Why Leos should go to Lions Forums – Europa Forum 2017

 

A few weeks ago we talked about why Leos should attend the Leo Europa Forum. However, it might not be as obvious why Leos should attend a Lions Europa Forum. Well, let me tell you my point of view on this.

First of all, it is all about friendship. Seeing fellow Leo friends, yes! But also meeting incredible Lions from all over Europe and the world and making new connections. It is surprising sometimes how much we can share with someone.

Because of this, Lions Europa Forums are also the best occasion we have to make Lions hear our voice. We cannot always sit in a corner and complain that they don’t want to listen to us. Sometimes, we need to make the first step and position ourselves where they can reach us! During the Forum, we did exactly that, not only by participating in the organization of some Leo/Lions Seminars, but also by actively taking part in all the events proposed (such as the get together, the gala dinner and the opening and closing ceremony) as well as the other seminars available!

The seminars are for sure another great opportunity at the Europa Forum. They provide new knowledge (both lionistic and general) as well as new ideas for service, like in the case of the “Water means Life” seminar, on the topics of water scarcity and WaSH (Water, Sanitation and Hygiene) by Peter Brabeck-Letmathe, Chairman Emeritus, Nestlé S.A., and Dr. Christian Zurbrügg, Sandec, Member of directorate of EAWAG. Leos got a chance to tell their view on the topic and also talk about our amazing European Activity, Leo4Green!

But again, it is probably the people that make the best of this event. Not just the Lions, many of which approached us and with which we have been able to share and receive advices and experiences, but also with other less known (at least for most of us Leos) participants of the Forum. As an example, as Leos, we had the chance to spend some time talking with the finalists of the Young Ambassador Contest and it was incredible and humbling.

They are often incredibly young and already so dedicated to their community and to the well-being of others, yet they do not seem to realize how incredibly difficult it is what they are doing for their community, how challenging it is to serve.

Let me tell you, if there is someone that can motivate you to do better, it is a Young Ambassador contestant. If there is one in your country, get in touch with them! We have a lot to learn from them!

So, why participate to a Lions Europa Forum?

I told you my view on this, but honestly – like with LEF – everyone finds their own reasons! So, let me invite you, next year, to consider attending the Lions Europa Forum 2018 in Skopje, from October 25th to October 27th! I’m sure it will be something you won’t regret!

 

Eleonora Fresia

ILO Council Board Member

ILO MD 108 ITALY 2016/2017 & 2017/2018

LEPF 2018

Dear LEO Friends,

We would like to invite you to LEPF 2018 in Hungary, which will take place between 26-28th January 2018 in Visegrád, Hungary.

In the Middle Ages, Visegrád was the capital of Hungarian kings. This is the reason why the concept and some of the programs are inspired by the Renaissance area

During our LEPF we will have various programs for you.

On Friday after you arrived and looked in the Hotel, we will play some funny games to warm up. We’ll close the first evening with a great party: a VEGAS themed party! You know, what happens in Vegas stays in Vegas ;)

On Saturday we’ll bring you for a whole day trip to our capital city Budapest.

In the morning you’ll have two programs to choose from:

  • The Invisible Exhibition is a unique interactive journey to an invisible world, where in total darkness you find your way only by touch, sounds and scent. The Exhibition brings the world of the blind and the seeing closer to each other and teaches through positive experiences how we can help them, even understand them.
  • At the Escape Room you will work in teams and will face real challenges. The point is to get out of rooms – which have certain themes – by solving different puzzles, codes and signs. You will have 1 h to find the way out, else you lose! Better be fast J

We will take you to a special place for lunch. Sir Lancelot restaurant is a middle age themed restaurant, where you don’t need to use your knife and fork, just enjoy the meal and use your hand.

During the afternoon you can choose from three programs:

  • Visiting Zwack Museum. During the tour in the museum you will get to know a lot about our famous herb liquor, the Unicum! You will see the more than 100 years old distilling systems and aromatic herbs, which are part of the secret of our Unicum.
  • Shopping / Sightseeing. Budapest is a great town for shopping, we have many-many shopping centers! In case you want to discover the city, you can do sightseeing.
  • Visiting Gellért Spa. Budapest is famous for its thermal baths, which are very popular especially during cold winter afternoons. This is a plus program, so in case you would like to go there please calculate with 20 Eur extra.

