·         The first Lions Club was formed in 1917, founded by Melvin Jones.

·         Lions became international in 1920 with the Windsor club.

·         We have grown to be the world’s largest service organization.

·         Over 43,000 clubs worldwide with approx. 1.4 million members.

·         The Orillia Lions Club was sponsored by Barrie in 1937

·         Dinner meetings are on the 2nd Monday of each month from Sept. to June at the Mariposa Inn, social time at 6:00; dinner at 6:30 p.m.

·         Business meetings are on the 4th Monday of each month from Sept. to June at 7:00 p.m.


Each Lions Club is unique in what it does, projects it supports and where its money is spent.  We do have one common goal, working with the blind and the causes of blindness, e.g. diabetes. Why work with the blind?    Helen Keller spoke at the 1925 Lions convention and challenged the Lions to be “Knights of the Blind”.  We accepted that challenge.


Sight First program: 

A Lions international program, whose goal is to “eliminate all preventable and curable blindness worldwide” It is estimated that there are over 30 million blind people worldwide and 80% is either curable or preventable.  This is an ambitious & expensive program.  


There are programs taking place today doing just this, preventing and reversing blindness.  For example in South America and Africa they have set up production lines to perform cataract surgery.  There are areas in the world where clean water has been made available to prevent river blindness, the leading cause in 3rd world countries.


Lions also support


  • Camp Dorset In Muskoka provides people requiring dialysis an opportunity to spend a week of vacation and receive dialysis at the camp.
  • At Parry Sound, Lake Joseph, is a camp for the blind.
  • Camp Huronda in Huntsville - diabetes camp
  • In Oakville we have a dog school, training dogs for the blind, the deaf and special needs.


The following are some of the other projects that our Club supports financially:

  • Work with the youth.
  • Youth camps.
  • People with a handicap.
  • Boys and girls minor sports.
  • Environmental projects and initiatives


How do we raise money for these projects?  The following are our major fundraisers:

  • Lions/Rotary Funfest Civic Holiday weekend
  • 200 Club draw (Monthly draw for $50.00 and $75.00 plus an annual draw for $1,000.)
  • Annual Lions Golf Tournament at Couchiching Golf Club

      . BINGO at the Geneva Bingo Hall with the Washago Lions and Oro Lions



Being a Lion is very rewarding, you can see the results of what you do.  The funny thing is, having that reward is all that you do it for, there is no pay.  In fact you do have to pay dues and give up some of your free time.  But that is small payment for the satisfaction received.  As of July 1, 2019, our dues are $100.00 billed 3 times per year (July 1st, November 1st, March 1st.  Initiation fee is $50.00.


Wouldn’t you be proud to be a Lion in this community with all that the Club has done, and for all that it can still do?


Thank you for considering membership in the Orillia Lions Club.


Singularly we can do a lot, together we can achieve greatness.


Contact:Alan Smale

Membership Chair



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