Lions Clubs across Australia and the world are celebrating 100 years of worldwide community service as 7 June 2017 marks the centenary of the first Lions Club meeting.
Lions Clubs International (LCI), the largest service club organisation in the world, was founded by a Chicago businessman named Melvin Jones on 7 June 1917 in response to his vision that ordinary people could use their talents to better service their communities. LCI now has 46,000 clubs and over 1.4 million members globally, working together to provide humanitarian support to communities in need.
Lions Australia’s National Executive Officer, Rob Oerlemans said:
“This significant international milestone also coincides with 70 years since our first Australian Lions Club began in Lismore. We aren’t looking backward though; we are building for the next 100 years of caring, humanitarian projects to support our Australian communities”
The 1200 Lions clubs across Australia will mark the Centennial with free barbecues, special dinners and other community events, but in keeping with tradition, it is what’s going on behind-the-scenes that is worth noting.
“Two years ago we set ourselves an ambitious target of celebrating our Centennial by helping 100 million people by June 2018. A year away, our Lions have already eclipsed this goal by helping 150 million, and looks like achieving double our original target by the end of the Centennial year.”
Lions Clubs in Australia are also supporting their communities with infrastructure projects to provide a lasting legacy for the future.
Australia Post will release a Centenary commemorative stamp. The $1 stamp was designed by Hobart-based designer Lynda Warner and will be available online and from participating Australia Post shops from June 7.
“I would like to thank and congratulate our Lions in Australia for their continued service and support of their communities and wish Lions all around the world the very best for our next 100 years of service,” said Mr Oerlemans.