LIONS CLUB INTERNATIONAL – MOTTO: WE SERVE
Lions Clubs – Ready to Help, Worldwide
Whenever a Lions club gets together, problems get smaller. And communities get better. That's because we help where help is needed – in our own communities and around the world – with unmatched integrity and energy.
The World's Largest Service Club Organization
Our 46,000 clubs and 1.35 million members make us the world's largest service club organization. We're also one of the most effective. Our members do whatever is needed to help their local communities. Everywhere we work, we make friends. With children who need eyeglasses, with seniors who don’t have enough to eat and with people we may never meet.
Lions Clubs International is the world's largest service club organization. We have 1.35 million members in more than 46,000 clubs worldwide.
Lions are everywhere. We're men and women who are active in community projects inover 200 countries and geographic areas.
Lions have a dynamic history. Founded in 1917, we are best known for fighting blindness – it's part of our history as well as our work today. But we also perform volunteer work for many different kinds of community projects – including caring for the environment, feeding the hungry and aiding seniors and the disabled.
Local Community Projects
Lions are active. Our motto is "We Serve." Lions are part of a global service network, doing whatever is necessary to help our local communities.
Lions give sight. By conducting vision screenings, equipping hospitals and clinics, distributing medicine and raising awareness of eye disease, Lions work toward their mission of providing vision for all. We have extended our commitment to sight conservation through countless local community projects and through our international SightFirst Program, which works to eradicate blindness.
Lions serve youth. Our community projects often support local children and schoolsthrough scholarships, recreation and mentoring. Internationally, we offer many programs, including the Peace Poster Contest, Youth Camps and Exchange and Lions Quest. And our Leo Program provides personal development through youth volunteer opportunities. There are approximately 144,000 Leos and 5,700 Leo clubs in more than 140 countries worldwide.
Lions award grants. Since 1968, the Lions Clubs International Foundation has awarded more than US$700 million in grants to support Lions humanitarian community projects around the world. Together, our Foundation and Lions are helping communities following natural disasters by providing for immediate needs such as food, water, clothing and medical supplies – and aiding in long-term reconstruction.
LIONS CLUB MOTTO – WE SERVE
Vision Statement: To be the global leader in community and humanitarian service.
Mission Statement: To empower volunteers to serve their communities, meet humanitarian needs, encourage peace and promote international understanding through Lions clubs.
Lions International Purposes
To Organize, charter and supervise service clubs to be known as Lions clubs.
To Coordinate the activities and standardize the administration of Lions clubs.
To Create and foster a spirit of understanding among the peoples of the world.
To Promote the principles of good government and good citizenship.
To Take an active interest in the civic, cultural, social and moral welfare of the community.
To Unite the clubs in the bonds of friendship, good fellowship and mutual understanding.
To Provide a forum for the open discussion of all matters of public interest; provided, however, that partisan politics and sectarian religion shall not be debated by club members.
To Encourage service-minded people to serve their community without personal financial reward, and to encourage efficiency and promote high ethical standards in commerce, industry, professions, public works and private endeavors.
Lions Code of Ethics
To Show my faith in the worthiness of my vocation by industrious application to the end that I may merit a reputation for quality of service.
To Seek success and to demand all fair remuneration or profit as my just due, but to accept no profit or success at the price of my own self-respect lost because of unfair advantage taken or because of questionable acts on my part.
To Remember that in building up my business it is not necessary to tear down another's; to be loyal to my clients or customers and true to myself.
Whenever a doubt arises as to the right or ethics of my position or action towards others, to resolve such doubt against myself.
To Hold friendship as an end and not a means. To hold that true friendship exists not on account of the service performed by one to another, but that true friendship demands nothing but accepts service in the spirit in which it is given.
Always to bear in mind my obligations as a citizen to my nation, my state, and my community, and to give them my unswerving loyalty in word, act, and deed. To give them freely of my time, labor and means.
To Aid others by giving my sympathy to those in distress, my aid to the weak, and my substance to the needy.
To Be Careful with my criticism and liberal with my praise; to build up and not destroy.
