WIRFS LEADS WEBINARS International President Eberhard J. Wirfs recently led three Webinars on membership for district governor teams from dozens of nations. Wirfs shared positive membership results and heard the success stories of DG teams (district governor, two vice governors) and GMT (Global Membership Team) leaders. Altogether, 184 Lions from the United States, Canada, Japan and ISAAME (India, South Asia, Africa and the Middle East) participated. Wirfs encouraged Lions to further embrace his dual strategy of recruiting members/starting clubs and improving retention. He also reiterated his Move to Grow strategy. The low-cost Webinars, live presentations via the Internet, originated from LCI headquarters in Oak Brook, Illinois. A PRESIDENT, THEN A SENATOR The Republican who won the late Ted Kennedy’s Senate seat in Massachusetts is a longtime Lion. Sen. Scott Brown joined the Wrentham Lions Club in 1989 and served as president in 1995-96. Brown's win was particularly significant because it deprived Democrats of the crucial 60th Senate vote they need to pass the healthcare bill. A Massachusetts state senator, Brown found time in the waning days of his historic, come-from-behind campaign to attend a Lions Christmas event for senior citizens and a New Year’s Day run he began a few years ago. The Wrentham Lions Club is noteworthy because Helen Keller and teacher Anne Sullivan lived in Wrentham from 1904-1917. LIONS GET VISIBLE Two Lions clubs in Minnesota took a day to make sure the public knows what Lions do: they staged an exhibit of the most recent 25 merit award winners of the Peace Poster Contest and set up information booths on other projects in District 5 M9. The display at Parkers Prairie Event Center in January was a Lions in Sight initiative. International President Eberhard J. Wirfs asked clubs to publicize their service during the last two weeks of January. Numerous clubs worldwide responded by organizing screenings, doing other forms of service or setting up booths in public places. The Parkers Prairie and Parkers Prairie Pride clubs hosted the event in Minnesota. LIONS HONOREE KILLED IN HAITI A renowned Brazilian pediatrician who was awarded the 1997 Lions Humanitarian Award was among those who died in the Haiti earthquake. Dr. Zilda Arns Neumann, 75, was in Port-au- Prince to combat malnutrition among children. Augustin Soliva of Brazil, the 1996-97 international president, cited her work in helping millions of poor women and children with heathcare issues when she received the Lions award. She was the sister of Sao Paulo retired Catholic archbishop, Cardinal Paulo Evaristo Arns, who told reporters she “died a beautiful death because she died for a cause she always believed in.” JUSTIN GERALD STECH is the kind of Lion every club wants. After being invited to join the Cromwell-Kimmell Lions Club while still an active Leo, the 20-year-old from Kimmell, Indiana, became a member in March 2009. But don’t let his age fool you – Stech has volunteered in various capacities and visited parts of the world many may never see. Recently, Stech spent three weeks in Southeast Asia working with Destiny Rescue, an organization committed to saving girls from child prostitution. He went undercover to identify girls who wanted to leave the sex trade at brothels in Thailand. HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE YOUR CLUB: A fun-loving, but hardworking club. I've seen joy and fun in our members, no matter what the task or project is that we're working on. FAVORITE FOOD: Thai food. I love very spicy food, but Thai food is the best because it can be very hot and yet you can still taste all of the flavor of the food. Delicious! FAVORITE TELEVISION PROGRAM: The Office. I love comedy, and this show is non-stop. I feel like I know the characters well, and I look forward to it every week. It’s the only show I watch. THE LAST GREAT BOOK YOU READ: Saint Ben. It's my favorite book of all time and I read it quite often. I consider Ben and Jonathan to be good friends of mine at this point. FAVORITE PLACE TO VISIT: Queenstown, New Zealand. It's the most beautiful place you could ever experience, and the culture in the town is electric. Kayaking on the lakes there is phenomenal. I would go back in a heartbeat! WHY I BECAME A LION: I love the community of Lions. The reputation of integrity makes a huge difference to me as well. It's important to me that I'm involved with people and groups that have a positive reputation and that I know have integrity