The Norris Lions Club is a part of the largest community service volunteer organization in the world. The International program emphasizes several different ways in which members contribute, both internationally and especially locally. Providing assistance to people suffering from poor eyesight and poor hearing is a major theme, but equal weight is given to helping address special local needs. The education programs of the Norris Lions Club are especially important.
Our youngest students, at Norris Elementary School, can be assisted by being mentored by a dedicated few who acknowledge the learning hardships of children. Members of the Norris Lions Club are among the mentors presently working with school staff to assist those students in most need. In many instances, the results are remarkable, sufficiently so that the mentor program has become a matter of pride for the Club and one which is assured of continuing success.
When they enter Norris Middle School, two programs of the Lions Club offer opportunities for students in both the arts and the sciences. Those with artistic talent are encouraged to participate in the Peace Poster competition. This is an activity of Lions International in which our own Middle School students can participate, with considerable recent success. In the contemporary international atmosphere of conflict and the national and local excited discussions about basic values of our society, students are encouraged to illustrate, in poster form, a message promoting discourse and friendship. Entries are judged by school staff and Lions members, with modest prizes awarded to winners. The winning posters advance to a regional Lions competition, in which Norris Middle School has done well. The opportunity follows for the student submissions to continue along the path to international consideration. Judging is based on both the artistic merit and the message being conveyed.
In parallel with the Peace Poster activity, the Lions Club, in concert with the Norris Conservation and Recycling Commission, sponsors an annual Science Challenge competition. Students are challenged to present a new and workable idea about how our community and its surroundings might become more environmentally friendly. Entries are judged on the grounds of the practicality and innovation of the concept, and on the excellence of the presentation. Winners receive a monetary prize.
The Peace Poster and Science Challenge mainstream programs of the Norris Lions Club, intended to stretch the minds of our talented students. The products of both are worthy of careful and detailed attention. Elsewhere in this special Bulletin there are more detailed descriptions of the programs and a list of recent winners.
The Anderson County High School has been the center of NLC attention for our older students. The centerpiece of Norris Lions Club contributions has been the awarding of a scholarship, each year, to the most qualified graduating student to assist in future college courses. Each scholarship can be used for up to four years of coursework. The amount of each scholarship is presently set at $2400, over the four-year span.
The Boys and Girls State programs led by the American Legion have also profited from Lions Club attention. In past years, two or three participants in these programs have been supported by the Lions Club. In the current year, the Boys State program was adequately supported by the Legion; the Lions Club role therefore focused on the Girls State activity. Lions Club members look forward each year to a presentation by the recipients of these awards, describing their experiences.
However, the main involvement of the Norris Lions Club with the Anderson County High School is certainly the support of the ACHS Leos Club. This is essentially a Lions Club for students, carrying the goals of the Lions Clubs in general into the high school environment. The Leos at ACHS are exceedingly active, and are well known for the assistance they render to the local disadvantaged population.
If you visit the Lions Club Norris Day celebration downtown, watch for the Leos at the duck race, in the cafeteria, and elsewhere throughout the day. Our ACHS Leos are a reliable contributor to and promoter of our NLC activities.
The awards for 2016 are as listed here, and as discussed elsewhere in this document.
Scholarship: Keisha Heatherly Girls State: Paley Perry and Brittany Foust
Rachael Phillips - 1st Place
Trinity Weise - 2nd Place
Garrison Terry - 3rd Place
Abigale Welden - Honorable Mention
Holly Carmany - Honorable Mention
Jordan Fall - Honorable Mention
Kayla Lemanski - Honorable Mention
Katie Giles – 1st Place
Gennavieve Moneymaker, Abby Leinart, Shelby Key and Annie-Jo McNeeley – 2nd place (group submission)
Matthew Murphy and Connor Livingston – 3rd place (group submission)