SCHOOL BEAT

The Rockford Leo Club

by LION MIKE WESTGATE
Assistant Principal
Rockford Freshman Center

Lions Clubs International is the world’s premier community service organization, with over 1.3 million members around the world dedicated to helping people in need. Leo clubs are part of the Lions international network with over 5,500 Leo clubs in more than 130 nations. The Rockford Lions Club is proud to sponsor our new Leo club.

On February 29, 2012, over 100 students from North and East Rockford middle schools, the Rockford Freshman Center and high school were officially inducted at a ceremony in the Rockford High School auditorium. It was an impressive ceremony with esteemed speakers including Dr. Mike Shibler, superintendent of Rockford Public Schools, Lion Rock Wood, the vice district governor, Lion Ken Frary, the district governor, and Lion Dr. Gary Anderson, the Lions Club International director. It is the largest Leo club ever chartered in the state of Michigan.

The Rockford Leo club will be a service-minded organization that will provide assistance to the Rockford schools and community and give its members a global identity. The Leo club motto, “Leadership, Experience, Opportunity,” says it all. Leos develop skills as project organizers, time managers and team leaders. They discover how teamwork and cooperation can bring exciting changes to the community. And most importantly, Leos make friends and feel the rewards of community service.

Several Rockford Public Schools administrators are Lions and serve as advisors and mentors to the Leo club students in their buildings. The Leos have already been involved with many positive service projects such as:

•            planted over 200 trees on school grounds;

•            volunteered with seniors at Bishop Hills Elder Care;

•            donations/toy drive for Toys for Tots;

•            raised funds for Thirsting to Serve and Kids Food Basket;

•            volunteered in third-grade classrooms at Meadow Ridge;

•            cleaning up Rockford’s oldest cemetery, Pioneer Cemetery.

Future community projects include working at the Start of Summer Celebration, the Farmer’s Market and helping to reclaim the old Rum Creek Mill Pond skating rink.

If you or your teenager are interested in getting involved in an outstanding organization, please contact your building assistant principal.

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