Letter from Convention


As you approach the convention centre at Wokefield Park, it starts to dawn on the senses that this is going to be a professional week-end.  The banner on the entrance proudly announces that Lions Clubs International is here, having served our community since 1950, as do a series of identical banners along the winding drive.

The Barn Dance on the first night draws hoots of laughter (yee-ha!) as we all try to follow the caller's instructions, switching partners every other verse and trying to avoid falling over.  The whole of the lobby erupts when we culminate in a dance where everyone seems to be finally dancing the right steps, but not at the same time as each other...

Saturday morning arrives and the long hours of planning that our host club, Fleet Lions, have completed becomes apparent.  The conference hall fills to the brim with delegates, their families and guests for an opening ceremony befitting an organisation our size.  Then, down to business.  District Governor Judith Goodchild at the helm and what a refreshing change: formal reports kept to a minimum, procedures minimised, but still keen debate and lots of laughter.

Then we are hit by the thunderbolt from Canada.  Past International Director, Lion Dr Patti Hill delivers one of the most powerful, inspiring, speeches we have ever heard at conference.  She enthrals us, empowers us, motivates us and leaves us all shouting that - when we are asked to help our community or fellow Lions Clubs - we will answer that call with a loud reply of "Yes, I can do that".

All around the conference hall we have stands offering advice on various Lions projects and companies offering services to clubs; the range of workshops also prove very popular.  After lunch Ian Murdoch delivers a speech that leaves us impressed with the work of Moorfields Eye Hospital and the long-standing support of Lions to the work they undertake.  We move on to a range of well-deserved awards and a highly successful convention draws to a close.  But not before we are left in awe at the qualities of our Young Ambassador, Rebecca Bellworthy and the immensely talented performance of our Young Musician, Daniel Bovey - both of whom attract spontaneous standing ovations.

Before you know it we're all booted and suited and ‘gambling' the night away at the Banquet and Ball.  This was Lions at their best, having fun while working together to support their communities.

Some heavy feet made their way to the conference hall on Sunday morning, but the lively open forums left no room for sleepyheads.  This was convention at its best, mixing a very professional business agenda with loads of fun.  More than that, we feel part of an international organisation that achieves amazing things when we work together.

Will you be at your next District Convention?
The correct answer, of course, will be "Yes, I can do that".

David Taylor


Diamond Convention logo
Friday 19th March 2010