GALLIPOLIS — The Gallipolis Leo Club, Tuesday, shopped for over 100 children for Christmas and will have assisted to provide socks for over 70 area veterans in mid-December.
“The Elks help with so much with the Leo Club and it’s just spectacular,” said Leo Club Advisor Sandra Mayes. “Lots of people help us and the Elks are a part of that. The latest we did with the kids to help veterans is our sock drive. We’ve accumulated more than 250 pairs of socks and the Elks are going to incorporate those socks in gift bags with a grant that they do every year. It feels good for us to have something to give the veterans at Christmas so they don’t feel forgotten.”
“We’ve got nursing homes in Meigs and in Gallia that all have veterans in them,” said Lodge Trustee Rick Borton. “We have a punch list and we have them filled out with what the veterans need and then we go back and pick them up. She takes her Leo Club and they go shopping with our $2000 Freedom grant.”
“The whole goal was to have a mature setting for the young adults from 16 to 18 who are Leo Club members to feel like adults and learn about skills needed to be future leaders in the community,” said Mayes of Leo Club in the past. “Leo Club focuses on leadership, public speaking and how to plan events as well. Because, once students leave high school, it’s a job skill to be able to communicate and present yourself well. Many of them want to continue being part of the community, so getting the networking tentacles out and keeping contacts so when they want to come up with their own ideas as adults, they then can follow through and create events in town, hopefully.”
Mayes said roughly 38 students are in Leo Club this year. It is a community group.
The advisor said funding also recently raised by area law enforcement in hate drives was also used by area Lion’s Club members and volunteers to buy gifts for area children as the group takes part in several respective initiatives through the season.
Dean Wright can be reached at 740-446-2134, ext. 2103.