Last year, just before things slowed down for the holidays, the Santa Monica Lions were happy to participate in the Salvation Army’s fundraising efforts. While we weren’t able to ring bells at Bristol Farms, we were able to raise almost $1800 during their virtual Red Kettle Day. Thanks to the dedication of Lions and other Santa Monica and Pacific Palisades service organizations, the Salvation Army raised more than $2000 above last year.

Sadly, just after the first of the year, one of our members, Marilynn Schalit, passed away. She became a Lion in 2017 and was one of our most enthusiastic members. She was always participating in club projects, making great suggestions and promoting Lionism. She will be greatly missed.

We held our first meeting in the new year and celebrated the more than 55 years of service Kinsley Fife and Arnold Levee have given to our Club and the Santa Monica community. As committed Lions they both continue to share their years of experience, Arnold on our board of directors and Kingsley as our vice president.

We are accepting applications for the Young Leaders in Service Awards from elementary, middle and high school students who wish to be recognized for their commitment and service to others. Students need a minimum of 50 hours to earn the Silver Award and 100 or more hours for the Gold Award. The service hours need to be completed over a 12-month period. Students need to email a copy of the service logs or a letter verifying their volunteer hours from the organization(s) to santamonicalion@gmail.com. The service logs can be found at https://temp.lionsclubs.org/EN/pdfs/ylis001.pdf. Students who qualify will receive a letter and certificate from the club. The deadline is May 1, 2021. If you have any questions, please contact Pam Andrews at santamonicalion@gmail.com.

Unfortunately, the Santa Monica Lions Club will be unable to fund grant requests this year. Because of the pandemic we had to cancel our pancake breakfast, which is our only fundraiser and the source of all our grant funding. We are in the process of reevaluating our fundraising options so we can resume our grants program in the future. We know the need is greater now than ever and are encouraging our members to make personal donations to support charities in the Santa Monica/Westside community during this difficult time.

We have some great programs coming in 2021, so if you are interested in learning more about the Santa Monica Lions, please contact Yoriko Fisher at yorikofisher@gmail.com or (443) 883-1101.

Susan DeRemer