More than £5,000 was awarded to 11 local clubs, organisations or individuals at the Horsham Lions Youth Grants Project last Thursday (October 3).
A total of 963 of the Horsham district’s young people were indirectly helped by donations made on the night by Horsham Lions Club, which totalled £5,260.
Lions president Tom Osborne hosted the evening, while fellow club members Tom George, Jacqui Ovenden and John Williams were instrumental in organising the event.
The ceremony was the second organised by the fundraising club after a similar initiative two years ago.
County Times news editor Theo Cronin joined Mr Osborne for the presentation at County Hall North, and celebrated the club’s generosity on behalf of the newspaper.
Recognised on the evening were Liam, Jake and Daniel Dickson, described by Mr Osborne as ‘three talented musicians who happen to be members of the same family’.
Jake, 16, immediately showed the Lions’ investment to be a good one by performing two numbers on the cello for the ceremony’s guests.
He thanked the Lions Club for the help given to himself, Liam, 14, and Daniel, 17, which will help towards the cost of their trips.
He told the County Times: ”It is amazing. There are so many different organisations I haven’t seen before that do really interesting things.
“I think we have worked hard to get to where we are - we have certainly put in the hours - and it is nice to see the achievement recognised in a ceremony like this.”
The three brothers all play instruments with either the Horsham Youth Concert Band or the West Sussex Youth Orchestra.
The 1st Roffey Guides, who need to raise £26,000 for a trip to South Africa next August, received a boost in their fundraising from the Lions Club.
The Guides will either be building a two rooom home for orphans or decorating the children’s home.
14-year-old Guide Alex Gallacher said: ”It was nerve-wracking going up (to collect the donation)!
“We are very grateful that we got the grant - it is very exciting. It is nice to see how people help in Horsham.”
A grant was issued to Horsham Life Saving Club, to help subsidise the recently increased cost of lifesaving exams.
Chairman and instructor David Slade said: “We would like to say a tremendous thanks - it makes it so much easier for us to operate a viable outfit. We are very grateful.
“What we are anticipating is it may increase the amount of people that want to come to us to learn about survival and other safety skills.”
Horsham Lions Club also donated enough money to Sunbeam Swimming Club so that two members of the swimming club for disabled people can attend the national finals.
Robin Ayers, 58, is one of the original members of the club that was set up 31 years ago.
He said: “We bring people together so disabled people can swim, and feel confident about doing it.”
A number of sports clubs received funding on the night - Horsham Rugby Club to purchase flags to mark team bases and help lost children at festivals, Horsham Cricket Club to purchase an automatic tennis ball feeder and Horsham Trinity Cricket Club to purchase training mats.
Also helped were St John’s Ambulance, the Springboard Project, Bluebelles Baton Twirlers and Horsham Youth Centre.