There are a lot of great things about being a Lion. Not only are we the biggest service organization in the World, but we are the most diverse civic organization as well. We have our footprints in a number of unique areas throughout the United States helping with disaster relief, hunger, diabetes and of course, vision needs. But your local club can be even more diverse in another way.
Think about your passions. What population really means the most to your club? Does your club really become inspired when doing projects when working together with the local police? Does your club tend to focus programs on agendas based on veterans? Are you consistently looking for ways to partner with business groups?
Lions clubs should not feel as though they can fill every niche in the community with just one club. This is where your branch clubs come to your rescue. If you have a few Lions in your club who have a heart for a special population, rather than lose them as Lions, have them start a branch club in your area.
Why a branch club? You only need 5 members to start a branch club and it’s a healthy start to forming a new club. A branch club will have it’s own executive officers which meet to plan their own projects. One member of the regular club will be the liaison to the branch club. With 5 new members, you have a brand new little club.
Here are some ideas to help you start branch clubs in your area:
Firefighters: Firefighters are full of compassion and naturally community driven. They speak their own language and understand a code. They will work better with others who understand their needs. If you have someone in your club who is a firefighter, work with him or her about becoming a liaison to a new branch from your club. He/she can bring in other firefighters to the branch club. They can work their own projects and grow the club.
Veterans: There is a special call for Lions clubs that serve veterans. Many veterans wish to give back to their communities in ways that benefit those who served our country. If you have someone in your club who is passionate about that cause, ask him/her to start a branch club made up of veterans in your area. This can quickly grow into a thriving successful club with a huge impact on your community.
Police: Police are often misunderstood due to the media but if you have ever worked with officers on a regular basis, you will know that many officers also have a heart for giving back to the community. Many of them are involved in projects to help the hungry or special Olympics.
Here are some special interest Lions clubs from other areas:
- Hawaii Lions Ballroom Dancing Club – supporting arts for teens
- Benton Bay Athletic Lions Club- supporting athletes for college
- Executive Women’s Lions Club of El Paso Texas – offers mentoring and computer skills for disadvanted women
- Middleton Children First Lions Club – works with 3-5 year olds to prepare them for kindergarten
- San Francisco Bay Area Veterans Lions – sharing and promoting a bond in service to the community and country
- Fairbanks Snowmobile Lions Club – encouraging fun and family time by staging races on snowmobiles
- Alaska Sports Car Club – provides year round racing events to support Alaskan Lions related charities
- Starkville Multi Culture Club – focus on culture bonding to provide service
- Texas Panhandle Motorcycle Club – riders focusing on serving the community
- Lubbock Tech Club – support technology uses to fundraise and serve the community
- Mountain Hiking Club – supporting health and encouraging an active lifestyle for combating diabetes; supporting the environment
- El Paso Special Needs Club
- Philidelphia Law Enforcement
- DC Special Olympics
Hopefully this list gave you some new ideas. Clubs all over the US are focusing on special interests to build better, stronger clubs. If you have an idea about a branch club in your area, please reach out so we can get it started.