Community service, be it through volunteer opportunities or project funding, is the cornerstone of being a Lion.

On March 17, the Santa Monica Lions participated in the 4th Annual Lions Eyes Across of California with free vision and hearing screenings and the distribution of free eyeglasses. Your vision is one of the most valuable abilities you have and it is essential for day-to-day living. Every year we are proud to help people see.

Coming up next month are two additional activities that we enjoy every year. First, we are planting trees with other SM service clubs on Arbor Day, April 26, at Virginia Avenue Park. Each year the Lions plant trees as part of our commitment to the environment, from trees that line 11th Street, to trees providing shade at Clover and Palisades Parks, we are committed to keeping Santa Monica green.

Second, we are participating in the SM Arts & Literacy Festival on Saturday, April 28, at Virginia Avenue Park. This family event allows children to explore their creativity and use their imaginations as they discover the wonder of books and an appreciation for reading. We will also be providing free books to children that come and visit the Lion’s booth. If you would like to volunteer with us, please contact Anna at santamonicalion@gmail.com.

As for program funding, the deadline to submit grant applications from nonprofit organizations is May 1. Grants are available to 501 (c)(3) organizations that serve the Santa Monica and Westside communities. Applications and the complete set of guidelines are available online at http://bit.ly/lionsgrants. If you have any questions, contact Susan at santamonicalion@gmail.com or (310) 442-9513.

If you have a passion for serving the Santa Monica and Westside communities, please consider becoming a Lion. To learn more about the Santa Monica Lions or attend a lunch meeting to network with other members on the 1st or 3rd Thursday of each month, please contact Linda at levelheadedlinda@yahoo.com or (310) 472-0530. Our meetings are held at the Elk Lodge on Pico, between 10th and 11th Streets at 12:15 p.m.

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