The Greater Pine Island Lions are collecting numerous items for recycling to residents and other charitable organizations for distribution.
ALL OCCASION GREETING CARDS (new or used.) Including special "relative" (mom, dad, grandson, etc.) and holiday cards (Christmas, Easter, Mother's Day, graduation, etc.)
These are provided to the Lighthouse of SW Florida, 35 W. Mariana Avenue, North Fort Myers (formerly Visually Impaired Persons)
They cut the pictures off and glue them to their own cards with their name, address, etc., on the back. They also add pictures to the inside with words appropriate from other cards.
They add new envelopes and sell for a small amount in their facility. This money helps the volunteers who are there for rehab. Bundles of these cards go out to servicemen and women at various locations stateside and worldwide so they will have free cards to mail "home."
Note: They also can use picture frames for the canvas paintings by some of their clients. If you have these and cannot take them to the Lighthouse, call the Lions and they can arrange to pick them up and deliver to them.
ALSO POSTAGE STAMPS (new or used.) These are used as rehab in veteran hospitals. The patients cut the stamps into "small tiles" and use them to construct art work/pictures which they sell in the hospitals for spending money, or use as gifts for their friends and relatives.
REGULAR & SUNGLASSES (readers are also accepted). These are shipped to the Lions' facility in northern Florida where they are cleaned, repaired and sorted. Many are redistributed right here in Florida or sent to other states, countries to be distributed by Lions or missionaries.
HEARING AIDS. If these are fairly new, they might be redistributed right here, otherwise they go to another group in Lions who refurbish them and then they are reissued to those in need, who cannot afford to buy them.
CELL PHONES: These too are refurbished and reissued to those in need: domestic violence victims, older people who cannot afford the cell phones and need them to carry with them in case they fall.
The GPI Lions Club provides free eye exams and glasses to residents of Greater Pine Island who cannot afford them. If the eye exam finds other problems, the Lions work with the opthalmologist to get the price lowered so whatever is needed to correct the problems is affordable. Other surgeries such as cataracts are also provided working with the doctor and with the help of the Lions Eye Foundation (to which Lions' Clubs donate money annually).
Hearing aids are also provided. These are issued through the Starkey Foundation and the GPI Lions work with Leonardi on North U.S. 41. Leonardi graciously donates its time and provide the ear molds, etc., needed before ordering the proper hearing aid from Starkey, once the application is approved.
The Lions also donate to numerous organizations on the Island: FISH, Dr. Sanchez and Lens Crafters, the Food Pantry, Museum of the Island, Pine Island Elementary, Scout and Cub Scout Troops 20 of GPI, a Little League T-Baseball Team.
Each Lions Club is responsible for earning its own money in order to provide services for residents who cannot afford them. The GPI Lions' annual fund-raiser is "Greater Pine Island 5th Annual Raffle/Auction," to be held a the St. James Civic Center Feb. 15, from 6-10 p.m. A $50 ticket includes a buffet of peel and eat fresh Florida shrimp, Hawaiian meatballs, chicken wings (many dressings), many side dishes, desserts and coffee and water. Bring your own bottle or cooler - they are welcomed. That ticket also entitles the holder to a chance to win $1,000, $500 and two $100 drawing prizes. A live auction will be held throughout the evening.
Tables can be reserved upon request. Tickets will be available in November. Only 100 will be offered. Call Mary at 239-283-9761 for information!
The Lions have drop boxes at Beacon of H.O.P.E., Family Hair Salon, Community Church, Stonegate Bank, Fishers of Men Lutheran Church, P.I. Library and Pine Island Cove Club House, and in Matlacha at the Post Office and Spa 33.