Serving Our Community

Community Service in Action
Thanks to the community support for our spring/summer raffle and the Annual Pancake Breakfast with Santa and Mrs. Claus as well as individual donations to the Eugene Downtown Lions Foundation, the following Community Service Grants were awarded for 2020-2021:
  • $ 580.00 John G. Shedd Institute
  • $2500.00 Center for Community Counseling
  • $1000.00 Lane Senior Support Coalition
  • $1000.00 Olive Plaza
  • $1000.00 Community Support Services


Youngsters Enthusiastic About Our Nation’s Flag

Giving American Flags to first-grade students is a very rewarding Lions Club program. This year I visited three schools - Awbrey Park Elementary School, Howard Elementary School, and O’Hara Catholic School.  I always start off by introducing myself and explaining, in simple terms, what our Lions Club does. Then I explain the origin of our flag and tell them about the part Betsy Ross played in the history of our flag. The one fact that seems to surprise them the most is that originally a stripe was added for each state that joined the union. When they got to 15 states they realized the flag would become too cumbersome with that many stripes, so they decided to add only stars when a new state was admitted into the union.  Two of the three schools have me do the presentation separately for each of the three first-grade classes.

I have been privileged to participate in this program for many years representing the Eugene Downtown Lions Club. Actually, it’s been over 15 years now. It is heartwarming having contact with first graders who are excited to learn more about the origin of “Old Glory” and to discuss the words in the Pledge of Allegiance.  When I stand in front of these eager youngsters it is great to see their faces light up when they realize that they will be taking home their own American Flag, wooden block stand, and the booklet discussing the Pledge and the history of the flag. 

I explain the meaning of the words of the Pledge of Allegiance referring back to my childhood and what we thought some of the words meant.  Passing out the flags is a real thrill when you see their excitement as they say a polite “Thank You” and take their flag set back to their desks. In this day and age of political correctness and “the world view,” it is good to instill some pride for our country and the flag that represents it into the upcoming generation that will eventually be the leaders of this great nation.  

This year something different happened. The principal of Howard Elementary school alerted 4-J that the presentation would take place. As a result, KEZI television sent a reporter/photographer to cover the presentation. Special thanks to Principal Allan Chinn and to KEZI-TV for letting the public see this worthwhile program in action.

Pictures: 1)   (img_0138).  2)  (img_0146). 3) All of the first grades at O’Hara Catholic School gathered in the cafeteria for the presentation (img_0151) 

1 July 2019

Tim Chuey

Publicity Chairman

Eugene Downtown Lions Club

Lion Tim Chuey passing out flag sets at Awbrey Park Elementary School.

Students at Howard Elementary School proudly display their flags on their desks.

An Old Lions Club Project Takes on a

Brand New Centennial Project Look


It all started back in the late 1990s when the Eugene Downtown Lions Club spearheaded a fundraising campaign to provide a special guest house for the families of patients who have to stay for long periods of time at Sacred Heart Peacehealth Hospital in downtown Eugene. A group of Oregon Lions Clubs raised over $280,000 of which Lions Clubs International Foundation donated $75,000, to help build the Children’s Miracle Network –Lions Patient Family Guest House. The house that was renovated with those funds was built in the 1920s so upkeep has been ongoing.  The hospital was feeling some serious growing pains downtown with no room to expand and a major building project was the needed cure. They built the new Sacred Heart Peacehealth Medical at Riverbend in Springfield.  With the majority of the hospital’s facilities now in Springfield, it was decided that a new guesthouse was needed. The original CMN-Lions Guest House is being converted into a mental health facility to be operated by Sacred Heart Medical Center.

That brings us to the present. The Sacred Heart Medical Center Foundation with the aid of local Lions Clubs began a $6 million capital campaign to construct a new house located adjacent to the hospital complex. The Sacred Heart Hospital Guild pledged $1 million dollars over the next five years. The Eugene Downtown Lions Club lead an effort that raised almost $150,000 from Lions Clubs and individual Lions from Linn, Lane, Coos, Douglas, and Benton counties to match the $100,000 contributed by The Lions Club International Foundation.

 A groundbreaking ceremony took place April 26, 2018 with shovels full of dirt being turned over to begin the building process. At the ceremony, a scale model of the new facility, designed by the 2Form Architectural 

Firm was on display. It will be a one-story building with two wings. One wing will house families of pediatric patients and babies in the Neo-Natal Intensive Care Unit and the other wing will house families of adult patients. Ronald McDonald Charities will staff and operate the house when completed.

