The Edwinstowe and Dukeries Lions Club was founded in 1979, and serves its community through a variety of fundraising and charitable works.
It currently has 17 members, but needs a membership boost so it can help even more people in the area.
The members gather at the South Forest Leisure complex every second and fourth Thursday of each month, from about 7.15pm (for 7.30pm meeting), and finish around 9pm, with a “natter in the bar,” says Club Secretary Jon Yarwood.
He said: “We are a sociable and hardworking group. We have fun but are deadly serious about helping people, raising money and giving it away to worthy causes.
"With more members we could make an even bigger difference to our community.
"The last couple of years have been awful for many people, and the Lions helped make a difference.”
At the onset of the pandemic they sourced and distributing PPE to hospitals and care homes, helped food banks and supported people fleeing domestic violence.
Jon said: "We help school projects, inspiring children to reach their potential, helped to purchasing several defibrillators in our region, have supported groups, individuals, and charities, like the Air Ambulance, Marie Curie and others.”
The group is involved in a Santa Sleigh run each December. The fundraising brings in about half the money the group collects in a year.
Jon added: "Last year, the old sleigh was coming to the end of its life.
"We decided to build a new one, and contacted businesses and organisations for help. The response was fantastic. Money, time and labour was given to make the rebuild project possible,
"Special thanks went to Redfern Travel, who built the chassis and donations came from Tesco Groundwork and The Thoresby Trust. Other support was given by Sign Power for graphics and County Batteries, for batteries.”
The sleigh was built by the ATTFE college at Sutton. The Lions wanted to give special mention to its Principal Liz Barratt OBE.
"Her enthusiasm was infectious, she quickly enlisted the help of Bill Kenworthy who made and painted the sleigh,” he said. “The members worked each evening to fit lights, seating and a sound system, finally finishing the project just in time for Santa to hop aboard.”
The club held a presentation evening at the South Forest Leisure complex on March 4, 2022, attended by Club President Robert Crampton, Vice President Adam Murphy and Jon.
“The evening was a huge success. President Bob presided, and we recognised a retiring ‘old friend’ ex-Lion Tony Chapman, for his club support and gave awards to the winning team at the Parkgate Academy, Ollerton, for their fantastic work at the Lions ROAR project.”
Appealing for members he said: "Being a Lion is brilliant and fun, there is normally food, a few drinks, and even dancing where possible.
“We desperately need to grow our club, more hands, bodies and minds, are needed. Now more than ever, compassion, love and understanding are needed.”
“If you have a little time and are capable of doing a couple of meetings per month then please contact us.”
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