LIONS CLUB HISTORY
In 1917, Melvin Jones, a 38-year-old Chicago business leader, asked a simple and world-changing question – what if people put their talents to work improving their communities? Almost 100 years later, Lions Clubs International is the world's largest service club organization, with 1.35 million members in more than 46,000 clubs and countless stories of Lions acting on the same simple idea: let's improve our communities.
In 1917, Melvin Jones, a 38-year-old Chicago business leader, told members of his local business club they should reach beyond business issues and address the betterment of their communities and the world. Jones' group, the Business Circle of Chicago, agreed.
After contacting similar groups around the United States, an organizational meeting was held on June 7, 1917, in Chicago, Illinois, USA. The new group took the name of one of the invited groups, the "Association of Lions Clubs," and a national convention was held in Dallas, Texas, USA in October of that year. A constitution, by-laws, objects and a code of ethics were approved.
Within three years, Lions became an international organization. Since then, we've earned high marks for both integrity and transparency. We're a well-run organization with a steady vision, a clear mission, and a long – and proud – history.
1920: Going International
Just three years after our founding, Lions became international when we established the first club in Canada. Mexico followed in 1927. In the 1950s and 1960s international growth accelerated, with new clubs in Europe, Asia and Africa.
1925: Eradicating Blindness
Helen Keller addressed the Lions Clubs International Convention in Cedar Point, Ohio, USA, and challenged Lions to become "knights of the blind in the crusade against darkness." Since then, we have worked tirelessly to aid the blind and visually impaired.
1945: Uniting Nations
The ideal of an international organization is exemplified by our enduring relationship with the United Nations. We were one of the first nongovernmental organizations invited to assist in the drafting of the United Nations Charter and have supported the work of the UN ever since.
1954: TOLLESBORO LIONS CLUB CHARTED, TOLLESBORO, KY
On April 30, 1954, The Tollesboro Lions Club was officially chartered by Lions Club International. There were 20 members signing the charter. The first president was Charles M. Hughes.
1957: Organizing Youth Programs
In the late 1950s, we created the Leo Program to provide the youth of the world with an opportunity for personal development through volunteering. There are approximately 144,000 Leos and 5,700 Leo clubs in more than 140 countries worldwide.
1968: Establishing Our Foundation
Lions Clubs International Foundation assists Lions with global and large-scale local humanitarian projects. Through our Foundation, Lions meet the needs of their local and global communities.
1990: Launching SightFirst
Through SightFirst, Lions are restoring sight and preventing blindness on a global scale. Launched in 1990, Lions have raised more than $346 million for this initiative. SightFirst targets the major causes of blindness: cataract, trachoma, river blindness, childhood blindness, diabetic retinopathy and glaucoma.
2017 - CELEBRATING 100 YEARS OF COMMUNITY SERVICE
In 2017, Lions Club International celebrated it's 100th Anniversary, Celebrating a Century of Service. The official Centennial Motto is "SINCE 1917 - WHERE THERE'S A NEED THERE'S A LION". The official Centennial Logo is shown below.:
A History of Little League and how the Lions Club helped and aided in it's early formation:
TOLLESBORO LIONS CLUB
Located at the Tollesboro Lions Club Fairgrounds and Community Park, KY 10, KY 9 ("AA" Hwy), and the Lions Club Road, Tollesboro, Lewis County, Kentucky.
SERVING THE TOLLESBORO COMMUNITY SINCE 1954
Biography of Melvin Jones, The founder of Lions Clubs International
Melvin Jones was born on January 13, 1879 in Fort Thomas, Arizona, the son of a United States Army captain who commanded a troop of scouts. Later, his father was transferred and the family moved east. As a young man, Melvin Jones made his home in Chicago, Illinois, became associated with an insurance firm and in 1913 formed his own agency.
He soon joined the Business Circle, a businessmen's luncheon group, and was shortly elected secretary. This group was one of many at that time devoted solely to promoting the financial interests of their membership. Because of their limited appeal, they were destined to disappear. Melvin Jones, then a 38-year-old Chicago business leader, had other plans.
"What if these men," Melvin Jones asked, "who are successful because of their drive, intelligence and ambition, were to put their talents to work improving their communities?" Thus, at his invitation, delegates from men's clubs met in Chicago to lay the groundwork for such an organization and on June 7, 1917, Lions Clubs International was born.
