Youth Portfolio reports to Convention 2024

Youth Portfolio Coordinator report to Convention 2024

PDG Lion Doreen Allen

Firstly, I would like to thank and record my appreciation of all MD Youth Officers under this Portfolio who have promoted, encouraged, and supported Lions Clubs across the MD with their youth activities this past year. They have shared ideas and good practice and lead by example. As a Team we are attempting to show that these programmes can be linked in constructive collaboration to increase participation.

As Portfolio holder, I have continued to promote the individual MD Youth programmes in conjunction with our District Officers, supporting them in whatever way I could. 

As an MD we have programmes for ages 8-21 plus International have resurrected its Cub Club programme for our smaller children aged 5 and upwards.

A reminder - Cub Clubs aged 5-11, ROAR aged 8-11, YLiS aged 8-18, Peace Poster/Essay aged 11-13, Alpha Leos aged 12-18 and Young Ambassador aged 15-19.

We also have YE International Camps 15-24 and Omega Leos 18-32. 

The individual Officers have included their reports …please take time to read them and discuss at your next Club/Zone meeting…. why not try a youth activity new to your club? Making the links with the different community groups and working with young people is so rewarding.

However, despite activities in youth groups, schools and uniformed groups increasing after the pandemic we do acknowledge that there are still some restrictions. 

Are you a teacher or school Governor, a youth group leader or member of Scouting… if the answer is YES, please look again at the Youth Portfolio and see how the programmes can fit in with your organisation's youth programme. The MD Youth Team and I are here to help and guide please talk to us. 

All the Youth Team Officers are here at Convention, come and have a chat with us about the MD Youth programmes.

Young Leaders in Service report to Convention 2024

Lion Colin Marsh

I am pleased to report that the number of YLiS participants continues to increase (gradually), together with a small increase in the number of participating clubs. Still room for plenty more!

A further addition to the project this year has been the "Platinum" award. This is by way of a certificate of appreciation acknowledging those young people who provide 250 hours or more service over a 12 month period. At the time of writing only a few have been awarded which have been well received. In order to keep costs down these certificates are printed "in house" at National HQ enabling any future amendments to be made at minimal cost. Feedback will continue to be monitored.

Whilst an easy youth project to participate in, at minimal cost, only a very small percentage of clubs within the MD participate. I would encourage all clubs to consider seeking out local youth organisations, or individuals, who might benefit from this project.

In taking part in Young Leaders in Service young people experience the rewards of giving service to their community, become involved with local Lions and Leos, make new friends and find new interests, as well as having the opportunity to enhance their C.V.  Besides the benefits to the young people themselves, Lions will experience the rewards of supporting them, gain publicity from YLiS activities thereby increasing the profile of Lions in their community and, possibly, identify potential new members.

A big thankyou must go to all YLiS District Officers, and all participating clubs. I look forward to receiving those certificate requests.

Finally, please take the opportunity to visit the Youth Display Stands, and please seek me out if you have any questions or queries regarding YLiS. 

Young Ambassador report to Convention 2024

Lion Sally Marsh

Youth Exchange report to Convention 2024

PDG Lion Doreen Allen

This has been an International programme for 60 years and provides an avenue for global friendships. It works inwards and outwards from the UK. 

The Outward Exchange this year has nine young people going from the UK to countries as far afield as China and Mexico. Young people given this opportunity are youth ambassadors for their countries and may well form friendships for life. 

After a short UK hosting only programme for five young people in 2023, we will be holding the first MD 105 Youth Camp for a number of years. The Camp is full with twenty-one young people from sixteen different countries coming to the Camp in District A. The extensive programme itinerary includes cultural activities, visits to historic places, and service activities around the Environment and Hunger causes. They will also have opportunities to share their own life experiences together. 

The other part of Inwards Youth Exchange is Family Hosting before the Camp with the young people spending nine days with a host family as part of their Youth Exchange visit. To complete our Youth Exchange Experience for the twenty-one youths we are looking for Lions across the MD who will take one or two of these young people into their family homes. Zones and Districts can work together to ensure a positive visit showing the area, culture, and historic places of their locality. 

Please, please discuss with your Club members, other Lions in your District and give them my contact details to consider this wonderful opportunity -

Peace Poster and Essay Report to Convention 2024

Lion Brigitte Green - National Headquarters

UN Day at The Palace of Westminster took place on March 12th and we had the pleasure of having the winner of the Peace Poster and family of the Peace poster winner and a representative of the Essay Competition winner present at the event. 