from the inside out. My local Lions invited me in when I was a Leo, which made a big impact on me. To be allowed to do projects with the Lions while I was still a teenager was really cool. I loved it! WHAT YOUR CLUB DOESN’T KNOW ABOUT ME: My life dream is to become a comedian. I usually don't bust out my stand-up routine at meetings. PROJECTS YOU’D LIKE TO SEE YOUR CLUB TAKE ON: Since I'm involved with Destiny Rescue, I would like to see my Lions join up with them at some level. I would also like to see Lions as a whole doing more to recruit Leos into the Lions club. We're losing so many potential members because they never get invited. WATCH LQ WELCOME TO THE CLUB! In the April edition of LQ—Lions Quarterly video magazine, see Lions hit a home run in Alabama with the Miracle League. Other stories focus on a healthcare initiative in Virginia, a drug rehabilitation center in Norway and literacy and vocational training for women and pre-school for their children in Morocco. View LQ online from the Lions News Network section of www.lionsclubs.org. A Podcast is also available to download from iTunes or watch LQ on YouTube. Justin Stech receives the Distinguished Hoosier CLUB OF THE MONTH LIONS CLUB OF SAVANNAH, GEORGIA CLUB TITLE: Lions Club of Savannah YEAR FOUNDED: 1922 COMMUNITY SERVED: Savannah, Georgia. Founded in 1733, Savannah was the first city in Georgia and is 75 square miles. Population: 133,000. MEMBERS: 14 women and 38 men. They have Lions of all ages spanning from 35 to older than 80. It’s a diverse group of attorneys, doctors, accountants, retired military personnel and teachers. They also have members employed in health care, utility, banking and public service who have a passion to serve their community. MEETING MATTERS: The club meets for noon lunches the second and fourth Thursday of the month at the Savannah Golf Club. The annual St. Patrick’s Day meeting features the Grand Marshal of the Savannah parade and his entourage with Irish songs provided by the St. Vincent’s Academy Girls Choir. FUNDRAISING: The club has been selling Christmas trees since 1977. This year, the 32nd Annual Christmas Tree Sale profits totaled more than $17,000. Other club fundraisers include the Broom/Mop Sales, a staple since 1950, and Earth Day Food Sales. SERVICE PROJECT: The club is involved in a new service project, Project Vision, a visiontesting program for sixth-grade children. This school year, Lions have tested 1,950 of the 3,600 sixth-grade students in the district. The club anticipates testing every sixth-grade student by the end of the year. It then purchases the eyeglasses for those who are not able to pay. Based on records since 1957, the club has collected 175,000 pair of used eyeglasses and has purchased 10,000 new eyeglasses. PROUDEST MOMENT AS A CLUB:The club was honored with a visit by Past International President James E. Ervin, who was the keynote speaker for the club’s 80th anniversary celebration in 2002. Since 1981, the club has maintained a marker and a flag pole on River Street in the historic district from which they fly the U.S., Georgia and Lions Clubs International flags 24 hours a day, constantly promoting Lions. The city of Savannah has hosted the state Lions Club convention 13 times. WHY BE A LION: “Joining our Lions club puts people together who share a common interest in providing youngsters with opportunities to regain and maintain good vision health. Our club is especially proud of the group effort we make to support our fundraising programs and we are physically active in various ways to make our projects so successful each year. The camaraderie and good humor are cornerstones of our club, and we welcome new members who wish to share our spirit.” – Club President Chip Nedza OVERHEARD “Today a lot of business networking is done on the Internet. But you can’t e-mail food baskets to the hungry. Or, in the case of Lions clubs, eyeglasses to the visually impaired.” —Story on the new Seven Hills Lions Club in Virginia in The News & Advance. “I encourage everyone to do this. It will change your heart.” —Ginger Payne, an optician in Burlington, North Carolina, on a mission to Mexico helping 17,000 people with eyeglasses collected by Lions. From the Times News. “This is what community is all about.” —Mayor Ric McGee of Kawartha Lakes, Ontario, Canada, on new soccer fields and a track for a public school made possible by the Oakwood & District Lions Club. From Mykawartha.com
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