International Lions Club Roaring Through the Shoals

Tiffani Adams, Volunteer Writer

The Lions Club is an international non-profit organization aiming to aid in community relief through means of charitable work and humanitarian services. A meeting held in the Florence Public Library on Thursday, April 7th highlighted their goal of establishing a branch in the Shoals area. While there is already an established Lions Club office located in downtown Florence, this new branch is unique as they are partnering with UNA to aid students in need and to establish a young- adult based Lion community. 

There are currently three districts in Alabama, the Shoals area (and other northern locations) being labeled 34-A with a total of 41 clubs established. The Club communicates with each district, gathering data on population and the environment, to predict what individuals in the community will need. Services in these districts include vision (a main priority), special education, rehabilitation, funding for basic needs, health issues, and environmental issues. The Lions Club has been established for over a century with famous faces such as Helen Keller, President Jimmy Carter, and Amelia Earhart endorsing the club, and offering a framework of services that are currently built upon. 

Mechelle Mosley is the governor of district 34-A whose duties include compiling information from international organizations and forwarding it to local clubs. She observes areas of need in her district, generates ideas for funding, and coordinates with other districts in emergency situations such as weather events that frequent Alabama. 

“I never seen a group of people more willingly to serve,” Mosley said. “It amazes me how anyone in the community can call up any lions club. There is always a lion to step up to the plate.”

She has trained for her position for two years as offices in the club require members to be willing to serve their community, display excellent leadership qualities and coordinate in high pressure situations while offering original ideas to form lasting connections.

“We can’t start a club unless that club has identified a way to aid the community. Any funds raised in a community has to go back to the community. It’s not used for T-shirts or members’ dues,” Mosley said. 

Mosley is excited to observe how UNA and The Lions Club collaborate. There is a high promise of both student, faculty, and community members volunteering to relieve the issues plaguing the Shoals areas with unique ideas. A new task being discussed is aiding juveniles and children in alternative living situations by improving communication skills via social emotional education and plans of action were formed at the Thursday meeting. The collaboration is sure to aid students in need as well through financing or basic needs and health concerns, while establishing leadership skills and a sense of pride in UNA’s own lion community.