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House named Oak Harbor Lions Club president
James House was recently installed as president of the Oak Harbor Lions Club.
As president of the highly active group, he said he will stay busy trying to rally other residents to join the Lions while trying to get recognition for current members who have given time and effort to community causes.
The Oak Harbor Lions Club is one of five Lions Clubs operating on Whidbey Island. The Oak Harbor chapter is visible for selling fruit outside Rite Aid and selling Christmas trees next to the Chamber of Commerce along with performing community service projects throughout the year.
The money raised by the Lions Club goes toward vision and hearing exams, Camp Horizon and raising money for eye glasses and hearing aids. The club also supports such organizations as the Whidbey General Hospital Foundation, North Whidbey Help House, Relay for Life and the Special Olympics.
House pointed out that members contributed 2,345 hours of volunteer work last year. The club conducted 1,900 hearing and sight screenings where problems were found with 300 to 400 children. The club also helped with a blood drive where they collected 260 units, and collected food and money during the Help House’s “Christmas in July” food drive.
“We have some great people who have taken this on,” House said of the club members.
He added that membership has grown, but he is going to work to rally more people into the club. He hopes to talk with church members and people throughout the community about the benefits of the Lions Club. House said he understands how busy people are, but members are just as busy and willing to incorporate Lions activities into their schedule.
House is also looking at recruiting Navy personnel. He noted that hours volunteered for Lions Club can meet requirements of the Military Outstanding Volunteer Service Medal.
House was originally a member of the Lions in the 1980s and rejoined in the early 2000s.
He said the president of the Lions Club International hails from Hong Kong and the organization has helped in disaster areas including the earthquakes in Haiti and Japan and it has a presence in such places as Africa. Lions Club International has 1.35 million members, with 45,000 clubs representing 50 different languages.
With all of the volunteer hours members have contributed and the sacrifices they’ve made, House is hoping to get some recognition from local entities for their efforts to improve the community.
“I’d like to see that they get recognition in this community,” House said.
For more information about the Oak Harbor Lions Club, call House at 679-4514.
Club members meet at 7 p.m. Wednesdays at San Remo Grill, 421 NE Midway Blvd. in Oak Harbor.