Welcome to the latest from Shepshed Lions Club Annual Charity Carnival.
4th July 2017
We are often asked by members of the public, “What do you do with the money that you raise?”. This is a fair question and we try to publicise the good causes we support. We have regular features in the Shepshed Eye with photographs and short articles to say how we support our community. Donations to these groups or individuals vary according to their needs. We sometimes make cash grants and other times we find out what they need and purchase the equipment for them.
One of the objectives of Lions Clubs International is to support youth projects and young people. To that end here are some heart-warming stories that show how Shepshed Lions Club made a huge impact on the lives of 3 young people in our community.
Alfie Smith and his new bed!
Alfie is a little boy who lives in Shepshed with his parents, Fay and Josh and now his new- born sister Isla. Alfie was born with cerebral palsy, global developmental delay and a congenital heart defect. This resulting in Alfie suffering from muscle spasms during the night as a result of the cerebral palsy and also having no danger awareness due to the developmental delay resulting in him posing a risk to himself. This resulted in Alfie falling out of bed regularly with a danger of Alfie injuring himself. It was obvious that it was necessary to buy a bed that would keep Alfie safe at night.
Fay and Josh researched specialist beds to find a bed that would keep Alfie safe and found the perfect bed to achieve that aim. There was one major obstacle for Fay and Josh, the bed was very expensive and beyond their means. This did not deter them as they were determined to do the best for Alfie, so they set about fundraising to buy the bed. They started their fundraising project called ‘Action for Alfie “and publicised what they were doing. When Shepshed Lions Club heard about this they visited Alfie and his parents who explained what they were trying to achieve. The Lions told them to buy the bed for Alfie and they would pay for it.
On a recent follow-up visit by Shepshed Lions Club Fay and Josh said that without the bed, Alfie’s, and their lives, would be much more difficult. The changes that the provision of the bed had made to them were huge. They could put Alfie to bed at night knowing he would be safe and not fall out of the bed, or climb out of it. This mad sure that he did not add to his already serious health issues. Alfie’s mother, Fay, said “ We could not believe the quick response of Shepshed Lions Club to our appeal. It was a fantastic boost for us and made all of ours lives better. It also enabled us to use the additional funds we raised to provide additional physiotherapy for Alfie. We cannot thank the Lions enough”.
Shepshed Lions Club Help Zakk Marks.
Zakk Marks is an 11 year old boy who lives with his mum, Emma ,and Dad ,Lee in Shepshed. Since birth Zakk experienced a delay in his development and was investigated for a variety of conditions, but the family still had no answers. He remained un-diagnosed for 10yrs which made things very difficult for his parents. Zakk was eventually diagnosed in Jan 2016, with a rare genetic disorder, a mutation of his GNA01 gene, he is one of 30 cases worldwide.
At age 8yrs, as part of this condition, Zakk developed a problem with his movement and it became very difficult to keep him safe, he spend extended periods of time in hospital, sedated for his own safety due to the violent, uncontrolled, involuntary movements. With no diagnosis it was a very distressing time for him, his parents and family, not knowing what the future held for him. During this time, Zakk was bed bound, as no chair was safe for him and he couldn’t travel in a car safely.
Emma and Lee’s friends set up a fundraising page to buy a special chair so that he could get out of bed and it was so successful that there was a surplus amount. With that surplus and a generous donation from the Shepshed Lions Club the family were able to buy him a Wheelchair Access Vehicle. That vehicle transformed his quality of life at that time, allowing him to go home for periods of time away from the hospital, Emma said” The donation from the Shepshed Lions made a tremendous difference to us all. Without it, Zakk would not have been able to leave the hospital or get out and about today. We will be forever very grateful for what the Shepshed Lions Club did for us, they visited us in our home and were very supportive. We would like to thank them so much for helping us at such a distressing time in Zakk’s life”
Shepshed Lions Club help Junior’s Journey to happen.
Shepshed Lions Club helped Junior Exon, a 3 years old Shepshed boy, helped to fund surgery to enable Junior to walk. Here is what his mother, Rosie, has to say:
“Our son Junior who is 3 year’s old was born with Cerebral Palsy. At the age of 2 Junior was booked in to have an operation called Selective Dorsal Rhizotomy. This involves cutting the damaged nerves in his spinal cord to remove the spasticity that caused tightness in his legs and feet. This spasticity made it impossible for Junior to walk independently.
The operation was not funded by the NHS so it was necessary for us (the family) to raise the £60,000 ourselves so we embarked on “Junior’s Journey”, and set about fundraising. The problem was we only had 9 months to raise the money, and this was a massive task. I approached Shepshed Lions Club in the hope they might help a little towards “Junior’s Journey”. I was not expecting a lot, as there are a lot of children in need of help. However, I was surprised ad delighted when Shepshed Lions Club donated £2000, which made an absolutely massive amount of difference, not only by the donation alone but also by publicly sharing “Juniors Journey” so that it touched the hearts of others who also approached me wanting to help.
We will always be forever grateful for the Lions help for changing our son’s life. In June 2016 our son Junior walked independently across our front lounge. If it wasn’t for Shepshed Lions Club this would never have been possible! Thank you Shepshed Lions from the bottom of our hearts.”
These stories are the reason that we do what we do as a group of volunteers working in our community and we are proud of what we achieve, but it is very important to remember that we could not help these children without the very generous support of the wonderful people of Shepshed.
We are also looking for anyone who may wish to sponsor all or part of the event. As always we have various sponsorship packages available, so if you require any further information please do not hesitate to contact Lion Bob Lilley on 07585 772902 or by e-mail at email@example.com.
2nd October 2017
Shepshed Carnival 28th August 2017.
What a fantastic day!!!!! The sun was shining all day and our fabulous community turned out in large numbers to support this annual charity event. This was our 8th Annual Charity Carnival and we really enjoyed the event. It is hard work but the result made all that worthwhile and we raised a substantial amount of money that will be spent in support of our community.
A very special guest opened the Carnival this year, Junior Exon, who had had two major operations to enable him to walk. Seeing him do just that, walk into the arena was a fantastic and very moving sight. He was with The Right Honourable Nicky Morgan,MP, Chair of Shepshed Town Council Claire Poole and Lion President Bob Lilley.
We had lots of really positive comments on Social Media about the Carnival that inspires us to do it again next year. We try to make the event bigger and better each year so look out for next year!!
It is important that everyone knows that without our sponsors, this popular community get together could not take place. We would like to thank our sponsors for their generous support. The sponsors were Primo IT, Meggit, Sherwood’s Transport, Charnwood Michelmersh Brick Holdings, Robert Newbold Flooring, Loughborough Building Society, Hallcroft Opticians, The Crown Hotel, Campbell Scientific and Bill and Winnie Cooling.
There was a large variety of stalls at the event that offered a wide choice of goods. We would like to thank the stallholders for their support.
It would be remiss of us to mention the support we have had from the fantastic public of Shepshed who generously supported this year’s Carnival. Lion President Bob Lilley said, “ We start the planning of Carnival in January and the work steadily builds up throughout the Spring and Summer resulting in the spectacular Carnival we had this year. Every penny raised will be spent on charitable good causes in our community. I would like to thank everyone who contributed to making the day a special day for our community”.