Our Peace poster winner was sponsored by the Lions Club of Bexhill on Sea and I was delighted that Stella was present to represent the club. Our winning artist Isabella Golez was even brave enough to say a few words of thanks at the event 

Peace Poster 2024

The Essay Competition was sponsored by Melton Keynes Stoney Stratford Lions and I thank PDG Lion Doreen Allen for her tireless work on all areas of our Youth projects 

Sadly our winner Erica Steel and family could not join us at UN Day. Erica was fully sighted until the age of 10 but was then diagnosed with a brain tumour and has undergone many hours of treatment and chemo and is in fact at currently undergoing more scans. 

We all wish Erica very best for the long road back to good health. 

I was pleased to introduce Miles Maelzer from the VICTA organisation and Miles represented Erica. VICTA Is a national charity empowering children and young adults who are blind or partially sighted and give them and their families across the UK. VICTA have been supporting Erica and her family through this difficult time. Miles kindly read the winning Essay to those attending. 

Both winners received £100 prize money.

The new theme for this year is Peace without Limits and Peace poster kits are available from the Shop at Convention 

Alpha Leo report to Convention 2024

Leo Officer - PDG Lion Doreen Allen

I thank those Clubs and Leo Advisors who encourage and support the Alpha Leo programme community and school based. We need to re-enthuse schools and local communities to encourage young people and give them the opportunity to serve.

The Alpha Leo Clubs number eight on the L I website but only 5 are in active mode with a combined membership of 89. The newly formed Stafford Leos provided their District with a Young Ambassador winner this year. 

There has also been a number of inquiries from Clubs across the UK asking about Leos and how to start a club and I am hopeful of one this fiscal year and a possible second in September

Fellow Lions, young people are enthusiastic about hunger projects, environmental issues and supporting their local communities. Are you a teacher or school governor? A Scout or Guide Leader? A parent or grandparent of young people 12-18 years? Do you know are you in contact with a youth volunteer organisation, a uniformed youth group or Young Leaders in Service applicants? 

Why not give them the opportunity to serve alongside your Club talk to your local schools – they are all keen to promote volunteering and citizenship. More hands mean more service…please just ASK them. 

I am here at Convention, visit the Youth tables and come and have a chat about how we can together increase our Leo numbers.  

ROAR report to Convention 2024

MDO Lion David Skinner

The ROAR programme for 2023 has been successfully completed with 66 Lions Clubs supporting 134 schools. The programme reached over 25,000 children although Covid once again restricted the expansion of the programme. For the calendar year 2024 we hope to reach a target of 200 schools.

In the ROAR programme each school appointed teams of 3-4 pupils and these teams developed their innovative idea to improve the world. Each school was supported by its Lions Club which, in most cases, helped with the launch and the judging of the ideas to find the school's winning team and presented awards of medals and certificates. The winning team from each school then made a video from which each District Judging Team decided its District Winner. 

The eight District Winners then presented their videos at the public National Awards Day-NAD- zoom event. NAD was very successfully hosted by our partners 8billionideas- 8bi- in December and was  viewed by around 1000 people.

In 2024 The ROAR Team are working hard to engage more schools. With 8bi they have produced two promotional videos. The marketing Group have organized six ROAR Information Evenings.  As a pilot scheme we are also inviting selected schools through 8bi to engage with ROAR in Districts A, CE and SE.

The ROAR Team is a talented and dedicated group of Lions and I would like to thank them for their support and enthusiasm this year.  In 2024 the ROAR Team will be looking to assist interested Clubs engage in ROAR- a programme which brings education and FUN to children, schools and Clubs and makes you proud to be a Lion.

Young Ambassador

Lion Sally Marsh

2023/2024 marks 50 years since Barbara Loughran, sponsored by Ballyfinaghy Lions Club 105I, won the first award recognising Young Volunteers in our communities. Then known as The Youth Award, becoming Young Ambassador of the 21st Century in 2000, it has gone from strength to strength, even a global pandemic didn't stop it. 

The 50th Anniversary final took place at the Village Hotel Dudley over the weekend of February 16th – 18th, 2024. Another year of inspiring young people from across our MD. On Sunday morning many Lions, friends and supporters attended to listen to another group of amazing Young Ambassadors. The Friday evening welcome and Saturday Gala saw over 150 Lions and guests sit down to enjoy each other's company and have an opportunity to socialise with the candidates. 

