Author Archives: Lions Clubs District 410A

How the Lion of Lions became the Roaring Lion

The Roaring Lion of District 410A

The Roaring Lion of District 410A

In late 2011 an article about the Born Free Foundation’s ‘Pride of Cape Town” appeared in the local media. Following email correspondence and a meeting with their international coordinator from the UK they accepted a proposed that Lions District 410A should become involved.

The Born Free Foundation, now a registered NPO in this country, was founded over 40 years ago in the UK. Its’ mission is simply to rescue wild animals from captivity and repatriate them to the wild.

In South Africa the rescued animals are returned to Shamwari in the Eastern Cape.

The “Pride Project” has been successfully held in other capital cities and involves commercial concerns and caring individuals each sponsoring a nearly two metre long 10kg fibreglass Lion model. Then each Lion is decorated following submission of a design proposal and motivation to Born Free, UK. Not only is it a unique marketing exercise but it also raises much needed funds as each Lion is sponsored from the outset and then auctioned.

South African sponsors paid R30000 for each Lion whilst District 410A paid half ie R15000 as a contribution to a rather different environmental project. In addition, we received 25% of the auction price of our Lion whereas other sponsors receive nothing back.

With thirty Lions placed throughout the V & A Waterfront for five weeks it was interesting to see the different designs produced by local artists. From a red Coca Cola Lion to a golden King of the Beasts complete with crown. A lot of thought went into many of the designs.

A chance encounter at a “Stop Hunger Now” meeting resulted in internationally acclaimed artist Riaan van Zyl of Kalk Bay unhesitatingly accepting the invitation to create a design and decorate the Lion of Lions. Given the internationalism of Lionism, the Born Free Foundation and the animal itself it was agreed to design our Lion with maps of the world.

On further discussion the idea of a Roaring Lion was developed and this sound activated design was approved by the organisers. Apart from finding old maps at second hand shops in his area Riaan had to use lots of white glue, brushes, acrylic paint, lacquer and thinners all sponsored by Jack’s Paint and Hardware, Edgemead.

This painstaking process involved hundreds of hours to complete apart from the local and international administration and management. Once decorated the Lion was delivered to Progressive Electronics of Goodwood for the coin slot mechanism and speakers to be fitted. As this was a pioneering project there were a few unforeseen hitches which were soon ironed out and the Roaring Lion of 410A was active, raising R650 in donations on the first day.

After the public display period the models were placed in storage, any damage repaired, our coin slot mechanism removed and all models then placed on the auction at Moyo Restaurant. As we were away at MD Convention, ten Leos under the supervision of Lion Alan Abrahamson assisted with carrying the Lions in to the stage and out again after they had been sold.

Having negotiated the opportunity to make a 55 minute documentary for Cape Town Television about our work as Lions, the Roaring Lion and our support of Born Frees’ efforts the auction was filmed by Lion Llen Labuscagne.

Further recognition needs to be given to Lions Judy Young of Cape Town Club and Lion Eleanor Barber of Merriman Lions who assisted with the distribution of Lions at the V & A.

Our artist Riaan van Zyl’s contribution has been recognised with a Louis Volks Humanitarian Award for his enthusiastic participation for Roaring Lion 1 and 2. Whilst negotiating our involvement with Born Free Foundation it was mentioned that a few extra models may be available at the end of the project and thus one has been bought for a new marketing and income generating project this fiscal year.

Our Lion of Lions was bought on auction by Deon Pienaar CEO of RandTrust and it will be displayed in the foyer of their business premises in Cape Town.

DC Clive Fox

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Merriman Lions Club Launches Youth Initiative for a Leo Club

Merriman Lions Club

From left to right:
Leo Deon van Wulven. Sebastian Fonsecu and
Nakita – Lee Croucamp of Thornton, Leo Janine van Wulven
With Claire Fonsecu aged 7
Photo by Clive Fox

Merriman Lions Club serving Goodwood, Parow , Bellville and all points North as the president Mr Clive Fox states has the motto “Service has no Boundaries.”

After a flyer hand out to learners at various local schools young people , some with their parents, attended a one hour information workshop over the long weekend. Presented by young trainers an audio visual introduced the world of LEOS –

Leadership, Excellence, Opportunity through service.

Highlighting LEO membership as an opportunity for a little adventure, fun with new friends, helping to make the community a better place young guests registered to help at 1 to 1 at the Good Hope Centre on the 18th and to meet again at

Merriman Lions Community Centre on Saturday 24th at 14h00.

Want to know more? Call Deon 083 713 6926

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An appeal from the heart at Merriman Lions women’s day breakfast

L to R: Lucky prize winners Leal Fourie, district Leo president, Hilda Quinlivan & Hazel Middleton all of Monte Vista and Lion Alan Fisher of Milnerton sit with heart transplant recipient Mrs Mavis Carelse of Tableview. Merriman Lions

L to R: Lucky prize winners Leal Fourie, district Leo president, Hilda Quinlivan & Hazel Middleton all of Monte Vista and Lion Alan Fisher of Milnerton sit with heart transplant recipient Mrs Mavis Carelse of Tableview

Mavis Carelse now 58 years old, married with a daughter and four grandchildren, was born with a “hole in the heart”. Rheumatic fever developed resulting in hospitalisation for a year and a six week long coma.

Her schooling was marred by her first stroke in 1973 and Nosebleeds throughout her high school days. She has had a number of strokes and three open heart procedures in 1980, 1984 and 1993 to replace her aortic and mitral valves and another in 2006 to effect valve repairs.

After this procedure failed she was scheduled for a transplant which was performed in 2008. Apart from the strain of waiting for a donor Mavis had meanwhile contracted tuberculosis and had to have 4 to 6 litres of blood transfused every fortnight during that period.

Her appeal for the other guests to become Organ Donors was echoed by Mr Clive Fox, Merriman Lions Club president who highlighted the fact that one registered organ donor in good health can save seven lives.

Although unable to work or drive Mavis is very active and speaks at ladies meetings, supports the Organ Donor Foundation and the Heart Foundation and does everything to encourage others to donate and save lives.

In answer to the question as to whether she felt any different as a result of a new heart she said that she previously disliked chocolate and loved birdsong. Now it’s the other way round as she now loves chocolates and hates hearing the birds sing.

Her amazing faith and positive attitude earned her the admiration of the more than sixty guests who together with Mavis and her husband Brian enjoyed a hearty breakfast.

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