Harleston Lions Club’s desperate plea for new blood

Harleston Lions are appealing for more volunteer members.Pictured is President of the Harleston Lion

Harleston Lions are appealing for more volunteer members.Pictured is President of the Harleston Lions, Mike Withinshaw. - Credit: Eastern Daily Press © 2016

It has been a big part of the community, from raising money to putting up the Christmas tree, but the Harleston Lions Club could close unless it attracts a deluge of new members.

Set up 30 years ago, the club has helped to place defibrillators in the villages around Harleston and has helped numerous families which have suffered hardships.

But current president Mike Withinshaw has said the club's inability to recruit new members has meant that unless there is influx of volunteers, the club will call it a day on December 31.

Mr Withinshaw, who has been a member for 27 years, said: 'We cannot get new blood in and we are now in our 60s and 70s. It is not a modern thing. People just are not volunteering these days.

'If there is an organisation looking for volunteers and everybody was 60 or 70-years-old, you would not want to join.'

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There are currently 12 members at the club and Mr Withinshaw, who has been president seven times, said he has a lot of good memories from his time there.

'We have been a force in Harleston and have done an awful lot and it is sad we have come to this decision,' he said. 'Helping individual people has been rewarding. Seeing a family who has all sorts of problems and we can go in and help them. I have been proud to be a Lion.

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'It would be lovely if the Lions Club would be here next year. I would be really chuffed.'

To volunteer, call Mike Withinshaw on 01379 852362.

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