Serving NW Lions Clubs
The Northwest Lions Foundation provides funding and services to Lions Clubs in Washington and Northern Idaho to help them accomplish sight and hearing missions in their own communities.
The Northwest Lions Foundation is an operating unit of the Lions World Vision Institute (“LWVI”). LWVI is the new name of SightLife and the Lions Eye Institute, following their merger in August, 2022.
SightLife, based in Washington state, was founded in 1969 as the Northwest Lions Eye Bank. It underwent several name changes and has reorganized several times over the years as it expanded its scope and service area and joined with other orgainizations. Before changing its name to SightLife in 2008, it was known as the Northwest Lions Foundation for Sight & Hearing.
The Lions Eye Institute, based in Florida, was formed in 1973, and has grown into a hub for ocular tissue preparation, musculoskeletal tissue recovery, research, and pediatric vision health to transform the lives of people around the world.
LWVI is headquartered in Tampa, Florida, with satellite offices throughout Florida, Louisiana, Washington state, California and Pennsylvania, with additional tissue recovery services in Montana, Idaho and Wisconsin.
Programs And Operations
Northwest Lions Foundation operations currently include:
- Health screenings through Mobile Health Screening Units
- Patient–Care Grants to help Lions Clubs pay for vision and hearing care to low–income persons
- Project Support Grants for persons, programs, and campaigns that improve sight and hearing
- The Lions Hearing Aid Program that provides hearing aids to persons who can not otherwise afford them
The Northwest Lions Foundation's operations, which are known as the “Lions Programs”, are funded by:
- The Lions Programs,
- Contributions by Lions and Lions clubs,
- Charitable contributions from the public,
- Periodic funding events, such as White Cane Days, and
- Distributions from the Northwest Lions Endowment, a Washington nonprofit corporation.
The Northwest Lions Foundation is managed by a Board of Trustees. The Trustee's have the authority to expand, contract, or otherwise modify the Lions Programs.
Management and operation of the Foundation is governed by Articles for Operation.
The Northwest Lions Foundation Board of Trustees is comprised of, but not necessarily limited to, individuals representing each of the subdistricts within Multiple District 19 of Lions Clubs International.
|1969||The Lions clubs in Washington and Idaho establish the “Northwest Lions Eye Bank” in response to the Lions Clubs International global sight mission.|
|1979||Lions Clubs International adds assistance to those who are deaf or hard–of–hearing to mission.|
|1979||The Lions clubs in Washington and Northern Idaho create the “Lions Hearing Conservation Foundation” in response to Lions Clubs International's expanded mission.|
|1998||Northwest Lions clubs merge the Northwest Lions Eye Bank and Lions Hearing Conservation Foundation into one organization, the “Lions Sight & Hearing Foundation of Washington and Northern Idaho”.|
|1999||The Lions Early Assessment Program (“LEAP”) is established to make newborn hearing screening a routine practice in the Pacific Northwest.|
|2000||LEAP joins with the Seattle Childrens Hospital's Division of Pediatric Audiology in an effort to implement statewide universal newborn hearing screening in hospitals across Washington State.|
|2001||The Lions Sight & Hearing Foundation of Washington and Northern Idaho merges with the Montana Eye Bank, and becomes the “Northwest Lions Foundation for Sight & Hearing”.|
|2004||The Northwest Lions Foundation for Sight & Hearing launches AUDIENT, a national nonprofit alliance bringing low–cost, high–quality hearing care to income–qualified individuals.|
|2006||The Northwest Lions Foundation for Sight & Hearing” is renamed to “SightLife” to better reflect its national and international services.|
|2008||SightLife is established as the parent organization of both the Northwest Lions Foundation for Sight & Hearing and AUDIENT, and creates the “Northwest Lions Foundation” as an operating unit of SightLife dedicated to supporting the needs of Lions Clubs in Washington and Northern Idaho in thier quests to provide for hearing and vision programs in their communities.|
|2010||The Northwest Lions Foundation accepts the challenge to promote Disbetes Awareness into its program.|
|2022||Florida based Lions Eye Institute acquires SightLife under a merger agreement executed in August, 2022. Founded in 1973, Lions Eye Institute has given the gift of sight to over 160,000 people worldwide since its inception. The two nonprofits have over 100 years of combined experience. Since the inception of both programs, they have brought the “Gift of Sight” to more than 500,000 men, women, and children worldwide.|
|2023||On May 5, 2023, the Lions Eye Institute for Transplant and Research and SightLife announced that the two organizations have come together as a single nonprofit corporation under the new name of Lions World Vision Institute (“LWVI”). This transition marks the full integration of SightLife and the Lion Eye Institute for Transplant and Research, which now serve as the largest eye bank, tissue recovery, preventative care, and ocular research center in the world. The Northwest Lions Foundation is an independent operating unit of LWVI.|