A Trek around the Track Walking in silence on their first lap around the track on the grounds of Lamar University in Beaumont, more than 200 people raised $10,000 for the Texas Lions Camp. They quietly circled the track to remind people that diabetes is a silent killer, explains Robert Blackburn, Strides Walk co-chair and a member of the Beaumont Breakfast Lions Club. Lions dedicated the second lap in honor of all veterans and those currently in the military. “Most of the participants made four to 12 laps while some made many more. One guy did 25 laps. The track is a little more than a half-mile around and it took around 3 minutes to make a full lap. The youngest were in strollers and walkers ranged from ages 5 to 72,” says Blackburn. Lions from 18 clubs in District 2 S1 in southeast Texas promoted diabetes awareness at the track and medical professionals were present to answer questions and perform health screenings. Raised funds helped enhance the summer camp and educational programs for children with diabetes Smile Boxes Keep Kids Happy The Grapevine Lions Club in Texas may be considered small with only 13 members, but the club’s commitment to growing and helping others remains strong. “We’re trying to rekindle and be attractive as a service organization to prospective members,” says Laura Higgs. “I started researching local charitable organizations and found Emily’s Smile Boxes (www.emilyssmileboxes.com) and thought the concept was wonderful.” Emily Olson is a young Texas girl whose baby brother Jude suffered a massive brain bleed in utero. Jude is unable to walk, talk, is legally blind and tubefed, and has been hospitalized on and off since being born in 2008. Emily, 10 years old when Jude was born, devised a clever box filled with fun activities to keep kids amused and occupied during tedious hours spent at medical centers. Among the items Lions purchase are crayons, coloring books, activity pads, puzzles, small stuffed animals, beanie babies, favorite children’s card games like Go Fish and Old Maid and sticker sets. In the four years since the project began, more than 5,000 boxes have been distributed to children. Smile boxes are now donated to children’s hospitals, orphanages, shelters and pediatric urgent care centers. Higgs says each box the Grapevine Lions Club completes for donation bears a Lions sticker.
Published by International Association of Lions Clubs . View All Articles.
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