We fast-forward to November 15, 2018, and it is easy to see the progress that has been made.  A special construction tour was given to Local Lions so they could see what their fundraising work has done. Chambers Construction confirmed that the facility is will be completed by Spring 2019 and occupancy is expected to begin by Summmer.



The new facility will be called the Heartfelt House.

5 February 2019

Tim Chuey

Publicity Chairman

Eugene Downtown

Lions Club


Students Reap The Benefits Of Lions Club’s Service

 Lions Clubs International is celebrating 100 years of service. As part of The Centennial Challenge, all Lions Clubs are being asked to devise service projects that will both celebrate the founding of Lions Clubs International in 1917 and benefit the people that “We Serve.” 

Serving children is one of the main goals projected in this effort and Eugene Downtown Lions are meeting that challenge by performing vision screenings at local elementary schools. One such screening took place at Edgewood Elementary School in South Eugene on Monday, November 6th.  

The youngsters were brought into the screening area in small class groups and already had identification papers with them. They lined up to have their vision checked with a modern digital scanner. Those performing the tests were already trained on how to operate the user-friendly piece of hand-held equipment called the Welch Allyn Spot photo screening device.

All the students had to do was look straight at the screen on the device and hold still. The reading was recorded in the Spot device and uploaded a computer. Those students who’s vision was at all questionable would have their parents notified that the child should see a vision professional for further testing.

According to Jordan Ryder, event coordinator from the Oregon Lions Sight and Hearing Foundation, the Lions screened 372 students from grades 1-5 during the one-day morning session. He reports that about 80 such screenings were performed over the state last year. That is about 50% of the total number of school students in Oregon and the hope is to increase that percentage over the next few years.

Eugene Downtown Lions Norma Barbisan, Joan Vaughan, Diane Landon, Karen Norton, Mary Fechtel, and Tom McCann worked along with OLSHF event Coordinator Jordan Ryder to perform the screenings. 

November 7, 2017

Tim Chuey

Publicity Chairman

Eugene Downtown Lions Club


All it takes is a good idea and Lions answer the call to action

There are many Lions who are always devising projects that will help others. Eugene Downtown Lions Club Immediate Past President Sharon Newton is one of those Lions.  Even when she’s down with a broken wrist and recuperating from shoulder surgery, Lion Sharon is thinking about ways for the Downtown Lions Club to serve.  She read an article in the Register-Guard newspaper about how the Active 20-30 Club had fallen behind in reaching their goal of collecting 2,000 coats for needy kids (Coats For Kids project) before winter sets in.

Lion Sharon decided that the Downtown Club could fill the gap, and at the same time, forge another link in the chain we are trying to create between our club and theirs: as they age out of the Active 20-30 Club, we would love to have them join us! After getting an O.K from Lion President Craig Ford and from Community Services chair, Lion Jim Origliosso, Sharon reached out to our club members with the help of her temporary secretary Lion Jim Newton (Newt).  They were asked to bring new or gently used coats or donations, if they preferred, to the Newton’s home or Lion Newt could come to their homes to pick them up.

Tuesday October 24th Holly Jones, of the Active 20-30 Club, picked up the more than 20 coats and $200 in contributions from members. Twelve Lions contributed coats, money, or both. Our newly organized UO Campus Club also pitched in donating three coats.

This was a quick and easy project for our club and a good chance to serve the community while cooperating with another service organization.  It shows that good works don’t have to be only on a large scale.  Small projects can also be very beneficial. Thanks to Lion Newt who provided the details for this article.




Downtown Lions Donate To Local Boys And Girls Club

The Eugene Downtown Lions Club members collected books, puzzles and games to give to the youngsters age 6-12 at the local Boys and Girls Club. Lion President Sharon Newton suggested the idea as part of our efforts to get more involved with serving the needs of area children.

Boys and Girls Club of Emerald Valley (BGCEV) is located at the Westmorland Community center and their stated mission is “To inspire and empower all young people, especially those who need us most, to realize their full potential as productive, responsible and caring citizens.” Their Director of Operations Aaron Haack and CEO Ryon Wheeler gratefully accepted our collection of activity items for the youngsters.

