GORE BAY—The Gore Bay-Western Manitoulin Lions Club will soon be disbanding if membership isn’t increased in the next few months.
“We currently have 18 members, but we need more active members to join the club and help out,” stated Steve Gumb, president of the Lions Club in an interview the Recorder had with he and long time Lion Miriam Wailes last week. “We’re failing because we currently do not have enough active members to organize and host events.”
“It is at a point now that when we do hold an event, those who are running the event have to do so for the entire event. What we would like to do is have enough members that we could run two shifts of workers for these events,” said Mr. Gumb.
Ms. Wailes said that without more members of the community coming forward to join the Lions, “we will have to, unfortunately, disband at the end of this fiscal year. But we want to take care of events we have committed to already; before then.”
“We have been helping and supporting the community of Gore Bay and Western Manitoulin for over 30 years,” said Ms. Wailes. “Our mission is ‘to serve,’ but our membership is declining and we will be disbanding at the end of this fiscal year unless the membership can be built up.”
It was pointed out by Mr. Gumb that the Lions normally hold only two or three major events every year, and that members only have to provide a few hours of their time to help out.
The funds raised by the Lions during its 30 plus years of existence have supported such things as youth programs such as hockey, curling, soccer, kids camps (such as ‘send a kid to camp’) and Strawberry Point Christian Camp, Special Olympics trips, CNIB Lake Joseph Camp, Camp Dorset (dialysis camp for families), Mindemoya Help Centre/Food Bank/Christmas boxes, MSS bursaries, medical equipment and new roof for the Gore Bay Medical Centre, digital x-ray system, generator for the medical centre, generator for United Church-designated as a gathering centre in emergencies, CNIB Eye Van, support for families after other emergencies, hearing aids, eye glasses, wheelchairs, medical equipment for the home, support for travel/accommodation for hospital trips, dog guides, Sea Cadets, kids playground, Noble Park, repairs to arena, Angel Bus, Fire Hall/fire truck for Gore Bay and Gordon, Christmas gifts for needy residents in the Lodge, and many other programs.
The Lions Club, “is a fun group to be part of, and are committed to help the community,” stated Mr. Gumb.
The Lions have scheduled a meeting for the evening of February 28 at 6:30 pm in the basement of the Royal Canadian Legion Branch 514 in Gore Bay. “We are holding the meeting on February 28 to see how many people are interested in joining the club help us to continue to operate and fundraise,” said Mr. Gumb. He noted that the Lions are not only available to adults. “We are always willing to take on young people who are looking to build up the number of hours they need, 40, to get their high school diploma.”
“We are an open club, to both men and women,” said Ms. Wailes. “And are fees are the lowest of any charity organization in Canada.” Those fees are $45 for individual members and $60 for a family.