Lions boost eye health, future hospice


The Kanata-Hazeldean Lions largest donation in its history goes to Ottawa Hospital Eye Institute on Nov. 25. The $25,000 will help purchase a piece of equipment expected to make better diagnoses of eye problems that often require surgery at the institute. From left are Dr. Kashif Baig of the institute, Lion Todd Sloan and Kanata-Hazeldean Lions Club president Peter Henry and his guide dog Kane.
Kanata Lions Club members made one of their largest-ever donations on Nov. 25, and then a few minutes later turned around and donated even more.

First came $15,000 to the Hospice Ottawa West campaign, earmarked to furnish a room in the future hospice.

A cheque for $25,000 was then presented to representatives of the Ottawa Hospital Eye Institute; money that will buy a piece of equipment to more accurately diagnose eye problems.

“We’ve run euchres, we used to do bingo, and we operate the hall and (hall) rentals,” she said, adding the club has more recently added scrapbooking days and a day of e-waste collection. “In the past we focused on smaller donations,” Feltmate added, although the club has purchased vans for the police, fire and Western Ottawa Community Resource Centre.

The club members decided to buy a piece of equipment for the eye institute because Lions clubs around the world dedicate themselves to prevention of blindness and support for the blind. Feltmate said Lions have worked on sight issues since Helen Keller attended a Lions convention in 1925 and challenged members to act as “Knights of the Blind.”

Since 1990, two international Lion campaigns have raised more than $400 million to fund work on preventable and reversible blindness.

The open house event on Nov. 25 was held at the Lion Dick Brule Community Centre, which also hosted a brainstorming session earlier this year to choose which charitable causes to support.

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