The past few weeks have been very exciting for LCIF! We achieved several milestones through our partnerships in vision and health that will help millions of people.
Just last week, I had the opportunity to meet with former United States President and Lion Jimmy Carter at The Carter Center’s headquarters. And, I am happy to announce the expansion of the Lions-Carter Center SightFirst Initiative to prevent blindness and save sight. LCIF expressed its intent to provide more than US$8 million over a three-year period to continue focusing on blinding trachoma and onchocerciasis where the needs are greatest.
Lions are also making great strides against another disease – measles – thanks to you. We challenged Lions to raise US$1 million as part of our 30-day challenge in April for measles, and you surpassed it! Donations totaled US$870,000 and will be matched with $500,000 from Abhey and Past District Governor Aruna Oswal. I was so pleased to inform the Oswal family that LCIF has surpassed the goal and that with their support, US$1.3 million will be given to secure life-saving vaccinations. Now, many more parents will not have to worry about losing a child to measles, like so many others have.
These contributions will be able to help even more people through our partnership with the GAVI Alliance. When we pledged to raise US$30 million for measles through the GAVI Alliance by 2017, GAVI agreed double LCIF’s donations through its matching fund. That means that the US$1.3 million raised in April through LCIF for measles will be doubled to total more than US$2.6 million! What a great accomplishment in such a short period of time.
It is through Lions like you and partners like The Carter Center and the GAVI Alliance that our service efforts are enhanced around the world. When we work together, we can help more people than ever before.
Wayne A. Madden
Chairperson, Lions Clubs International Foundation