History of Lions Clubs International
In 1917, Melvin Jones, a 38-year-old Chicago business leader, told members of his local business club they should reach beyond business issues and address the betterment of their communities and the world. Jones' group, the Business Circle of Chicago, agreed.
After contacting similar groups around the United States, an organizational meeting was held on June 7, 1917, in Chicago, Illinois, USA. The new group took the name of one of the invited groups, the "Association of Lions Clubs," and a national convention was held in Dallas, Texas, USA in October of that year. A constitution, by-laws, objects and a code of ethics were approved.
Within three years, Lions became an international organization. Since then, we've earned high marks for both integrity and transparency. We're a well-run organization with a steady vision, a clear mission, and a long – and proud – history.
To be the global leader in community and humanitarian service.
To empower volunteers to serve their communities, meet humanitarian needs, encourage peace and promote international understanding through Lions clubs.
Who are the Lions?
Lions are an international network of 1.35 million men and women dedicated to making a difference locally and globally.
What do Lions do?
Lions meet the needs of our communities and the world, ranging from assisting the visually impaired and working with local youth to medical missions and disaster relief.
How are Lions relevant to today's world?
Since 1917, Lions have met the needs in their communities and continued to improve the areas in which they live. As long as there are needs around the world, we will work to meet those needs.
How do I become a Lion?
If you are interested in becoming a Lion, contact your local Lions club and express interest in learning more.
Are there women Lions?
Yes. Women are the single fastest growing segment of Lions.
As in other community organizations, is the membership of Lions declining?
No. Lions membership is increasing. Programs such as Family Clubs, Leo Clubs, Campus Lions Clubs and New Century Lions Clubs, are helping us adapt to meet the growing needs of the world around us.
I would like to volunteer in my community but why should I do so as a Lion?
Lions meet the needs of those in their own communities as well as around the world and we have fun doing it. Working together locally and internationally, the worldwide network of Lions has vastly more resources and is able to accomplish much more than individuals and small groups working alone.