I mentioned previously that I had joined the North Durban Lions Club. It started when I met my girlfriend, and discovered Vicki’s deep passion for Lions and what they do. By way of explanation, Lions Clubs International is the largest service organisation in the world. The website can say it a lot better than I can:
Lions are an international network of 1.3 million men and women in 200 countries and geographic areas who work together to answer the needs that challenge communities around the world. Known for working to end preventable blindness, Lions participate in a vast variety of projects important to their communities. These projects range from cleaning up local parks to providing supplies to victims of natural disasters. Beginning in 1917, the association of Lions clubs has provided millions of people with the opportunity to give something back to their communities.
We meet the needs of our local communities and the world. Our 1.3 million men and women in 200 countries and geographic areas conduct vision and health screenings, build parks, support eye hospitals, award scholarships, assist youth, provide help in time of disaster and much more.
Join us in making our communities and the world better places to live.
She invited me to a meeting or two and also to some of their service events, and I was moved by the amount of selfless good work they are doing. The events I attended before joining included fund raising at a bikers’ rally (the bikers themselves were raising funds for a children’s home) by selling food and refreshments. We also went for a day to a camp run by another selfless group, Higher Ground, catering to adults with acquired head injuries, where we laid on a braai for them and played some cricket with them and generally had a good time with them while making them feel a little better. The club also does a lot of work at the Golden Hours school (for those with special needs) and at the market the school has every Sunday morning.
To join Lions, one needs to be invited by a current member, attend two functions and two meetings and be approved by the club. Unless you’re an axe-wielding psycho though, most clubs are only too delighted to have new members. I was inducted into the club in January at a stunning function held at the Pani dam clubhouse at Mt. Edgecombe Country Club. Two other people, a married couple, were inducted with me at the same time. It was a funky black-tie event, as you can see below:
More photos can be seen in the album.
I’ve been a member for several months now, and I really enjoy it. The club itself is vibrant, and does great things for many people with very little, which is a terrific feeling. The camaraderie of Lions itself is also something special – the Kokstad Raft race being a good case in point. With the troubles we had in Kokstad, we only needed to call a fellow Lion of the Kokstad Lions Club, and we were okay. Lions do a lot to help each other out in various situations, and it’s great to know there’s a group of like-minded people almost anywhere in the world I may find myself who I could identify with, and indeed turn to for assistance if needed.
My club falls under Multiple District 410 (Southern Africa) which is split into four Districts, with mine being 410C (KZN, Free State and Kimberley). Our club currently has a very poor web presence, but I aim to rectify that over the coming year – assistance from people with more web-foo than myself will be gratefully accepted 🙂 We do have a Google calendar of our events here.
If anyone who reads this wants to know more or is possibly even considering joining, please don’t hesitate to chat to me, and I will gladly invite you to and take you along to our next meeting or event if you so wish.