Service inspired by public safety

Wednesday, January 11, 2012 - 20:00

When you think about the building of our country what comes to mind? Resilience, hard work, the unwavering pursuit of freedom, and the immeasurable sacrifice of so many would all top the list. Our country was founded, and has continued to be built, by people not so different from any of us. They were individuals who were trying to make their country, their community, and their homes better places to live. While very few of us may fundamentally change the world we live in, that doesn’t mean we can’t dramatically impact our surroundings. Sometimes great ideas are spawned from simple observations, other times great ideas are inspired by a casual conversation.

Over the past twenty years, many Lions projects have developed through the recognition of a need in public safety. While it is true the state and the city provide police and fire protection, there is always a limit to what they provide. One example of the limitation was identified in 1989. During the course of a casual conversation with a trooper in Palmer, a citizen (who happened to be a Lion) realized that the Valley didn’t have a K-9 unit. At the time, when a K-9 unit was needed, troopers had to wait for Anchorage police to respond — which, during a manhunt, one can image how time can be of the essence. Lions realized, together, they could do something to fill a need, and in the process help law enforcement and the community.

The Big Lake Lions teamed with the Sleeping Lady Lions, Eagle River Lions and Palmer Lions to purchase the very first K-9 unit stationed in the Valley. Since the first dog, Lions in our community have been proud to purchase multiple fully trained police dogs to help serve and protect our community and our neighboring communities. Beyond these four-legged officers, Lions clubs have purchased thermal imaging devices, and even ambulances, for fire departments in communities all across Alaska.

While the men and women in uniform protect us, if as a community we can provide them with a tool, a dog, or a vehicle that will save lives — or make their jobs a little safer — then we will work tirelessly to fill this need. Those charged with protecting us, are incredible public servants, but they are limited by the resources at their disposal. So, when you attend a Lion event and you buy a raffle ticket, or purchase a dinner, remember every dollar you spend goes back to the community in one form or another.

If you know of a need in our community, please give us a call, or stop by a meeting. For more information about Lions visit or call Amy at 301-9179.

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