Lions Clubs International has impacted the lives of millions all over the world. Through signature projects, Lions are able to help in the areas of sight, health, youth, the elderly, the environment and disaster relief.
Founded in 1917, Lions are best known for fighting blindness; But Lions also feed the hungry, aid seniors and the disabled, and care for the environment. Lions are a global service network of volunteers that make a difference in our local communities.
Lions Clubs throughout the world are currently answering a challenge, the Centennial Service Challenge, to provide 200,000,000 hours of service in 4 traditional areas of Lions service—Youth, Hunger, Vision and the Environment— to celebrate Lions Club International’s Centennial anniversary in 2017.
In 1925 Helen Keller challenged Lions to become “Knights of the blind.” Since then Lions everywhere have been committed to blindness prevention, and have been recognized throughout the world for their service to the blind and visually impaired.
By conducting vision screenings, equipping hospitals and clinics, distributing medicine and raising awareness of eye disease, Lions work toward the goal of providing vision for all. Through programs such as SightFirst, Lions have helped provide more than 147 million treatments for river blindness, 10 million doses of a sight–saving drug to prevent trachoma, and eye screenings for more than 15 million children. SightFirst targets the major causes of blindness: low vision, trachoma, river blindness, childhood blindness, diabetic retinopathy and glaucoma. Lions have raised more than $415 million for the SightFirst initiative since it was launched in 1990.
Lions community projects often support children and local schools through scholarships, recreation and mentoring. Internationally, Lions offer many programs to empower youth, including the Peace Poster Contest; youth camps and exchanges; and Lions Quest, a positive youth development program.
Leo clubs help young people develop leadership skills while impacting their communities through service. There are approximately 157,000 Leos and 6,000 Leo clubs in more than 200 countries and geographic areas worldwide.
Lions Clubs International Foundation (LCIF), the official charitable arm of Lions Clubs International, assists Lions clubs with global and large–scale local humanitarian projects that individual CLubs can not otherwise care for on thier own. Since 1968, LCIF has awarded more than $811 million in grants saving sight, supporting youth, providing disaster relief and meeting humanitarian needs. Our local community has been the beneficiary of several LCIF grants. Through the Foundation, Lions are able to extend their reach from local communities to the global community in order to serve those who need us most.