Melvin Jones eventually abandoned his insurance agency to devote himself full time to Lions at International Headquarters in Chicago. It was under his dynamic leadership that Lions clubs earned the prestige necessary to attract civic-minded members.
The association's founder was also recognized as a leader by those outside the association. One of his greatest honors was in 1945 when he represented Lions Clubs International as a consultant in San Francisco, California, at the organization of the United Nations.
Melvin Jones, the man whose personal code – "You can't get very far until you start doing something for somebody else" – became a guiding principle for public-spirited people the world over, died June 1, 1961 at 82 years of age.
The Lions Name
On June 7, 1917 at the invitation of Melvin Jones, delegates met in Chicago. The only point of contention was the selection of a name for the new organization. Melvin Jones researched the idea of calling the new organization Lions. He was convinced that the lion stood for strength, courage, fidelity and vital action. On a secret ballot the name Lions was chosen over several others.
The Lions Emblem
At the 1919 convention, there was a move to change the symbol, but a young attorney from Denver, Colorado rose to speak. His name was Halsted Ritter. "The name Lions stands not only for fraternity, good fellowship, strength of character and purpose, but above all, its combination of L-I-O-N-S heralds to the country the true meaning of citizenship: LIBERTY, INTELLIGENCE, OUR NATION'S SAFETY."
The January 1931 issue of THE LION Magazine featured this interpretation of the association's name:
Our name was not selected at random, neither was it a coined name. From time immemorial, the lion has been the symbol of all that was good, and because of the symbolism that name was chosen. Four outstanding qualities – Courage, Strength, Activity and Fidelity – had largely to do with the adoption of the name. The last mentioned of these qualities, Fidelity, has a deep and peculiar significance for all Lions. The lion symbol has been a symbol of Fidelity through the ages and among all nations, ancient and modern. It stands for loyalty to a friend, loyalty to a principle, loyalty to a duty, loyalty to a trust.
The emblem consists of a gold letter "L" on a circular area. Bordering this is a circular area with two Lion profiles facing away from the center. The word "Lions" appears at the top and "International" at the bottom. The Lions face both past and future – showing both pride of heritage and confidence in the future.
Pantone Matching System (PMS) is a popular color matching system used by the printing industry to print spot colors. Most applications that support color printing allow you to specify colors by indicating the Pantone name or number. This assures that you get the right color when the file is printed, even though the color may not look right when displayed on your monitor. The following are specified Pantone colors for Lion logos:
One color logo: PMS 287
Two color logo: PMS 287 and PMS 7406
On either side of this paragraph are two Lions Club emblems. At left, with the Lions in profile shown in a more "natural" coloration, is from old decals that used to be available (customized with the name of the club) from Lions International. Although originally provided by the Lions Club International organization (the Lions Club "Store"), it is not known whether this emblem is still considered by Lions Club International as an "official" emblem with regards to coloration and style. The image on the right represents the current customizable decals available from Lions International. Significantly different. Whether the image on the left still meets the Lions Club International "official" specifications, we think that it is nice to be able to provide this emblem if for no other reason that to include it as a "historical" view to show how the organization has evolved and changed over the years.
Lions Club International had 4 different rings designed to commemorate the 100th Year Anniversary, two styles for women and two styles for men, each offered in a choice of 4 metals (10K Yellow Gold, 10K White Gold, Sterling Silver, and Stainless Steel.
Today: Extending Our Reach
Lions Clubs International extends our mission of service every day – in local communities, in all corners of the globe. The needs are great and our services broad, including sight, health, youth, elderly, the environment and disaster relief. Our international network has grown to include over 200 countries and geographic areas.
The LIONS CLUB, HELEN KELLER and SIGHT CONSERVATION
Born in Tuscumbia, Alabama, USA, in 1880, Helen Keller developed a fever at 18 months of age that left her blind and deaf.
With the help of an exceptional teacher, Anne Mansfield Sullivan of the Perkins School for the Blind, Helen Keller learned sign language and braille. A few years later, she learned to speak. As an adult she became a tireless advocate for people with disabilities. And in 1925, she attended the Lions Clubs International Convention and challenged Lions to become "knights of the blind in the crusade against darkness."