Young Ambassador Pin BadgeA limited number of YA 50-year pins have been produced, unfortunately there was a delay in delivery, so they were not at the YA MD final. Orders were taken over the weekend and the remaining pins will be on sale at MD Convention. The cost of a pin is £5. Each Young Ambassador has been sent one.

The MD105 Young Ambassador for 2024 is Liliana Noor (105A) sponsored by Harrow and Pinner Lions Club. 

Young Ambassador LilianaLiliana will be attending Europa Forum, October 24th–26th, in Bordeaux to represent the amazing young people of the British Isles at the Bert Mason Lions European Young Ambassador Award.

Young Ambassador Harley-JaiHarley-Jai Phillips (105CN) sponsored by Bolton Lions Club, was presented with the Shipshape Award.

Over the past 2˝ years I have enjoyed volunteering with 'Believe Achieve,' undertaking many different activities involving the community with the most recent  being Believe Achieve's 2 year Anniversary party which I organised and hosted with the Youth Advisory Group which I lead on. We opened the centre to the public and numerous organisations,

to give them the opportunity to come and network with the Team and see activities on offer. 

I have been involved in numerous, Community Action events and community support groups for young people and adults seeking support via our services. Last year, I had a substantial role in distributing 13,034 food parcels to support families across the North West, equating to around 36 food parcels each night.

Recently, I organized and coordinated a Fundraising Night which raised £455. We had many big supporters, such as JD Sports, PUMA, Nandos and Greater Manchester Police.

Shipshape Award

In July 2023 three Shipshape Award winners joined a voyage with the Jubilee Sailing Trust. Katie Bladon (2021) and Cameron Cox (2022) were unable to join a voyage during their year because of Covid and age, so they and Iman set sail together from Liverpool. They had an experience of a lifetime, when Iman spoke in Dudley this year he said, 

"There wasn't any part of the crewing experience I disliked it was an amazing experience. The experience taught me how to manage time and how to work better in a team. I was able to help the other crew members who were less confident feel more comfortable on the voyage. The crew were very friendly and helped answer any questions I had. The chef/cook even made me a cake for Eid (Muslim celebration) and the food was different but nice.

I would recommend the voyage to others because it was a fun experience and taught me a lot and something different."

Tallships logoAlthough the appeal for donations by the Jubilee Sailing Trust in 2022 raised almost 1million pounds thus enabling them to continue with the amazing opportunity they offer to young people, unfortunately it was not sufficient for them to continue long term and in December 2023 it was announced that they would cease trading. With only 2 months until the 2024 final the search was on for a new provider. 

Thanks to the hard work of Lion Mike Field, the award for 2024 and future years will be provided by the Tall Ships Youth Trust. 

The award is presented to a Young Ambassador who demonstrates a particularly strong personal commitment and enthusiasm for their community work. The Lions Clubs Young Ambassador Shipshape Award provides a life changing adventure at sea for one of the

Yacht sailing

Young Ambassador finalists. Its purpose is for the recipient to develop their leadership skills by joining a crew of young people aboard one of the Tall Ships Youth Trust's ships. 

The Young Ambassadors 2024, along with all those who were part of District finals show how amazing many young people are. They, and many more like them across the British Isles, do not stand back and hope others will do something where help is needed.  When they see a need they step up and find ways of organising a project and supporting those who need help. Please look out for these young people in your towns and villages and recognise what volunteering they do; they are the Lions of the future. Please contact your District Officer or me if your club would like help to get involved.

This year MD 105 New Voices attended the weekend for the second year. They held a workshop on Saturday and joined with the Young Ambassador events on both evenings and the Sunday morning Presentation Ceremony. We look forward to having them with us again in 2025. 

My thanks go to the many Lions who have ensured that these remarkable and inspirational young people are recognised. Thank you to clubs throughout the Multiple District who have again identified, supported, and kept in touch with these our Lions of the future. Thank you to all the Lions who supported the YA Awards by attending the 2024 finals at The Village Hotel, Dudley. Also, to the District Officers for their help and support with putting on the 2024 YA weekend. 

The MD Young Ambassador Final 2025 will be held over the weekend of February 21st-23rd at The Village Hotel, Dudley.

Please note that is different to the venue printed on the programme.

The Young Ambassador Team look forward to seeing everyone at The Village Hotel, Dudley, where we will once again be meeting 8 inspirational Young Ambassadors from MD105.