Before the Arvada Lions Club went inactive about a year ago, the group accumulated a long list of accomplishments, from sponsoring camping experiences for individuals with disabilities to helping …
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Before the Arvada Lions Club went inactive about a year ago, the group accumulated a long list of accomplishments, from sponsoring camping experiences for individuals with disabilities to helping fund the creation of the Rocky Mountain Lions Eye Institute.
And after the club went inactive, Robert Storrs set a goal to rebuild the club during his time as president of the Golden Lions Club.
“In any community, there are more needs than there are service organizations,” he said. “And the Lions is the largest service organization in the world. Not only is that a positive, but it’s also enjoyable for the members to be with other Lions.”
The Lions Club is an international 501(c)(4) community service organization with approximately 1.4 million members, according to the organization’s site. The Lions were formed in Chicago in 1917 and have since spread to more than 200 countries worldwide, with a number of organizations based in Colorado.
The Arvada Lions were formed more than 70 years ago but, after dwindling to two members, went inactive in 2018, Roy Donaldson said. Donaldson is a district advisor for Denver area Lions Clubs.
Now, Storrs, Donaldson and others are working to bring the group back to life, starting with community meetings in January. The meetings will be held at noon and again at 4:30 p.m., Jan. 7 at the Arvada Public Library, 7525 W. 57th Ave.
Donaldson said the purpose of the meetings is gauging community interest, identifying needs in Arvada and “explaining what Lionism is all about.”
“This is for any civic-minded person in the Arvada community who wants to give time and effort to meeting the needs of the city,” he said. “Especially for those ages 45 through 65, this is a way they could spend time on their weekends.”
To preserve the old club’s charter, the club must gain 10 new members by the end of January, Storrs and Donaldson said. If fewer than 10 people sign up, the club will likely become a branch of the Golden club before building to 20 members, when it will establish itself as a standalone club.
The club members themselves will set their priorities and decide on service projects, but Donaldson suggested that restarting a program the old club ran, which offered free vision exams to preschoolers, might be one of the first projects.
Members will meet monthly or bimonthly in addition to completing service projects, Storrs said. Meeting times and quarterly dues will be set by the club, with Storrs estimating membership could cost around $10 per month.
Anyone is welcome to attend one of the two January meetings, Donaldson said.
“This is a good way of finding someone you can work with to make a difference,” he said. “It’s a worldwide fellowship.”
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