The Lions accepted her challenge and our work ever since has included sight programs aimed at preventable blindness.
Helen Keller Day
In 1971, the Board of Directors of Lions Clubs International declared that June 1 would be remembered as Helen Keller Day. Lions around the world implement sight-related service projects on Helen Keller Day.
Helen Keller's Speech at 1925 International Convention
Cedar Point, Ohio, USA
June 30, 1925
Dear Lions and Ladies:
I suppose you have heard the legend that represents opportunity as a capricious lady, who knocks at every door but once, and if the door isn't opened quickly, she passes on, never to return. And that is as it should be. Lovely, desirable ladies won't wait. You have to go out and grab 'em.
I am your opportunity. I am knocking at your door. I want to be adopted. The legend doesn't say what you are to do when several beautiful opportunities present themselves at the same door. I guess you have to choose the one you love best. I hope you will adopt me. I am the youngest here, and what I offer you is full of splendid opportunities for service.
The American Foundation for the Blind is only four years old. It grew out of the imperative needs of the blind, and was called into existence by the sightless themselves. It is national and international in scope and in importance. It represents the best and most enlightened thought on our subject that has been reached so far. Its object is to make the lives of the blind more worthwhile everywhere by increasing their economic value and giving them the joy of normal activity.
Try to imagine how you would feel if you were suddenly stricken blind today. Picture yourself stumbling and groping at noonday as in the night; your work, your independence, gone. In that dark world wouldn't you be glad if a friend took you by the hand and said, "Come with me and I will teach you how to do some of the things you used to do when you could see?" That is just the kind of friend the American Foundation is going to be to all the blind in this country if seeing people will give it the support it must have.
You have heard how through a little word dropped from the fingers of another, a ray of light from another soul touched the darkness of my mind and I found myself, found the world, found God. It is because my teacher learned about me and broke through the dark, silent imprisonment which held me that I am able to work for myself and for others. It is the caring we want more than money. The gift without the sympathy and interest of the giver is empty. If you care, if we can make the people of this great country care, the blind will indeed triumph over blindness.
The opportunity I bring to you, Lions, is this: To foster and sponsor the work of the American Foundation for the Blind. Will you not help me hasten the day when there shall be no preventable blindness; no little deaf, blind child untaught; no blind man or woman unaided? I appeal to you Lions, you who have your sight, your hearing, you who are strong and brave and kind. Will you not constitute yourselves Knights of the Blind in this crusade against darkness?
I thank you.
To commemorate the 100th Years of Service of Lions Club International the US Government authorized the US Mint to mint special commemorative $1 silver coinage available in 2017 to coincide with the 100th Anniversary of the organization (Lions Clubs International Century of Service Commemorative Coin Act, H.R. 2139). Minted in 90% silver/10% copper, in two finishes (a Proof finish as well as an Uncirculated issue) and limited to a total not to exceed of 400,000 pieces. To the left is shown the obverse and reverse of the coin. The obverse has a portrait of Lions Club Founder Melvin Jones; the reverse has a pride of lions (male, female, cub). The coin is available in a Proof strike as well as in a Brilliant Uncirculated strike.
The Lions Club International website is accessable by the following link:
1967 - Lions Club International celebrates it's 50th Year, it's Golden Anniversary.
To celebrate this milestone achievement, special bronze/brass medals were made available and special 1917-1967 50 Years Golden Anniversary items were made for celebrating this achievement (napkins, placemats, decals, a small pocketknife, and medallions - obverse and reverse - are shown).
In addition to being a member of the Lions Club International, the Tollesboro Lions Club is a member of the Kentucky Lions Clubs, a part of District 43-Y. The Kentucky Lions Clubs maintains a website. A link to the State website follows: http://www.kentuckylions.org/index.html.
Lions Clubs throughout the Commonwealth of Kentucky promote Sight Conservation and the Kentucky Lions Eye Foundation (KLEF). The KLEF maintains a website accessible by the following link: http://kentuckylionseyefoundation.org/.