64 Years Strong!

Many gathered at the Stephenville Lions Club, Tuesday, April 11, 2017 to celebrate the momentous occasion, rarely to many get to celebrate. 64 Years Strong!  One has to wonder if, when a few men gathered together back in 1952 to discuss the possibility of a Lions Club in the Stephenville area, if any believed it could be possible that 64 years later the Stephenville Lions Club would be still going strong and improving the lives of those in the local area and beyond?  

Well that is just the case! Celebrating the achievements and the Lions movement with both the Stephenville Lions and Lioness Clubs were over 60 members, family members, community supporters and district officers. 

A night of fun, food and fellowship…such as is the life of a Stephenville Lion. Led by MC Lion Dawn Barrett the evening unfolded with laughter and congratulations all around. Tail Twister Lion Larry Wilcox, as usual, entertained the group with his wit and humourous banter, to only escalate the laughter when joined by Lion Dawn.

Congratulations and greetings were brought from the Town of Stephenville by Councillor Don Gibbons. He spoke how the Lions have played a major role in the Town of Stephenville. From their involvement in the BSG Sick Children’s Foundation Curling Bonspiel, Block the Bus to the Sir Thomas Roddick Hospital Foundation and all between. “We applaud every single Lion and Lioness for everything they do. It is an honour to stand in the Lions Clu on this 64th and 63rd anniversary.” 

Lion Winston Kennedy and Lion Patricia Wilcox led the others in raising their glass to salute the Charter members of both clubs: Lion Eric Lomond (St. George’s 1965), Lion Harold Wells (Stephenville Crossing, 1956) and Lioness Minette Shave (Stephenville, 1953) for their vision and continuous dedication to the Lion family. Lioness Minette Shave thanked everyone, adding “I can’t believe I’ve been in this long.

Special Guest speaker District Governor Valerie Clarke began by congratulating the Stephenville Lions Club on continuing to be active in their community, also bringing greeting from International President Bob Corlew and his wife Diane. She spoke about the long list of service the Lions contribute and offer the people of this area, presenting her district banner to King Lion Henry and thanking him for his continuous leadership. 

Her enthusiasm and energy was contagious as she pointed out her three main goals for her year as District Governor, and how the Stephenville Lions Club played a major role in achieving those goals. As she prepared to induct four new members, she thanked the club “for doing your share to increase membership,” stating that presently, District N-3 is leading the country in membership growth. “Inductions are the best part of being a DG” she added. 

Making an oath to do their part in continuing the Stephenville Lions Club legacy of serving their community were new Lions: Sharlett Samms, Charity McNabb, Karen Young and Laurie Hynes. 

While all Lions contribute to their club and the betterment of their community, sometimes, one comes along that makes such an impact on their fellow Lions lives, they can’t be forgotten even after they’ve passed. One such Lion for the Stephenville Club was Lion Sam Shea. Known for his banter, humour and wit, MC Lion Dawn Barrett paid a special tribute to Lion Sam by sharing his personal pin collection with the Lion members. “Lion Sam put alot of hard work into the Lions Club, but he also believed it is about having fun and giving.”  Marg Shea, Lion Sam’s wife thanked everyone for continuing to remember Sam and for including her in their celebration.  Lion Dave Rex stood and continued the honour by giving a short recitation on Sam Shea. 

To add to the cause of celebration, Lion Erle Barrett stood and thanked Lion Derrik McKay and all Lions involved in the Indian Head Coop/Stephenville Lions Club 50/50 Charity Program. He went on to add that due to this partnership, the program has donated over $67,000 to local groups, clubs and organizations to continue paying it forward.

64 years strong and many more to go! What fun we will have, what good we will do! Who wouldn’t want to be a part of something this good? How about you? Join us!

Where there’s a need, there’s a Lion!

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GLT/GMT Leadership Training

“What we do for ourselves dies with us. What we do for others and the world remains and is immortal.”-Albert Pine.  This could easily be the motto of the Lions Club, but made simple…”We Serve.”

27 Lions gathered at the Lion Max Simms Memorial Camp, for a weekend of camaraderie, training and motivation. Representatives from both Districts N-3 and N-4 gathered together during the GLT/GMT Leadership Training, April 7-9, 2017. 

District N-3 Global Leadership Team Chair, Lion Penny Pike and her GLT are to be commended on organizing a fun-filled learning camp. With special guest trainers, Past District Governor (PDG) OJ Wilura and Past International Director (PID) Carl Young, both from clubs in Ontario, taking the lead on information sharing, the group was well-informed and inspired on how to take Lionism into the next 100 years, or at least 5 years. 

PDG OJ congratulated all in attendance on being Lions during the centennial year, and the honour that is bestowed on us all. He spoke how Lions Club International (LCI) plans to move forward and its goal to serve 200 million people by 2021. LCI Forward is a 5 year strategic plan to enhance service impact and focus; to reshape public opinion and improve visibility; to pursue club, district and organizational excellence; and to improve membership value and reach new markets. 

Just how we will do this takes quality leadership, with Lions taking pride in the work that we do. Leaders who will move Lionism forward using innovative products, ensuring their clubs provide excellence and quality initiative in their local communities, by recruiting and retaining enthusiastic and community-minded volunteers. 

During this leadership training, PDG OJ and PID Carl highlighted the elements of a successful club. They being:

  1. Conduct service projects that are meaningful
  2. Achieve net growth
  3. Offer effective communication
  4. Hold regular and positive meetings
  5. Club officers that participate in zone and district meetings/training

During large group discussion, many Lions spoke regarding challenges and solutions when it comes to growing club membership. PID Carl and PDG OJ shared how their past and current clubs also approach the topic of membership in a world where the face of volunteers are aging. Reminding us each of the simplest approach…ASK 1!

When the training day ended, the fun began…ok, it was a constant fun time, but as Newfoundlanders, we had to show our CFAs (Come From Aways) just how a kitchen party looks; of course this is after they have become honorary Newfoundlanders…any reason for a Screech-in. hey by’s. There was lots of drink free and be merry happening when the guitars were pulled out. Lyrical voices could be heard throughout the camp into the wee hours of the morning, singing many to sleep while counting Lions in their heads.

From powerpoints, to Lions Jeopardy, songs to laughter, strangers to friends, all who attended this training walked away feeling rejuvenated, armed with knowledge on moving Lions forward and counting down the days until we all meet again..(which for many is two weeks away at the District N-3 Spring Convention…) oh what a time!

Lions…a great family to be a part of!

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