BEAUMARIS Lions Club (Inc)

District 201V5, Victoria, Australia

Project of the Month: March - Story Dogs

This is Sophie. She is a very good girl. Sophie has just finished her training and will be starting at Sandringham Primary School next term. She has graciously allowed  Beaumaris Lions to sponor her.

Each month, we highlight an inspiring local community project on our front page. March's project is the utterly enchanting Story Dogs. The project was started by Leah Sheldon and Janine Sigley in 2009 in Murwillumbah, NSW. They first trialled the program in 2009 in their own children’s school, Murwillumbah East Public School.There was positive feedback from the students, the teachers, the principal and the parents. From there, Story Dogs expanded and has continued to grow and help all of Australia.  Here is what Graeme Base, Australian children's author and illustrator ( had to say about the project in 2019:

"It was at an outdoor book festival that I first came across Story Dogs. Squeezed between the crowded book marquees was a little tent in which sat three gorgeous dogs, happily accepting the adoration of all who came across them. Curious (and also wanting to pat them) I began chatting with the handler. It turned out they were specially chosen for their patient temperaments to sit with children with reading difficulties and listen to them read.

What a stunning idea!

Literacy is crucial to every child’s future, and those who fall behind when they are young inevitably struggle to catch up. What better way to break down the barriers that build up in such a child‘s mind than by sharing and explaining a book with a dog who needs a little help with some of the words…?

I am delighted to add my name in support of this inspired initiative - for the path to a happy and rewarding life is generously paved in well-read, dog-eared books!

Hooray for Story Dogs (woof!)"

We, at Beauie Lions, are delighted to be sponoring Sophie. Sophie is a Westie and resides with her domestic staff  Barry (our current vice-president) and his lovely wife Anne.  Sophie has just finished her training and will be starting at Sandringham Primary School next term.

To find out more about the project, feel free to contact us or visit

Project of the Month: February - Food for Change

Each month, we highlight an inspiring local community project on our front page. February's project is the fabulous Food for Change, founded by Matt Donovan in 2016 on the belief that nobody in Australia should go hungry.

The food charity grows and rescues food to support food relief organisations around the country feeding hungry Australians. Food for Change established their first farm in Clayton South, Victoria, in 2017 and is supported by local lions amongst many others. They are hoping to open their second farm in the Mornington Peninsula this year.

In addition to growing food, Food for Change run national food rescue programs. They formed a partnership with IGA stores where the stores use the Food for Change app to donate food that might otherwise go into the bin. In its six-month pilot period, the app provided over 30,000 meals to the hungry in Sydney. They also offer farmers a unique way to contribute via the on farms food rescue program. The program facilitates the rescue (and in some cases the harvesting) of food from farms - and provides you with a Tax Deduction to boot!

Food for Change makes it really easy for you to support them in a way that best suits your circumstances:

You can sign up to volunteer at  volunteer page here

If you a time poor you but have a little extra to spare, you can donate here  or subscribe to Food for Change’s Fresh Food Box subscription here.

If you are looking for further inspiration in this month of February, please visit Food for Change’s webpage here  and become a change agent because we believe that Matt is right – no Australian should go hungry.

Becoming a Lion

Lions club members are men and women who strive to make a difference in their local community as well as in communities worldwide. Their volunteer efforts go beyond the support of vision care, to addressing unmet health and education needs worldwide.

Interested in becoming a member? Click Here