Lion Pride: Celebrating Society’s Partnership with Lions Clubs in our Region

Lions Club LogoI 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?  ~Helen Keller

Helen Keller spoke these stirring words at the 1925 Lions International Conference. Since that time, Lions around the world and right here in the Sacramento region have dedicated themselves to improving the lives of people living with blindness and low vision.

Local Lions Clubs were among the core group of volunteers who founded Society for the Blind in 1954. Their dedication and commitment to Society for the Blind and to people in our region with vision loss remains strong and vital as we near our 65th year of service.

The Lions Club International Foundation, established in 1968, provided a significant grant in 2008 to help with the construction of our current training center. The Northern California Lions Sight Association, which began in 1971, provided funding for our Low Vision Clinic to ensure that people in need of low vision eye healthcare have access to these services.

Especially significant is the partnership with local Lions Clubs. Last year, members of the Embarcadero, Senator, Midtown and Antelope Lions clubs donated their time at Society for the Blind events. Whether preparing a meal or assisting children who are engaging in Paralympic sport workshops, the Lions bring dedication and joy to their service.

In July, the Senator Lions Club established a Device Lending Library in our Low Vision Clinic. This Centennial Project of the Lions provides hand-held magnification and other low vision devices on loan for people who otherwise could not afford to purchase them.

Picture of Chelsea, Shari, and Doug at the Lion's Club MeetingJust last month, the Antelope Lions Club hosted a dinner benefiting the programs of Society. District Governor Doug Wight attended the event and is pictured here with Chelsea Gray and me. 

Lionism is represented on the board and staff at Society. Board member Steve Osterholt is a Centennial Lion, and I am a member of the Senator Lions Club. We are proud of Society’s decades-long partnership with the Lions and look forward to continuing to find new ways to work together in service to people living with low vision and blindness.