To date, the Langley Lions has donated more than $50,000 to the Langley Christmas Bureau through the years, the most recent contribution coming in the form of a timely $8,200 cheque.
In the past five years, the Lions have made significant contributions to the local charity, whose solo purpose is to coordinate sponsorships and provide hampers to less fortunate families in Langley.
The donation is timely, given the bureau is facing a suspected increase in recipient families this year (due to an influx of Syrian refugees and a general increase in demand) plus an earlier than normal deadline that will force them to buy more toys this time around.
Each year at this time, for the four weekends leading up to Christmas, members and friends of the Langley Lions volunteer in excess of 250 hours to a kettle-style donation drive, explained said club president Nash Shivji.
“We collect donations from the good people of Langley and the surrounding area, and present them to the Christmas bureau at this time of year when they are just starting up and can make best use of the funds.”
This year’s campaign begins this weekend, on Saturday, Nov. 26, and will continue Dec. 3, 10, and 17 weekends at the Willoughby Save-On-Foods and the Brookswood Buy-Low Foods stores, Shivji said.
“There’s nothing like the feeling of giving back and helping neighbors in need,” said Shivji.
“We encourage anyone interested in helping make a difference to visit us at one of our two locations. We will also be giving away Magic Reindeer Dust to the children so that they can help Santa’s reindeer find their homes,” he added.
The Langley Lions Club has been serving the Langley community for more than 70 years.
“Lions are people you know – we’re neighbours, friends and family,” Shivji said. “We’re volunteers who enjoy making a difference in the lives of others and having fun doing so.”
To learn more about the Lion’s Christmas kettle-like project or the Langley Lions Club, people can email: info.LangleyLions@gmail.com or visit the club’s website at www.langleylions.ca.
Langley Lions Club meets at 6:30 p.m. on the first and third Thursday of each month at the West Langley Hall.
“Where there’s a need, there’s a Lion,” Shivji said.
Lions Clubs International is the largest service club organization in the world. The 1.4 million members perform valuable service in 210 countries and geographic areas around the globe.Lions are friends, family and neighbors who share a core belief: community is what we make it. Since 1917, Lions clubs have aided the blind and visually impaired, championed youth initiatives and strengthened local communities through hands-on service and humanitarian projects. For more information about Lions Clubs International, visit lionsclubs.org.