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Dec 06 2015

2nd Vice District Governor’s Message

Lion Diane Melnick 2nd Vice District Governor Lion Bob Melnick, IPDG Partner in Service

Lion Diane Melnick
2nd Vice District Governor
Lion Bob Melnick, IPDG
Partner in Service

Last month was an exciting and busy month for me. I had the opportunity to attend the Advanced Lions Leadership Institute (ALLI) in Shaumburg, IL along with several other Lions from our Multi-District (MD) including Lion Sheryl Shemet our District Global Leadership (GLT) Coordinator. It provided us with an exceptional learning opportunity that was mixed with a lot of fun and the chance to meet other Lions sharing our same desire for knowledge. I know Lion Sheryl is excited to share our experiences with you along with information on upcoming training opportunities. I encourage you to consider taking advantage of these opportunities.

Immediate Past District Governor (IPDG) Bob and I were invited to attend a demonstration at the Gainesville Center for Independent Living of North Florida. The demonstration was given by a new company of a wrist band that can augment and work alongside other aids to empower independence and mobility for those living with impaired vision.

The device is a sonar smart bracelet that uses ultrasound technology to provide more safety, improve awareness and increase orientation of surroundings as well as mobility and allows the wearer to feel more independent and confident. Using sonar type technology the user can point or scan the sensor on the wrist band in the direction they are moving. There are two (2) modes of operation one for indoor or confined spaces and an outdoor mode and can be set for a distance of 7 feet or 14 feet. The device can detect open doorways, etc. and when detecting anything lying ahead of you the vibrations will go faster the closer you get. There is also a haptic clock and tags which use beacon technology for use on items that are easily lost, such as keys, luggage, etc.

I was excited several months ago when I shared information on the haptic shoes that are being used by the visually impaired around the world but I would not have missed THIS demonstration for the world. There were over a dozen people with us – mostly blind and visually impaired. Each was given the opportunity to put on and use one of these wrist bands for themselves. After a short explanation on its use they began to use them for the first time. To watch each of them be able to maneuver around the room, down the hall, and through open doorways without the use of their white canes went beyond amazing – it was a truly moving moment. I look forward to seeing more information on devices such as these that continue to make the lives of our visually impaired more productive, but more importantly safer, for them.

December 6th through December 12th is Lions Eye Bank Week to promote cornea donations. This is the time for each of us to increase awareness which will help our eye banks and will lead to more tissue donations which in turn helps them give the gift of sight to more men, women and children each year. For more information visit the Lions Eye Bank Week page. Please, don’t forget them and remember to support these entities during the year.

Looking ahead to next month – January 10th through January 16th is the Lions Worldwide Week of Service to Fight Hunger and Poverty. This is an international event designed to bring dignity to nearly 80 million people around the world who go to bed hungry every night. Host a project in your community and help us reach our Centennial Goal for serving 100 million. There will be more information on this next month but in the meantime you can visit the Worldwide Week of Service page at Lions Clubs International (LCI). Make a difference and give back to your communities!

As always, remember that when we come together it’s a beginning, when we work together it’s progress, and most importantly, when we stay together we can achieve success. In the weeks to come I wish each and every one of you a safe and memorable holiday season.

Yours in Lionism,
Lion Diane Melnick,
2nd Vice-District Governor