In late January 2016, the Florida District 35-O Region 3 Lions Leadership decided on an idea that would involve all the 15 Volusia County Lions Clubs (of which Ponce Inlet is a part) and accomplish a large community service project for Volusia County that would befit their motto of “We Serve” as well as provide a community service that was innovative and not often done. Specifically, this was to conduct a short food drive that would provide food to all needy/homeless children in the County to eat during their Spring Break (a time they normally don’t have ready access to food) starting on March 18th.
The Ponce Inlet Lions Club immediately embraced this initiative and notified Town residents that all food collected would go to the deserving children that attended Longstreet Elementary School, a Title 1 school and an adopted partner of the Lions Club. Collection Blue tubs and other receptacles were put out by the Lions at the PICC, Town Hall Admin Center, Town condominiums, businesses etc. Numerous town residents got involved in the drive one way or the other and lots of food was generously donated by the residents. Cash donations made were delivered to Halifax Urban Ministries (HUM) to buy more food. Many trips were made by the Lions to ferry the collections to Longstreet Elementary where they were subsequently distributed by the staff to the appropriate children in time for their Spring Break.
Overall, the drive lasted about 4 weeks during (ending on March 12th) which time many Town residents stepped up to the challenge and generously donated a great amount of food and support for the children. The Staff of Longstreet Elementary expressed their gratitude to both the Town and the Lions for this generous outpouring of caring and support. It appears the other 14 Lions clubs also experienced similar generous giving and an estimated 2,300+ needy children were “served” in Volusia County at the end of the Drive.
The Lions meet monthly – the first Wednesday of the month at 6 PM – at the Ponce Inlet Community Center for fellowship, food, and fun. Our meetings are intended to bring members together and plan activities where we can assist those in need. We are always looking for new members to help with our mission. See our website for more information: PILions.org.