a BEACON of hope. On the Outer Banks of my home state of North Carolina, stands the world’s tallest brick lighthouse. The Cape Hatteras lighthouse, built in 1807, has stood as a symbol of hope for mariners for over two centuries. Atlantic currents in this area made for excellent travel for ships, except in the area just offshore at Cape Hatteras. Nearby, the warm Gulf Stream ocean current collides with the colder Labrador Current, creating ideal conditions for powerful ocean storms and sea swells. The beacon at Cape Hatteras has been credited with guiding ships to safe harbor - pointing the way for thousands who thought all hope was lost. In spite of modern navigational aids and onboard satellite systems, lighthouses still dot the shores of oceans around the world. They have stood the test of time, and remain symbols of hope for those who have lost their way or are in need of assistance. The lighthouse keeper who used to manually light a lamp at the top of the lighthouse has long been replaced, but the light is still relevant. Helen Keller asked the Lions to help her bring light to others. We answered that call as no other organization could, and our light of service is more relevant today than ever before. Yes – technology has added convenience to our lives, and we are all thankful for medical advances that have improved quality of life, and in many cases have made it possible to eradicate diseases that have plagued humankind. But in spite of advances far too numerous to mention, that have made our lives better, nothing has replaced the need for human interaction. There is no substitute for an outstretched hand offered in service. Built on a solid foundation of volunteer service, Lions Clubs International has been providing hope to those in need since 1917. Throughout our history, Lions have been shining a light, highlighting health and happiness for millionsOf people living in darkness and despair. There is a light that emanates from each and every Lion member. You can see it in their eyes, you can see it in their smile, and you can see it in their actions. “a ray of light from another soul touched the darkness of my mind and I found myself…and broke through the dark, silent imprisonment which held me.” Helen Keller As we navigate our way through this year, there may be unforeseen obstacles along the way, rugged shorelines, storms and rough seas. But there are over 1.3 million lighthouses in 205 countries – Lions members who will continue to light the way, and continue to serve as beacons of hope. As your president, I ask of you to let the light of service shine brightly. Together, let us continue to be a symbol of light and hope for those who are in need, and for those who are searching for a safe harbor and a better tomorrow. Sid L. Scruggs III International President “I want Lions to realize they are the ones that people look to for a promise of a better tomorrow. They are the Beacon of Hope.” Sid L. Scruggs III be a BEACON of service The Key To Our Success Is Through Service and Impactful Service Projects. Our motto “We Serve” defines our mission, and is the core principle of our organization. This year, we are rededicating ourselves to service. Service will, in fact, be the focal point of my 2010-11 Presidential Theme. As people increasingly seek ways to volunteer, the time has never been better for Lions to shine a light on service. Hands-on service shines a light that directly touches people. We have seen it in practice and we have found through surveys and focus groups that “hands-on” service and direct contact with those we serve has become more important than ever before. People volunteer for many reasons, but mostly because they want to make a difference. They are questioning what is important in their lives and reassessing how they spend their time. They are turning to community service and other volunteer opportunities. We must value their time by ensuring it is used to make the greatest difference possible. Global Service Action Campaigns As an extension of the highly successful “Lions In Sight” program, this year Lions will be encouraged to participate in four Global Service Action Campaigns. Lions will be asked to shine a light on youth by planning programs in conjunction with the United Nations International Youth Day in August. Other opportunities include shining a light on preventable blindness with projects in support of our own World Sight Day in October; shining a light on hunger by holding food drives to coincide with traditional holidays such as Christmas, Hanukah, Id Al-Fitr, Diwali, or other befitting occasions; and finally, Lions will be asked to shine a light on the environment by conducting environmental projects and activities in support of Earth Day in April. Global Service Action Days will give Lions an opportunity to expand their own vision of how they can help in their community, and bring more attention to the service that we are providing.Lions Global Service Summit We are the global leader in community service. As such, who better to host a global service summit than Lions Clubs International? During the third quarter of this year, leaders from other service and volunteer organizations will be asked to convene a summit at our headquarters to discuss and share ideas about emerging trends in service. Enhanced Reporting Tools The redesigned Lions Clubs International Web site has made communicating easier, from the top down and from the bottom up. The newly enhanced service and mission database