Anne Ford 2014-11-12 00:35:18
Passaic-Clifton Lions Club, New Jersey Age 34 | Academic Administrator My grandfather, Cristobal, was a lawyer. He was a person who, if somebody came to him and needed help—if they needed money or whatever—he would not turn any of them away. We lived in the Dominican Republic, and he always showed me that even though we didn’t have that much, there were other people that had even less than us. Back then there was a lot of economic conflict because the economy was really bad. The peso had gone down, and there was a lot of inflation. So if we could help someone in any way, we would. I was 3 years old when I got involved with Lionism. My grandfather chartered a new club [the Santo Domingo Miraflores Lions] in 1983, and my grandmother has pictures of me from the night of the charter. That started my whole Lions life, really. From there I became a Cub. I used to attend all the events with my grandfather, even the district meetings. I went to my first international convention with him when I was 9—this little kid, always in the middle of all the adults. People used to say, “Here comes Cristobal and his tail” because I was always with him. My club now, we help with a camp for blind children. We try to be there when they go for lunch or dinner just to mingle with them and make them feel comfortable. We also go to schools and read to children between kindergarten and first grade. We support bigscale projects too, but by doing these little projects, we can see the kids laughing. Or we can see how they react when we do something for them. You can always send donations instead, but if you do that, you don’t actually see that something is being done. This way, you can really see that what you’re doing means something. My grandfather passed away in 1998. When I first became a Lion, I joined his club, because I had promised him I would when I was old enough. My grandmother was my sponsor. It was a happy day, but it was a sad day also because he had passed away. He showed me so much, and I try to continue what he started.
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