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Community Service Projects

Flags Over Brazos Project

This project was adopted by Bryan Noon Lions to help stimulate patriotism in the Community and to serve as a fundraising project.  On five patriotic holidays, this year 850 American Flags were displayed at homes and businesses that support this project.  The days flags are displayed include: Flag Day in June, Independence Day in July, Veterans Day in November, Presidents Day in February and Memorial Day In May.  A high percentage of BNL members are a part of the teams, which service a particular area of the Community.  Each year over 800 volunteer hours are devoted to servicing the program and actually displaying the flags and returning them to the flag barn.  Of particular interest is that fact that student organizations at Bryan High School decided on patriotism as their theme for this year.  Bryan Noon Lions were contacted and we arranged to display 36 American Flags around the Bryan High School Campus on the above named holidays.  This project is our signature effort.  It grosses between $17-19,000 per year income to the Club.  Using some of the same equipment BNL has piggybacked a program to display Aggie Spirit Flags on football game days, when the Aggies are playing at home.

 

Texas Reds Steak & Grape Festival

In 2007 Bryan Noon Lions were contacted by City of Bryan officials, asking us to join with them in developing a Festival in Downtown.  The Festival would celebrate the Beef and Wine Industries history in the Brazos Valley.  Specifically they ask us to administer the Grape Stomp section of the Festival.  Members of BNL worked with the Parks & Recreation Department in planning the event, developing equipment needed (mainly the stomp tub that would be used by contestants in stomping grapes and allowing for the collection of juice from the stomp).  In June 2007, the 1st Festival was held with BNL members volunteering on the day of the event to actually produce and determine winners of the Grape Stomp.  The entire Festival was a tremendous success in 2007 and in 2008 things improved considerably.  Estimated attendance at the 2009 event was 25,000 people.  There were 103 teams of two in the Grape Stomp competition.  Twenty-three teams were in the steak cook-off contest.  This event allowed BNL to demonstrate their ability to organize and conduct projects.  In 2008 the State Convention and Visitors Bureau gave the City of Bryan their Home Town Hero Award for the success of the Texas Reds Festival in showcasing Bryan and The Brazos Valley.

Apache Tree Project

The Apache Foundation in Houston sponsors a program, which had as its objective to plant 1,000,000 trees over a 3-year period.  Apache Foundation accepts grant proposals from non-profit and civic type organizations who have a plan to effectively use the trees which Apache provides.  Bryan Noon Lions developed a proposal last fall to obtain 100 of the five gallon container sized trees, which would be planted in City Parks.  The Grant was accepted and the 100 trees were received and gifted to the Bryan Parks and Recreation Department.  Some of the trees were used to make initial planting in new park facilities and others were used in some of the older parks in the City where trees have died or been damaged due to storms, etc.  This is the 3rd year of participation in the program.  To date, 175 of the five gallon container sized trees, have been planted in city parks.  Apache Foundation is thrilled with the BNL participation in this program and its impact on the parks in Bryan.

 Brazos Valley Food Bank

 

Fourteen BNL members gathered on Saturday, January 14 at the Brazos Valley Food Bank ready to work.  Each of the group volunteered 3 hours of labor.  Part of the morning was spent packaging boxes of food for distribution to agencies in the area that in turn make it available to needy families.  The remainder of the morning was devoted to sorting pallets of donated food from a grocery chain.  The task was to sort it into containers by food groups and to eliminate any items deemed to be contaminated or broken packaging.  This is done at least one time per year and will be expanded in coming years.

 

Youth Related Service Projects

Scholarships 

Each year our Club provides three ($1500) scholarships to graduating seniors at Bryan High School.  One of the scholarships is partially paid for with receipts from a scholarship fund investment.  This fund was established by a former member and the scholarship is named the Omar Smith Scholarship in his honor.  The remainder of the funds for all the scholarship comes from Club activity funds.

 

Peace Poster Contest 

Eighty-seven students from Jane Long Middle School and St. Joseph Middle School participated in the annual Peace Poster Contest.  This year’s theme was 'The Power of Peace'.  The winners were all from Jane Long Middle School.  Cash prizes of $100, $50, and $25 were awarded to the winners.  All students that participated were treated to a Pizza Party.

 

Coats for Elementary School Kids 

Twenty-two Bryan Elementary students received new coats from our Club.  These students were identified by staff and teachers as being in need of warn clothing.  The staff and teachers provided us with sizes needed and ideas to customize these coats for the individual students.  Students were excited about having new coats.

 

Helping with Christmas Cheer 

The BNL Club volunteered at the annual MASH (Make a Smile Happen) drive on December 4.  Eight members volunteered 16 hours.  Members collected gifts and money from the public as they drove through the MASH tent area.  BNL contributed $250 to the drive.  Sponsored by Bryan Broadcasting Inc., this drive is in its 25th year.  Toys were received for 5,000 youth in the 7 County Brazos Valley areas.  Additionally, BNL contributed $500 to the Blue Christmas program sponsored by the Bryan Police Department.  This program targets children from needy families in Bryan.

 

Drug Awareness Speech Contest 

Our Club sponsored a Drug Awareness Speech Contest this year.  The winner competed at the District Contest.  Although our selected student impressed our Club with his presentation, he did not win at the District Contest.

 

Career and Technical Education Student-of-the-Month 

Partnering with the Bryan Independent School District, we will recognize a Student-of-the-Month from the various units within Career and Technical Education Units.  The student and his/her sponsoring teacher will attend a BNL Club meeting where the student will receive the award and address our group.  It is our desire to give the student an opportunity to meet and visit with business owners, professionals in various organizations and disciplines during the process.  At the end of the year a Student-of-the-Year will be selected from the Students-of-the-Month.  That student and his/her teacher will attend our annual meeting (in June) where recognition will be given and a cash award presented.

 

Eye Exams and Glasses 

Each year our Club budgets $4500 to provide eye exams and glasses for needy students and a few adults with extreme needs.  For many years we have had an agreement with nurses in the Bryan School System that, when vision screening is done and there is a student with need for glasses and the family has financial problems, we will provide them.  Referrals from other schools and adults referred from agencies are analyzed on an individual basis.

 

Other Youth Advocacy Groups 

BNL has had a working relationship with Boy Scout Troop 976 for a number of years.  The troop has increased membership and advancement by members has increased greatly.  Some of this enthusiasm is spurred by an extensive camping program.  We provide $1000 per year to support a scholarship program to help scouts pay for the camping program when they cannot afford the fees.  This year our Club is supporting additional programming efforts by the Junior Achievement Program.  We are giving $500 for use in this programming effort.

 

Scotty’s House 

Scotty’s House is a local youth advocacy group, which provides a home type atmosphere for youth and parents of troubled youth.  Our Club makes an annual budgetary commitment to them.  This year the item is $500.

 

Support for Junior Livestock Show 

We budget $1000 each year to provide $50 add-on prize to 20 youth exhibitors at the show.  These add-ons are provided to youth  who are recommended by their adult supervisors and teachers.

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