has now made it easier for clubs to report their signature projects, and record their impact. This information can now be shared with other clubs. You will be just a click away from connecting to other clubs. We will also be producing a “State of Service” report, using data from our clubs around the world. This report will provide us with an instant snapshot of the impact we are making. telling OUR story Let it shine, let it shine, let it shine. We’ve all heard a Lion say at one time or another “we’re the best kept secret.” That’s a self-fulfilling prophecy, and simply isn’t true. I’m asking Lions to erase that phrase from their vocabulary. Why is it important for us to share our story with others? Because needs continue to escalate around the world. In order to continue to meet those needs, it is important that we grow our membership. To do that, we must increase public awareness of the Lions Clubs International brand – who we are, what we do, and what we stand for. Lions Clubs International has the most extensive and successful public relations program of any service club organization. Last year alone, there were over 8,000 newspaper articles around the world reporting Lions activities, and over 700 television news features. Countless numbers of clubs are now getting onboard with active PR programs with innovative TV and radio public service announcements, billboard advertising, and use of social media to project their message. But an extremely successful global program can only define part of the association’s overall image. People do not join “The International Association of Lions Clubs.” They join a Lions club – YOUR Lions club. While a positiveImage will encourage prospective members and supporters to think well of your club, only a vigorous and successful local public relations program will move them to donate time and money, and accept an invitation to membership. To assist clubs and districts, we have created a new electronic library of PR tools – a “one stop shopping” section of the web site that has everything needed to run a successful public relations program. With the number of visitors growing each month, the redesigned Lions Clubs International Web site is now the fastest way to find information and connect with others. Browse the Web site. Become familiar with it. Use the search engine to find what you are looking for expeditiously. For more information about how you can create a successful public relations program, go to www.lionsclubs.org. Service projects and public relations go hand in hand. Engage your local media by inviting them to one of your signature service projects, and engage your local community by promoting projects via social networking sites and on YouTube. our FUTURE shines brightly. Today’s young people are tomorrow’s leaders. We must do a better job of communicating with teen-agers and young adults. No light shines more brightly than the one lighting the way toward the future. Our future. There has never been a generation of young people more involved in their community. In the United States alone, 15% of people aged 17 to 25 are volunteering their time – giving back to the community. In other areas of the world that percentage is even higher. How we communicate our message to them will help determine whether they choose to volunteer as Lions. Contrary to popular belief, young people don’t speak a different language. But they DO use a different mode of communication. This is the generation of computers, iphones, texting, instant messaging, and every means of social networking. Let’s bring our message to THEM. We’ve already started. Lions Clubs International now has Facebook, MySpace, Twitter, an iphone application, our own YouTube channel, LinkedIn, and Flicker. And don’t forget my new International President’s blog. Don’t know what those are? Find out! Have you ever watched a podcast? Did you know many of LCI’s videos are now podcast? But our ability to interact with young people goes beyond communicating. We need to engage them with programs they can relate to, and encourage their input and participation. Clubs have many ways to brighten young lives. One of the best is to team with local schools orYouth organizations. At a school, your club might organize a Leo club or join together with an established Leo club for a joint project. But let the students take the lead!!!! You can also sponsor students in a Lions international youth camp, exchange program, or introduce a Lions Quest program. What about sponsoring a Peace Poster contest at your nearest school? Last year over 360,000 children ages 11-13 participated in the Peace Poster contest. This year I’m introducing a new initiative – an essay contest for blind or visually impaired children ages 11-13. It will be run similar to the Peace Poster contest. Students will have the opportunity write an essay, no more than 500 words, using the theme “The Power of Peace.” For more information about how your club can sponsor a student, go to www.lionsclubs.org. I’m also putting increased emphasis this year on our Young Leaders In Service Award. The Young Leaders In Service Award program is part of the Lions Opportunities for Youth initiative. The mission of Lions Opportunities for Youth is: To provide the young people of the world with opportunities for achievement, learning, contribution and service, individually and collectively, through sponsorship of activities identified as best practices in the field of youth development. Again – for