After we arrived back to the Hotel, you can start your preparations for Saturday night’s party: the MAGIC KINGDOM party! If you ever wanted to be a princess, a dragon, Shrek or Khal Drogo, this is your opportunity!

On Sunday we say goodbye to eachother in the hope that we’ll meet soon, latest at LEF 2018 (25th August-1st September).

Let’s spend a wonderful weekend together and share this #HUNforgettable experience!

To find more information please check our:

The LEF 2018 Orgateam

The Adventure of Leo The Leo!

There once was a lonely fluffy toy lion who was often mistaken for a bear. He lived a sad life on a shelf in a shop in a city called Tallinn. There was not much happening in the life of the lion. Some kids came and gave him a hug from time to time just to place him back on the shelf.

This was until one glorious day when 4 lovely girls from Leo Club Tallinn noticed him. It was love at first sight and there was no way that they could have left that cute lion behind. So it was decided – he will become the newest member of their Leo club. And the lion was called Leo The Leo!

This was just the start for the magical adventures of Leo the Leo. He has already joined the Leo girls in a countryside weekend to wrap-up their stories of the summer and LEF 2017, participated in a club meeting to plan the new year as well as met his first international Leos.

Leo The Leo has a bright future ahead where he will join the Leos also at different service projects, their meetings and hopefully also will be taken along to the glorious adventures in foreign lands. If you want to follow the Adventure of Leo the Leo, find him on Instagram as @adventuresofleotheleo

LIONS CAMP E 2017

 

One of the most special things about the Danish LEO’s is that they since 2011 have hosted their own Lions Camp. As far as I know, most LEO’s “just” help with the planning and take part in a Lions Youth Exchange Camp, but we start our planning 10 months before the camp and do it all ourselves – from finding a location, making the program, taking care of logistics and transportation for the Youth Exchange Students (YES), handling the budget etc. We do get financial support from the Danish Lions though, but recently one of the Danish LEO Clubs actually had to “save” some money for the camp in case something went wrong.

Frøslev Boarding School near the German border was the location for Lions Denmark Camp E this summer. 20 young people of 14 different nationalities participated. The purpose of the camp was to give the YES’s the opportunity to make good relations and new friends across borders. Furthermore, we wanted to give the participants memories for life! 

The two weeks of the camp was spent on different day trips like: Visiting Ribe Viking Center to see how the Vikings lived, having a Sports Day, a trip to Sønderborg and Dybbøl Banke and looking for seals near Mandø. We also had a tradition day where the YES’s tried to celebrate both Fastelavn and a Danish Christmas Eve – and they even met Santa Claus!

To be a participant of a Youth Exchange Camp is an amazing experience but being a staff member on the camp is even more incredible. As part of the staff, you are so tired after the camp from all the hard work you have done the last two weeks. On the other hand, you are filled with so many good memories and have learnt so much about yourself, the other LEO’s, the YES’s and their countries and cultures. 

The Danish LEO organisation has really improved since we hosted our first camp in 2011. Instead of just spending a weekend together at a National Convention, we spent 10 months planning each camp and then spent two entire weeks together. The outcome of this is that the relationship between the Danish LEO’s has really been boosted. This is very useful when we do joint national projects and on our national LEO board and it also help us keeping our LEO spirit high! It has also really improved our relationship with the Danish Lions. We struggled to get our own camp in the first place and we have overcome a lot of obstacles over the years. The important part is that we can and will do this together as LEO’s. Sadly, our MD can’t afford to host our camp next summer but we as LEO’s have been offered to organise one of the three Danish district camps in 2018. That is such a big honour and it exemplifies how our relationship with the Danish Lions has grown over the last years.

 

– Sofie Schøler Bargisen, ILO of MD106, Denmark

The participants of the Lions Camp E 2017

 

Chien Guide – Blind Dog – Cane Guida – Blindenhunde

On the 15th of October was the world white cane day, so we’d like to highlight an activity launched in France by Leo Club Paris Rive Droite, in partnership with the Lions Clubs of France.

