.
In addition to the emphasis on sight, the Lions have bonds with the United Nation and are committed to providing services for youth.
In Alnwick the bookshop is the main force behind the fund-raising, money going to LCIF headquarters, some of which will be available for worldwide disaster appeals. Other funding ventures include car boot sales, coffee mornings, casino nights and variety shows.
In the past the Lions have played a large part in events such as Alnwick Fair, the Music Festival and Food Festival. They also contribute to the team who produce tapes for the blind, and are launching an emergency card system.
They have contributed to funds during the flooding of Rothbury, Morpeth, and more recently, the Lake District.
Many local villages and societies, the young and old, have benefited from the Lions’ fund-raising.
Members were reminded of the Mile of Bras a few years go when the Palliative Care unit at Alnwick hospital was the recipient of a healthy cheque.
At the end of an absorbing talk a vote of thanks was given by Sue Black.
Tea and biscuits gave an opportunity for members to socialise, before Tony Dunn, a personal trainer, gave everyone a brief insight into his fitness classes held in Rock.
Competition winners for Recollections of Queen Elizabeth II were: 1 Joan Little; 2 Lynne Harris; 3 Joan Littler. The raffle winner was Adaline Jones.