more information consult the LCI Web site. find thelight withinYOURSELF. The image of a lighthouse is but a symbol. But the light that shines through each and every Lion member is real. Along with my family, being a Lion has brought a bright light to my life. The light it has shone not only helped me to better understand my own community, but also has given me a greater perspective on my nation and the world. Our biggest challenge is to remain the world’s premiere service organization, and attract a new generation of service-minded men and women. How? Through our mission of service. Expanded service equals expanded membership. It’s that easy. Lions members are never happier – their light shines the brightest – when they are serving others. Engage a Lion in conversation, and the one thing they want to talk about is the projects their club is doing, or a memorable moment when they made a significant impact on someone. Lions are proud of what they do. Give Lions a reason to stay by making a difference in someone’s life. Accomplish that, and they will be Lions for life. We have seen the positive impact that the Global Membership Team (GMT) has made over the past two years. A strong GMT, extension workshops and retention will remain central to the membership successes we have recently achieved, but with a slant toward service. This year, I will be emphasizing service and how clubs can attract new members and retain members by engaging in signature service projects. I’ll be appointing a special coordinator to GMT to promote service relative to membership. The light of service shines brightly in all of us. Keep that light shining brightly, and share it with others. Like the Olympic torch, pass the light from one person to another. Bright Start Awards. “Unless you try to do something beyond what you have already mastered, you will never grow. Some people dream of success... while others wake up and work hard at it.” Unknown The Bright Start Awards will recognize District Governors who achieve strong membership results in the first three months of their year. The Bright Start Awards will consist of two levels. District Governors will be eligible for only one of the awards. The qualifications for the awards are: FIRST LIGHT AWARD: two new clubs OR positive membership on September 30, 2010 BRIGHT LIGHT AWARD: five new clubs AND positive membership on September 30, 2010 All new club applications must be completed and received by the LCI New Clubs and Program Marketing Department by the close of business on Thursday, September 30, 2010. To be considered as a qualifying new club, a completed charter application, all documentation/ forms and fees must be received by LCI by close of business on September 30, 2010. The Beacon AwardsThe Beacon Awards, to be given at the International Convention in Seattle, will recognize outstanding achievement by clubs and districts in the area of service. Only clubs and districts that participate in the Global Service Action Campaigns, and send their respective report back to Lions Clubs International Public Relations Division, will be eligible for the Beacon Awards. Sending your report (a narrative of your activity, with photos if available), will automatically enter your club or district. Categories include: • Best Environmental Project (by club or district) • Most Creative Youth Program Activity (by club or district) • Outstanding Service to the Blind or Visually Impaired (by a club or district) • Best Hunger Relief Program or Activity (by a club or district) • Lion That Best Exemplifies The Spirit of Service For the last category, nominations must be sent to the Lions Clubs International Public Relations Division no later than April 1st, 2011. Nominations can only be made by Executive Officers or International Directors. INSPIRING hope globally and locally. What better way to make our light shine even brighter than by supporting our Lions Clubs International Foundation? This year my goal is to increase understanding of LCIF’s programs and the importance of our impact on individual lives, and to increase the number of clubs and individuals donating to LCIF. Lions and LCIF sprang into action to assist victims in Haiti and Chile, and we are still providing assistance to the victims of the 2004 tsunami. We have shown time and time again our ability to not only be involved in first response, but also to provide long-term solutions. This is what sets us apart. Generous support by Lions has enabled LCIF to establish new programs, such as the Special Olympics Opening Eyes Program and other programs that have transformed people’s lives. “I do not know what your destiny will be, but one thing I know, the only ones among you who will really be happy are those who will have sought and found how to serve.” Every 7.5 seconds, a flash of light emanates from the Cape Hatteras lighthouse. Every 7.5 seconds, a Lion provides some measure of hope to someone in need. There are 1.3 million flashes of light serving in 205 countries or geographic locations around the world. Individually, we may only be a flicker. Collectively, we are a powerful beacon of hope for people looking for light in their lives. We are the world’s global leader in community service. We are the example of how one organization, with members working together, can sustain communities. We are a beacon of hope for all the world to see. We are Lions. Serving together, our light is shining brighter than ever.
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