The service dog activity is based on a sticker, that sends a message of support for blind people.

Beeing blind is a huge burden in our society where we are so dependent on our eyesight. Blind people have a couple of options to help themself get through their daily life. One of those options are the well known guide dogs, which help their master find their way around the town. But having a dog with you 24/7 causes other problems, we as the non blind people, might not even think about.

One problem for example is entering shops with a guide dog: usually dogs are forbidden in shops. Even though guide dogs are allowed everywhere since 1987, most owners are not sure if they are really welcome in that particular shop they are about to enter. Especially supermarkets and other food stores don’t like our four legged friends between all their groceries. This can be a huge factor of insecurity for guide dog owners.

On the other side shop owners usually have no problem with well behaved guide dogs showing their masters the way around their store.
To allow shop owners to show their sympathy for guide dog owners, the French Leos of Leo Club Paris Rive Droite created this sticker that can be stuck at the shop door or window.
This will allow the family and friends of the blind dog owners, to identify guide dog friendly stores and recommend these shops to them.

The stickers are at the moment available in four languages: French, English, Italian and German.
More Infos at: http://lionsclubhelenkeller.fr/chien-guide-et-son-maitre/
If you want to take part in this activity then fill out the form:
http://lionsclubhelenkeller.fr/wp-content/uploads/2016/03/Chien_guide_commande.pdf
and write an E-Mail to chienguidebienvenueici@gmail.com

If the sticker ist not available in your language yet, then contact them as well and be sure to bring this activity to your country!

Xavier Maechler – ILO MD 103 France
Alexander Kölpien – ILO MD 111 Germany

Gewoon LEF

“What a week” – that is the first thing that comes to my mind while trying to settle in back home after those seven sensationally orange days.

Now in this place I could tell you about every single program point in detail, but let’s be honest: you are reading this, so either you have been there, or you have already seen hundreds of pictures from numberous things that happened during that week. If neither of that applies to you, I just recommend to visit the LEF2017 Facebook page and have a look.

So what am I talking about in this article then? I am talking about what makes the LEF special, about those feelings the pictures can’t absorb, the reason why you shouldn’t go on a five day trip to an all inclusive resort somewhere in the mediteranian. But why you should visit a European country and celebrate LEO, celebrate social contacts, celebrate beeing open minded torwards any culture and yes, just to celebrate for the sake of it.

Because what makes any LEF, but this one in particular, special is not whether you have been in the most exciting climbing garden you’ve ever been in – that is just the icing on the cake. What makes a LEF special is the people.

So the main job for a LEF orga team is to provide the best possible support frame to make this happen.

The hotel was sold out to the LEOs exclusively (which is neat), so more than 240 people, half of them newcomer needed to be formed into one group. And damn did the orga team do a good job.

Right on Sunday, the first day, in the opening ceremony, when Vince declared the LEF opened, confetti came from the ceeling, everyone received a cold Heineken to the tunes of “Don’t Stop Believin'” and you could feel how the excitement from the old LEFers spilled over to the newcomers. Suddenly everyone was fulfilled with the LEF magic.

The fun presentation of countries on Sunday evening then helped to set aside the last reservations torwards each other and people from various countries met each other to talk and share what they consider as their national foods and drinks.

That is why I come to LEF, to meet people you wouldn’t meet if you weren’t there. To learn something about other cultures and open your mind in times when we see the opposite happen.

And what further can I say? The rest is legendary! A beautiful social activity with a visit from IVP Gudrun Yngvadottir where we took more than 200 children from difficult circumstances to the zoo will always be remembered as an outstanding highlight from LEF 2017. Two very different motto parties were crazy fun, as my LEO friends from the German carnival strongholds always tell me “put 200 people in costume in a room and it will be fun!”, even though I’d like to add: “200 LEOs is even better”.

Some Dutch events like the farmers golf or cheese making rounded the program off together with awesome day trips to Amsterdam and Rotterdam and the gala on Thursday was a beautiful evening that I am sorry for everyone who missed it.

In the end I’d just like to thank the amazing orga team once again for all their hard work and hope to see everyone again next year at a #hunforgettable LEF in Hungary!

Alexander Kölpien – ILO MD111 Germany