Across the globe, Lions clubs are more than 1.35 million members strong. But they all share one core belief — community is what we make it…even if that community is 1,700 miles away.
Following Hurricane Sandy, the Summit Lions Club received numerous emails and phone calls from other member clubs around the country, all offering assistance in the wake of the storm. One such call came from the Downtown Founder Lions Club in Austin, Texas. After hearing about the hardships in New York and New Jersey, their club raised more than $1,000 to send to Summit to help those affected by the storm. The Summit Lions matched the $1,000 gift, and the clubs agreed to contribute the combined amount – more than $2,000 – to SAGE Eldercare for their Meals On Wheels program.
“We heard about all the difficulties after the storm, particularly the need to help restock food supplies; so we contacted the Summit club and volunteered to help,” said Austin Lion Tommy Cowan, whose daughter lives in the Summit area. “We are big supporters of the Meals On Wheels program locally, so we know how much good this organization can do with a few extra dollars – particularly when times are tough.”
On behalf of both member clubs, the Summit Lions presented the combined gift to SAGE Executive Director Jessica Rosenzweig Gruber at their December meeting.
With power outages and cold temperatures, the weeks following the hurricane were definitely difficult in Summit; however, they were particularly hard on elderly residents and those with limited mobility. Despite the challenges, SAGE Eldercare’s Meals On Wheels program delivered 550 meals to area seniors in the two days immediately following the storm, and volunteers continued to check on residents throughout the week to make sure they were safe.
“We are grateful to both Lions Clubs for their support and generosity. The $2,000 gift will allow us to supplement our three-county Meals On Wheels program by providing shelf-stable pantry items to nearly 250 area seniors,” stated Jessica Rosenzweig Gruber, Executive Director of SAGE.