I am a member of the Hermiston Lions. In fact, I am the chair of the Sight and Hearing Committee. The Lions focus in community service is sight and hearing. The majority of the money our club raises goes to community members who need assistance in paying for eyeglasses or hearing aids. With the down turn in the economy we have had an increase in applications for assistance. Just this past week we exhausted our budget for financial assistance until we raise additional funds.
Last week I listened to my answering machine and found a message from a 70+ year old woman, Sarah, who had applied for assistance from the Lion’s Foundation to get hearing aids. The foundation refurbishes donated hearing aids and provides them free-of-charge to candidates who have been referred by a local Lions Club. The local club provides funding for the applicant to get hearing testing and fitting of the aids.
Sarah said “Thank you, thank you so much. I can hear again. Thank you for once again allowing me to be who I am. I can hear again. Thank you.”
I could hear the tears in her voice.
There are some frustrations in administering a charitable fund. I’ve had applicants argue with me because they wanted more money than our club allows. Some applications contain untruthful information. People get angry if we can’t fund their application or if they don’t meet the guidelines for eligibility. I rarely hear back from the people we have helped.
Sarah was an exception. Her message made my day and reminded me that one small action can change a life. I am grateful for the opportunity to help.