Knowle and Dorridge Lions Club celebrated their 40th successful year in September when the club held its annual presentation evening at the Greswolde Hotel in Knowle.
Welcoming supporters and sponsors Past President Richard Buckley announced that the club had raised over £69,000 for charity over the past 12 months, primarily through its Knowle Fun Run, Festive Walk and Bike Ride. He thanked all the sponsors saying ‘It’s great for our club of only 20 volunteer Lions to celebrate such success again, but without the help from companies like yourselves our events would never realise so much for charity.’ He also emphasised how his Club needed new members if it is going to sustain this tremendous fundraising and community support in future years.
Chris KiddleMorris, the chair of the clubs community services committee, then illustrated some of the projects the club has embraced including Message in a Bottle, Great Spec Collect where over 1,000 pairs had been donated in just over a month for recycling in Ghana, Nigeria & Nepal, supporting the elderly with 3 coaches having recently returned from a day at Ludlow market, an afternoon tea party for 140 next month and youth travel bursaries.
He went on to introduce two winners of the club’s Youth Travel Bursaries. Amy Yeates from Henley in Arden gave a really interesting presentation on her 8 months spent in Malaysia working as a teaching assistant providing conversational English tutoring. Amy Fortnam had spent 14 weeks in the Cape Town area undertaking Social Justice research and proving advice to those living in the townships and prisons. Thanking them for their presentations Chris emphasised the life-changing effect on them
Organiser of last July’s Heart of England Bike Ride, Paul Wheatley, presented British Heart Foundation fundraising manager Donna Stokes with a cheque for £9,391 for their share of the £13,419 raised at the event. Donna said how grateful the BHF are to Knowle and Dorridge Lions for all the hard work they put in organising the event every year, and is looking forward to next July’s Ride from Packwood NT House.’
Chris KiddleMorris explained that the Club retained 30% of raised funds to be spent on locally determined causes. During the year his committee had spent over £18,000 on a variety of local and not so local projects as well as those for youth and elderly. These included donations to the local Fast Aid Group, 4th Knowle Sea Scouts, 1st Knowle Scouts, Northleigh House, MyAware, Chernobyl Children’s Project, Meningitis Now, Cake 4 Casualties and refurbishment of Knowle Knot Garden. A full list of organisations supported this year and how to nominate a local cause can be found at www.knowleanddorridgelions.com/charities
Richard then presented cheques totalling £33,563, primarily from the Knowle Fun Run and Festive Walk to the 3 nominated charities for the clubs 40th year: Prostate Cancer UK, Motor Neurone Disease, Birmingham St Mary’s Hospice, who in turn thanked the Lions for their tremendous achievements and the sponsors for their support.
For next year the club will retain half of funds raised to focus on local causes, and is nominating 2 charities as major beneficiaries the forthcoming Lions Festive Walk on Wednesday 27 December and Knowle Fun Run on Sunday 20 May 2018 – Headway Birmingham & Solihull and Breast Cancer Haven. Their fundraisers took the opportunity to tell everyone about why the monies to be raised will make such a difference to their charities.
Anyone interested in joining the Lions should contact this year’s President Brian Burgess on 08458 335894 or visit www.knowleanddorridgelions.com for more details.
Photo: Past President Richard Buckley with charity fundraisers and their cheques: Peter Woodward, Prostate Cancer UK; Lucy Watkins Birmingham St Mary’s Hospice; Sue Curry, Motor Neurone Disease; Donna Stokes, British Heart Foundation
More photos and editorial enquiries to Dave Carter, 01527 894073