Letter to the editor: Thank you from the Camden Lion’s Club

Posted:  Monday, November 27, 2017 - 1:30pm
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Dear Editor,

The Camden Lion's Club members would like to give a heartfelt "thank you" for the support of the Camden community. When you entrust your returnable bottles and cans to us at the transfer station, you enable our community service mission. The Lions sort these contributions twice a week and plow the money right back into our community.

The Lions are perhaps more visible to the community during holidays. We install the American flags that line the downtown for patriotic holidays. We plant and maintain the war memorial flower bed. We provide the funding for the holiday star on the Mt. Battie tower. We donate and install the Christmas tree on the village green. We light this tree on the evening of December 1 during Christmas By the Sea—along with manning a Lions' booth near the library that gives away cookies and warm drinks. Less visible are the Thanksgiving and Christmas food baskets that we provide. Or, our donation to Wreaths Across America, where holiday wreaths from Maine are laid on graves at the National Cemetery in Arlington, Virginia.

The Lions strive to foster our community children. We sponsor the Leos at the high school, who, in turn, sponsor an African student, donate yearly school supplies to those who need them, and who will have a booth during the Christmas By the Sea evening celebration. This year the Lions awarded $8000 in scholarships to students to help defray their upcoming college expenses. We made donations to Five Town Football, Five Town Little League, and to the high school Hockey program. We donated to the Big Brothers/Big Sisters program. We participate in the yearly Lions Club International Peace Poster contest and make awards to our local winning students to encourage both their vision and their art. One student's poster is chosen to go on to the Maine state Lions organization competition.

In 1925 Helen Keller challenged the Lions Club International to make a commitment to help those with vision problems. That commitment is taken very seriously to this day. We collect thousands of pairs of eyeglasses each year in our area and turn them over to the state Lions recycling center where they are sorted and distributed to those in need.

This year we made local donations to the Area Interfaith Outreach (AIO) food pantry, the Camden Area District Nursing, Camden-Rockport Historical Society, Coastal Navigators, Hospitality House, Lifeflight, Look for the Helpers, the PenBay YMCA, Toys for Tots, and Window Dressers. We also made a donation to Lions International for hurricane relief.

Lions do other work in our community—work that does not necessarily involve money. One motto we have is "Where there's a NEED, there's a LION." Another is "Not above you, not beneath you, but with you." So, when you entrust your bottle and cans to us, you can be sure that we are making good use of your trust. Again, we thank you for your donations.

Box Oxton
The Camden Lions Club