Lion Jim Nelson - President 2016/2017
Dumfries Lions Club was formed in November 1981 and we meet on the second Monday of the month at 7.30pm in the Cairndale Hotel, Dumfries. At present we have a membership of 24 which consists of a mixture of people, including ladies, of different ages and from a wide range of backgrounds.
Our Club is part of the International Association of Lions Club which is the largest community service organisation of its type in the world. Help for the local community is the prime object of any Lions Club because our motto is "We Serve". We like to think of ourselves as good doers rather than "do gooders" and we are people who care about people. We are willing to serve our community and we enjoy fellowship and get satisfaction from participating in a job well done.
Since 1981, the Club has made a significant contribution to the local community and to the advancement of the Lions organisation in Scotland. It is estimated that we have raised over £350,000 for local charities and other good causes during the last thirty five years and the Club is now one of the most active in Scotland.
Locally the Club has provided help for youth, pensioners, the sick, the hearing and visually challenged, the disabled and many local groups. The Lions in fact are interested in helping anyone who needs assistance provided that sufficient resources are available.
We have participated in many Lions' projects including eye camps, water wells, Lions Clubs International Foundation (LCIF), Young Ambassador, youth football and the hosting of young international visitors.
The latter category was the objective of one of our most successful projects when we hosted the 1998 International Youth centre in Dumfries. 46 youths from 27 countries participated in a 10 day programme arranged by the Club and financed by Lions Clubs International. In 2016 the Dumfries Lions hosted this prestigious event again with 40 guests attending.
In 2006, the club hosted the 105NE Annual District Convention in the Cairndale Hotel, Dumfries and over 250 delegates attended, from all over the UK and from abroad and Dumfries Lions hosted the event again in 2014.
HOW DO WE DO IT?
For most of the projects we do, funds are raised in a number of ways. By careful planning and participation by club members we are able to organise our events with a high degree of professionalism. The projects include curling weekends, golf tournaments, raft races, duck races, charity shops, coffee mornings, dances, auctions, race nights, flag days, raffles, sale of Christmas tree and car boot sales etc and all this money is used for local charities and other good causes. None of the funds we raise is used for admin purposes so all the cash collected from the public goes to those who need it.
WHEN DID IT START?
Lions Clubs International was founded in 1917 in Illinois, USA, the dream of Chicago business man Melvin Jones who persuaded a number of business clubs to amalgamate. The word “Lion” was chosen because of its strength, courage, fidelity and vital action and these are all attributes valued by the members.
New clubs were then formed throughout the United States and by 1920 the organisation became international with a club in Canada. The movement expanded from then, reaching Europe in 1948. The Lions came to Britain (London) in 1950 and in 1952 the first Lions club was formed in Scotland. Over the past 100 years, we have done a vast amount of work in the pursuit of our objectives. In addition to the work in the local communities, globally, this has included substantial relief for catastrophes and there is a special fund (LCIF) for such events. The Lions are also in the forefront with sight conservation, hearing and speech action, prevention of drug abuse, work on the environment, education and social services.
The Lions also do a great deal for youth by organising international exchanges, youth camps and the Young Ambassador programme aimed at developing up and coming youngsters from our midst.
Lions Clubs International is the world's largest service club organization with more than 1.4 million members in approximately 46,000 clubs in more than 200 countries and geographical areas around the world.