|My husband, Jim, belongs to the Okauchee
Lions Club. I am a member of Okauchee Lioness Club. We are
very proud of all the great work our organizations are doing to help the
vision impaired. We recently attended our district convention.
We were very impressed by the large donations made to the Wisconsin Lions
|The Wisconsin Lions Foundation touches thousands
of lives. Club donations support the majority of the Foundation’s programs.
In addition, people outside Lionsim make contributions to our efforts.
These take the form of memorials of deceased friends and family members.
The Foundation also receives cash gifts to offset the operational costs.
Many people have been impressed by activities and have willed sums of money,
securities, or land for the improvement of the programs. The Foundation
has a 501 (c)(3) IRS tax status that allows donations to be deductible
from both state and federal taxes as allowed by law.
|The Foundation maintains a camp for the
visually impaired in northern Wisconsin. Children and adults with
vision impairment can spend time here at no cost to them. It is such
a memorable experience for these people who could not have this opportunity
if it was not provided by the wonderful donations of the Lions and Lioness
|“Blind kids can’t go to outdoor camps and stuff
like that…” This remark by a teenager started it all over 40 years ago.
That chance comment, overheard by a Wisconsin Lions Club member, has turned
dream into reality for thousands of youth and adults with disabilities
|Lions Clubs throughout Wisconsin generously
support the camp and its programs, along with help from individual contributors.
Contributions are appreciated to ensure the ongoing camp operation
|The goals and objectives of the camp reflect
a true commitment to excellence. Its primary objective is to provide a
fun, safe and memorable camping experience that will have a positive impact
on the camper's life. This is accomplished through a carefully designed
program which focuses on each camper's individual and unique needs.
|The Lions Club also support the leader
dog program. Leader Dogs for the Blind was founded in 1939 by a group
of Michigan Lions. Their goal was to train dogs to lead the blind and to
provide facilities and means whereby trained dogs could be matched to a
blind master. The nonprofit organization is served by a national board
of 30 trustees. The training school and executive offices are located in
Rochester, Michigan. Over ten thousand blind people have become self-sufficient
through the use of a Leader Dog. The dormitory stands as a tribute to the
many Lions Clubs who have unselfishly given their time and money to make
the Leader Dog School what it is today.
|Lions are recognized worldwide for their
service to the blind and visually impaired. This service began when Helen
Keller challenged the Lions to become "knights of the blind in the crusade
against darkness" during the association's 1925 international convention.
|Today, in addition to their international
SightFirst program, Lions extend their commitment to sight conservation
through countless local efforts.
|Lions Clubs International, which has been
collecting and recycling used eyeglasses for more than 60 years, is the
world's largest service club organization with 1.4 million members in more
than 43,000 clubs in 185 countries. The association, founded
in Chicago in 1917, joins men and women in community service with special
emphasis on aiding the blind and visually impaired.
|Lion Clubs across the country collect used
eye glasses in various locations throughout their communities. Used
eye glasses are sent to the Lions Eyeglass Recycling Center in Muncie Indiana.
Volunteers sort the glasses, separating sunglasses, broken glasses and
single lenses from intact pairs. A lensometer is used to determine
the prescription of the glasses. Glasses are cleaned and packaged
according to prescription. Prepared glasses are stored in a warehouse
until requested for a eyeglass dispensing mission. Volunteers sort
glasses in preparation of the fist day of the mission. More than
100 migrant farm workers line up early to ensure they receive free eyeglasses.
Recipients have their eyes tested using an auto refractor. A recipient
is fitted with glasses that were donated by local communities. After
a few adjustment he is able to read clearly the first time in years.
The glasses will help the recipient maintain employment allowing him to
continue to support his family.
|Lions Clubs across the country are committed
to supporting the local Eye
Banks. A team of professionals and volunteers are dedicated to
restoring the Gift of Sight through transplantation of corneas,
research to advance the knowledge and treatment of eye diseases, and education
to increase donations of human eyes after death. This is all possible
because of the support given by local Lions Clubs.
|The Wisconsin Lions Foundation and Prevent
Blindness Wisconsin combined forces to help the fight against blindness.
Through the efforts of local Lions and Lioness Clubs, screenings are taking
place in their local day cares and preschools. Vision problems affect one
if every five school children and one in every twenty preschool age children.
Donor & Eye Banks