The Lions Club of Newcastle completed their Othandweni Creche project in partnership with The Edu Centre. This outstanding project, driven by Club President Barbara Elliott has provided a brand new crèche/school for approximately 80 underprivileged children in the rural area of Othandweni. These children can now attend school in a safe environment where they are finally protected from the elements.
Teams from several schools battle it out annually in the Durban East Coast Lions Club's Future Wise Inter-School Quiz. The event is usually held at New West Secondary school in Durban. The quiz will tests pupil's knowledge on a range of topics, from environment and energy, to history, politics and general news awareness. The quiz is organised by the East Coast Lions Club and Kwazulu-Natal Provincial Department of Education.
The first South Coast Highland Gathering was held on June the 15th 1963, as part of a fund raising event for Umbogintwini Primary School. The Highland Gathering was held as a joint event involving the Amanzimtoti Agricultural Show. In 1970 the venue for the event was moved to Athlone Park Primary School and in 1972 to Kingsway High School. In 1973 a committee involving Pat Dalziel organised the event on wasteland by the river, then in 1974 and 1975 in front of the municipal buildings. In 1976 the Amanzimtoti Lions became involved and the event moved to its current venue at Hutchison Park. In 1990 the Lions took over full responsibility for the event. The event is reputedly the largest of its specific type in the Southern Hemisphere and enjoys attendances exceeding 10,000 most years weather permitting.
All camps have a doctor, nurse, diabetic counsellor and this year they have a third year dietetics student who is herself a Type 1 diabetic to be with the children as it is a huge responsibility. Every year they also have a senior boy and girl who have both been to many camps in the past to assist the medical team with the children. They monitor the children’s blood sugar testing and then discuss the results with the doctor and nurse. This works very well as the children often feel that they can talk to the seniors about any problems that they might have. Diabetes South Africa PMB Branch have stood by the organisers for many years and without their help and expertise, these camps would not have taken place. Many of the children who attend these camps are sponsored by various Lions clubs from around the District.
The Lions' Agricultural Show, the Lions Hibiscus Coast Show, or the South Coast Lions' Show - whatever it's name has been, the Hibiscus Coast's Annual Trade Show has always been a spectacular success. The annual show has, for the past 3 decades, been run by the Port Shepstone Lions Club and is now held at the Port Shepstone Country Club. All the proceeds of this event are ploughed back into local community assistance projects.
The Helen Bishop Home is an orthopaedic after-care and rehabilitation home for children with physical disabilities between the ages of 0-18 years. The home is situated near the Kimberley city centre. The home receives regular and ongoing vital support from the Kimberley Lions Club.
Re Tlameleng is a school that provides specialised education for children with physical disabilities, visual impairment and hearing impairment. The school is situated on the outskirts of Kimberley. The school was started by the Kimberley Lions Club together with a grant from L.C.I.F. Lions are directly involved with the governing of the school.
Embocraft conducts skills training to develop unique craft products as an income generation project for community members throughout Kwazulu-Natal. These products are marketed through the centre. The centre was started by the Gillitts and Kloof Lions Clubs together with a grant from L.C.I.F. Lions are directly involved with the running of the centre.
In November 2003, it was brought to the attention of Port Shepstone Lions Club that there is a desperate need to establish a formal, well equipped Audiology Clinic on the Kwazulu Natal South Coast. Patients with hearing disorders could only be satisfactorily tested in Durban, some 140 kilometres away. The majority of patients are from rural and peri_urban areas, with little or no resources even to travel such distances. The Murchison Mission Hospital, located 10km inland from Port Shepstone, offered to house such a clinic within their premises. At the time, a monthly clinic was held using a roving Audiologist who served the whole district, referring patients to specialists in Durban if hearing impairment were indicated. The facilities available to the Audiologist were inadequate to identify hearing disorders with the equipment available. The Lions Club of Port Shepstone received an L.C.I.F. Grant to assist with the costs of equipping the Clinic with the latest state-of-the-art audiology equipment. During May 2005, the Audiology Clinic was officially opened.
The Annual Comrades Marathon refreshment station at the top of Cowies Hill, has been traditionally manned by the Cowies Hill Lions Club together with help from friends, family, sister clubs and anyone who doesn’t mind getting up early enough in the morning for over 30 years now! Only two other organisations, namely Nedbank and the Seals Swimming Club can claim to better this record.
In the event of an "up run" (Durban to Pietermaritzburg), Cowies Hill Lions members can be found setting up from as early as 4am. Depending of whether it is an up or down run, the first runners come past just on 7am and the all 16 000 runners pass within an hour and a half of the first. Total chaos reigns for this short period of time and then the massive task of cleaning up the road begins. By 9am everything is over and the station is soon shrouded in a veil of smoke emanating from the breakfast skottles. The sound of popping champagne corks and vibrant banter with passing stragglers mingles with the crisp sound of frying bacon and eggs in the pan. This project involves a huge amount of organising, especially, on the couple of days before and then following up the days thereafter.
As the start of its community development, 15 years ago, the Lions Club of Hibberdene took over the running of the Hibberdene Clinic from the Lions Club of Port Shepstone. At that stage, some 25 people per month picked up their chronic medication at Port Shepstone Provincial Hospital's distribution point in Hibberdene and the Lions' main involvement was to provide tea and cakes for the patients. The later provision by the municipality of space for an eye clinic and the acquisition by the Lions of the necessary equipment, meant that a visiting optometrist could cater for the needs of the Hibberdene community in this respect once a month. Additional space also meant that the clinic distributing medicines could graduate from the provision of tea and cakes to the testing of blood pressure, blood sugar and cholesterol. A fully-equipped dental clinic now enables a visiting dentist to tend to Hibberdene patients twice monthly. In all, the Lions' clinic now caters for the needs of more than 800 patients a month and requires the services of up to 15 Lions every Wednesday, plus the visiting nurse, doctor, optometrist and dentist.
During April 1986, the Lions Club of Port Shepstone staged its first Leadership Retreat for Aiken Park High School, a school for pupils with learning disabilities with a large number of welfare cases. The first course was held over a single day. Such was the success of this course that it was expanded the following year into a two day course and, by their own request, a course was also organised for Port Shepstone High School. The two separate courses were run over back-to-back weekends in January. In 1988 Aiken Park High School requested that we run their course in November as this course would be used for determining their final selection for the prefect body for the following year. With the closure of Aiken Park High School in 1993, all efforts were concentrated on Port Shepstone High School. The course was shifted to October as this co-incided with the nominations of the new prefect body. This course has since been instumental in deciding who the Head Boy and Head Girl for the following year will be.