A group of Downtown Lions including President Sharon Newton, Jim Newton, Ed Gear, Wes Reynolds, Norma Barbisan, and Bob Hixson (he didn’t arrive in time for the pictures) delivered the items collected from fellow Lions to the Boys and Girls Club after the Lions Noon meeting Wednesday August 24th.

This actually ties in with the Lions Clubs International Centennial Celebration year 2016-2017. The International organization suggests that clubs take on special Centennial projects and, though it is only in the development stage, the EDT Lions are working with Boys and Girls Club of Emerald Valley to possibly stage a fundraising event with the combined efforts of both organizations to benefit these deserving young people. Hopefully there will be more information to come in the very near future. I hope I have peaked your interest for what will develop next.

29 August 2016

Tim Chuey

Publicity Chairman

Eugene Downtown

Lions Club


An Old Tradition Is Brought Back To Life

As the first event of her new presidency Lion President Sharon Newton chose to bring back a tradition that hasn’t been seen for 8 years. For many years the Eugene Downtown Lions Club held a summer picnic for the Visually Impaired. Saturday July 9, 2016 was the day it returned. The Downtown Lions in conjunction with the Oregon Commission for the Blind organized the picnic at Emerald Park in Eugene providing a free picnic lunch for all of the attendees. The Lions also provided rides for any of the guests who needed transportation to and from the park.  The morning started out overcast (cloudy) but by about 12:15 pm the clouds parted and the sun shone with the backdrop of blue sky and just a few clouds. Jackie Macy from the Oregon Commission For The Blind checked the picnic guests in as they came to the pavilion. The food, fried chicken, potato salad, macaroni salad and watermelon, tasted great out in the open air of the park. The Lions filled plates and served them to the guests who needed assistance. The best part of the noon to 3 pm gathering was the time spent meeting and getting to know the guests and Lions. I had some very meaningful conversations with many of the guests as we chatted over the delicious food. The group varied from those with some visual impairment to those who are totally blind. Some had their guide dogs with them. I have always been impressed with the relationship between a dog and their owner. You can see the bond of trust and love between them. In my humble opinion, the best way to evaluate the success of this event was to look at the smiling faces and listen to the interesting discussions amongst the guests and the Lions. Lion President Sharon’s first event of her presidency will definitely live on and be repeated for many years to come.


12 July 2016

Tim Chuey, Publicity Chairman

 Eugene Downtown Lions Club






Eugene Downtown Lions Participate in "Honor Flight"

A group of 51 veterans and 53 volunteer “Guardians” made the trip from Eugene to Washington, D.C. to visit the National WWII Memorial. Despite the problems caused by the partial government shutdown, the monument was open specially for the “Honor Flight” group. 
Eugene Downtown Lion Vice-President Karen Norton and her husband Gene participated in their second “Honor Flight.”

Bill Sarnoff with flag.Another member of the club Lion Bill Sarnoff was one of the local veterans going on this historic trip to honor all of those who served our country in WWII.

The group also visited the other memorials from Vietnam, Korea, the Air Force and Navy Memorials, along with the “Changing of the Guard” at Arlington National Cemetery.Members of the group also participated in the wreath laying ceremony, which was a first.

Lion Karen Norton described how the group was taken care of on their journey. “As in any Honor Flight there   was so much help along the way. Vietnam veteran motorcycle honor guards escorted us to the memorials  and then to Dulles when we left. The USO delivered & provided lunches at our Chicago stop, going & coming. National Honor flight volunteers were there to great us and help at Dulles and Portland  with whatever we needed, including providing directions, pushing wheelchairs, unloading luggage and giving general good wishes and greetings. Southwest airlines made special recognition of the veterans. TSA gave us priority boarding & screening. The last night we had dinner at the Elks Lodge and volunteer Youth Marines attended us. When we arrived at Portland, it was almost overwhelming. Not many dry eyes. There were 2 bagpipe players as well as State and local police, firefighters and sheriffs all in uniform and standing at attention and saluting. They had all been allowed to go past security to go to where we got off the flight. Military members in uniform and well wishers were on the other side of security. It's hard to describe everything, except to say it's inspiring and makes you feel very proud”.
Thanks go out to everyone involved in making this a memorable trip for our veterans. And a special thank you to our veterans who gave so much in service to our country.

Reported by: Lion Tim Chuey

Publicity Chairman

Eugene Downtown

Lions Club



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