For those of you who have yet to make a New Year’s resolution or have already broken one, there is still time to make one or add another. You may want to try to join an organization. While there are plenty locally, we will hone in on the Riverside Township Lions Club this week.
Founded in 1917 by a Chicago business man named Melvin Jones, within three years the Lions became an international organization. It is now the largest service club organization with international headquarters based in Oak Brook.
Locally, the Riverside Township Lions Club has been a presence for 65 years. Open to both men and women, the club meets monthly at the Scottish Home in North Riverside for either a luncheon or dinner meeting, which also includes a program of some type.
Club members can be seen during the July 4 festivities in Riverside where they hold their annual raffle. At other times of the year the club hosts a candy sale and their big annual fundraiser, the chicken dinner in April.
This year the dinner will have a special meaning, as the club will be celebrating 65 years of service in the township. What people don’t always see are members assisting in sight programs, vision screenings and eye banks. If you have ever seen the boxes located at various places collecting used eyeglasses, it is the Lions Club collecting them. They then distribute the glasses to those in need. It is not unusual for the club to fulfill a request for someone in need of vision equipment.
Funds raised by the organization also are distributed to local groups including scout troops and PeopleCare just to name a few. Groups who would like to be considered for funds can submit a request. It will be reviewed by the philanthropy committee for distribution.
As with most organizations and clubs, the ability to provide help to others and working with others is a reward itself to members. The friendships that are made are a benefit to all members of all ages and both men and women. Full disclosure: I’m a longtime member of the Lions Club.
Currently one of the larger clubs in the area, the Riverside Township Lions Club is looking to increase its membership. Those who are interested in learning more about the club may contact the Lions Club’s president, Olga Sylvester, at 447-4600 or the third vice president and membership chairman, Bob Lifka, at 447-0869.
It would be a good resolution to join.