Richmond Lions Club 2020 Christmas Cheer a big success

The generosity of the Richmond/North Gower/Fallowfield/Munster area was made apparent during the past two weekends.  The Richmond & District Lions Club had been unable to present many of their annual fundraisers for the community due to the pandemic and health restrictions. However, with the Christmas season upon us, we decided to hold our annual Bottle Drive. This has traditionally made enough money for the Lions to present the donation forms/postage for our Christmas Cheer. Due to the overwhelming response, four trailer loads of empties were returned to the Manotick Beer Store to cash in. (Many thanks to their patient staff members!) We were able to pay the cost of printing and postage, and have enough left over to start a healthy amount for the Christmas Cheer program. Our annual bottle drive is done “in Memory of Sarah McCarthy”.

Shirley Reddick and Brenda McConnell of the Richmond and District Lions Club got a tour of the Fo Guang Shan Temple and received a donation from Venerable Miao Qi and BLIA executives Yi Luo and Nancy Zhang of the Buddha’s Light International Association. Submitted photo

Christmas Cheer began many years ago when local radio station CFRA included the Lions clubs in the area in an annual Snowsuit telethon. After that program came to an end, local Lions clubs began their traditions. Richmond & District Lions have raised thousands of dollars for the Richmond Food Bank over the years.

This year, a new congregation in the community reached out to Treasurer Shirley Reddick.  As a result, we were pleased to accept a donation from Fo Guang Shan Temple.

Report from Fo Guang: BLIA Ottawa (Buddha’s Light International Association affiliated with Fo Guang Shan Temple) has recently created a positive affinity with the Richmond & District Lions Club through their Christmas Cheer charitable donation campaign. The club’s treasurer, Shirley Reddick, and volunteer, Brenda McConnell, were invited to the temple to accept the cheque. Venerable Miao Qi and BLIA executives Yi Luo and Nancy Zhang gave them a tour of the new temple, including the Main Shrine and library. They also described the classes offered at the temple and events hosted by BLIA, and plans of the Temple. This was the club members’ first time experiencing Buddhism, and they were enthralled by Buddhism’s kindness and harmony, and they were also fascinated by the grand solemnity of the temple. The members were also interested in the meditation classes, vegetarian cooking classes, yoga, children’s classes, scouting program, etc. The Lions members were very grateful for the temple’s support of the local community and were more than happy to introduce Fo Guang Shan Temple and BLIA to local friends and families. They hope to work with the temple in various ways in the future, and wished the temple a smooth completion so the local community is further enriched with more diversity. We hope that this partnership will continue, and we hope that the Lions and the Buddhist community will become close associates.  

The Lions also presented a stationary float in the Richmond Drive-by Parade. The parade was a great success- the Lion members enjoyed decorating the float, and we received so many compliments.

The Lions wish to thank all those who donated money and empties so generously this year during a particularly difficult time for everyone. We wish to thank Lion Dick Salmon for providing Christmas trees for the float, and we especially want to thank Mike Harvey for the use of his premises for the donation location, and also for the use of his trailer for our float. Thanks to all Lions members who were able to assist with the Bottle Drive, the Christmas Cheer, and the Parade.

The Richmond & District Lions wish to thank everyone in the community a Merry Christmas, a wonderful holiday season, and we hope to be able to return to at least some of our regular events in 2021!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *