Lions defy effects of pandemic and give £17,000 to good causes

Honiton Lions

Honiton Lions, from left to right: Lion Kevin Linsdell, Lion Nigel Cray, Lion John Ward, Lion President Brian Richards, Len Styles, Lion Dave Rickard, Lion Tom Boucher and Lion Jamie Love - Credit: Honiton Lions

Since the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic in March last year, Honiton Lions, like all other charitable organisations, have found it difficult to raise money for charities. 

Following the lockdowns they have only held a small number of fundraising events, raising a fraction of the money that is normally raised. 

This, however, has not prevented the Lions from supporting many charities and good causes. Using their reserves they have donated approximately £17,000 since the arrival of the pandemic. 

During the first lockdown over £2000 was donated and shared by organisations such as TRIP, Honiton Food Bank and Random Kitchen, all of whom were assisting the local community during the first lockdown. Other organisations to receive financial support were the Children’s Hospice South West, Millwater School, Honiton 55+ Club and local primary schools. 

Towards the end of last year £1,500 was handed out to several charities including the Royal British Legion Poppy Appeal. 

Early in the current year the Lions purchased a cranial helmet for a disabled child at a cost of £1,000. They gave a similar amount to each of the following charities – Hospiscare, Devon Air Ambulance, Motor Neurone Disease Association and TRIP. They also supported third world countries, making donations to provide eye camps and water wells. 

Responding to an appeal from Creative Opportunities for Independence (COFI), established to teach work skills to adults with learning disabilities, the Lions provided the group with a purpose built work bench and tools at a cost of £600. They also gave donations to Beth Edwards from Hawkchurch and Len Styles from Honiton, both of whom have undertaken “extreme challenge events” to raise money for cancer charities. 

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At a recent business meeting of Honiton Lions Club its members agreed to spend almost £6,000 to support 14 charities and good causes. Among the recipients nominated to receive funds are Force, Hospiscare, Devon Air Ambulance, Children’s Hospice South West, Exeter Leukaemia Fund (ELF) and diabetic charity, Direct. 

Honiton Lions was formed in 1977 and have raised approximately £400,000 since that time. This has enabled the club to support a vast number of charities and community projects. If the current level of support for the community is to continue the club will need to recruit more members.

So, if there is anyone who may be interested in joining the Lions or wishing to obtain more information about the organisation they should contact Brian Richards on 01404 43738. 

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