San Pedro Leo’s Club chartered with 20 members

Thursday, May 31st, 2012

A special ceremony was held at the San Pedro Lions Den for the charter of a San Pedro Leo Club and the installation of its Charter members. The event took place on Saturday May 26th and had in attendance members of the sponsoring San Pedro Lions Club as well as special guests from the Belize City Lions Club. The official charting ceremony and installation of Charter members was conducted by the Belize Lions Zone 59 Chairman Dr. Glenn Espadas.

The Leo’s program was officially adopted and incorporated into the International Lions Club Organization in October of 1967, ten years after being started by baseball coach Jim Graver of Abington High School in Pennsylvania, USA. The Leo’s acronym stands for Leadership, Experience and Opportunity. The main goals of Leos worldwide is to provide youth worldwide with an opportunity for development and contribute, both individually and collectively, as responsible members of the local, national and international community. It is expected that through service projects and campaigns it will help Leos to develop leadership skills while they serve the San Pedro community. The running of the affairs of San Pedro Leo’s Club is independent of that of the SP Lion’s Club but it is expected that the Leos work closely as a youth extension of the club. Similar to SP Lion’s Club, the Leo have their own President and board of Directors and more importantly have their own governing laws set by Lion’s International. Leo members can be divided into two club types 12 to 18 (Alpha) and the 18 to 30 (Omega). Leo members are not considered “baby Lions.”  By learning and loving the art of service, it is always the hope of Lions International to eventually have Leo join the Lion’s Club when they become of right age.

Speaking at the event Dr. Espadas explained the importance of the ceremony. He then conducted the Chartering and Installation of the membership as well as the Installation of the first board of the Leo’s Club. During the ceremony he presented the Leo’s Club with a Certificate of Organization which should be displayed permanently at their meeting place. “We must support and guide them and we must love them. The relationship of both clubs is that of a friendship. We want the best for them and we will respectfully work along with them in service on an equal basis,” said Dr. Espadas.  He went on to say that “Leo, you bring a fresh energy to our every endeavor. You all refresh our service mission and we hope that you will grow into becoming Lions.

The President of the SP Leo’s Club Ismael Kay said that SP Lion’s Club must be commended for galvanizing vibrant young teenagers to service and forming the Leo’s Club. “We have taken the initiative to involve ourselves into this dynamic club. I invite my fellow Leos to take on the challenge with me and make this club a vibrant and fruitful one,” said President Kay.

Also speaking at the event was the President of the SP Lions Club Marina Kay and immediate past President Melanie Paz. They both spoke of the tremendous work done to strengthen the SP Lion’s Club and setting long term goals such as that of the chartering of a Leo Club, a goal set almost three years ago.

Along with Kay, the Leo’s Board of Directors comprises of vice President Ivy Allamilla, Secretary Maite Livingston, Treasurer Natalie Olivarez and Club Directors are Shantel Pascacio and Solanie Graniel. A total of 20 members were chartered and they all received a Leo’s jacket, installation pins and Leo kits. Following installation of the Leo’s Club the Leo’s President was presented with the official Chartered Certificate. The President of the Lion’s Club Marina Kay also took the occasion to name three Lion members as Honorary Lions for their years of service in San Pedro. Lions Beto and Nita Marin as well as Gonzalo “Reds” Lara were presented with Honorary Members of SP Lions Club certificates.

The SP Leo’s Club and its members join over 150,000 members in over 139 countries. The San Pedro Sun congratulates the young Leos and wishes them the best in many years of service.

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