After months of planning and preparation, the Lions Club of Canterbury Bankstown delivered their promise to provide an exceptional event. On the evening of 11 November 2022 at the Star Buffet in Bankstown RSL, the event was attended by over one hundred guests which included members of the club and other Lions clubs, families and friends, sponsors, and local dignitaries such as Mayor Khal Asfour with his wife Sally, Clr Bilal Elhayek, Clr Rachelle Harika, Clr George Zakhia, and Clr Charbel Abouraad of the council of the City of Canterbury Bankstown, alongside The Hon Wendy Lindsay, Member of Parliament for East Hills. The event was also attended by local media channels which included Future News represented by Lion Joe Khoury OAM, Oz Arab Media represented by Lion Remy Wehbe, and Sawt Sydney represented by Ms. Nada Farid.
PDG Jon Copson, who was the even MC, launched the event and welcomed all the guests and fellow Lions including DG Vin Pang, VDG Paul McInnes, IPDG Sunil Amaratunga and other members from a variety of Lions clubs including Parramatta, Lugarno, Blacktown, Blacktown Ponds, Sydney Autism Community, Manly, and others. After the welcome, the toast, and the reading of the Lions Ethics and Purposes, Mayor Khal Asfour and Ms. Wendy Lindsay MP said a word each congratulating the president Lion Christine Nassif Tadros and the members of the club for their achievement and highlighting the importance of Lions in the community especially with the looming recession. This was followed by an array of speeches by Lions including Zone 6 Chairperson Graham Estreich and IPDG Sunil Amaratunga who played important roles in the recharge of the club. After a fun break with songs by Sons of Mercury for the adults and fun with JellyBeeNa the Clown for the kids, DG Vin Pang said a word stressing on the importance of membership, and then he inducted four new members to the club.
After the conclusion of the induction ceremony, President Christine took the stage and expressed her gratitude to all guests and sponsors. She also talked about what the club can and will do in the community moving forward.
One of the most special highlights of the event was supposed to be a keynote speech by Erin Molan. Unfortunately, due to some last-minute personal issues, she was unable to attend; however, the event was taken to a higher than expected level through an impromptu keynote address by ABC TV Star Carol Ferrone from “Back in Time for Dinner”. Being also a national brand ambassador for Food Bank Australia, Carol brought deeper insight into how bad the hunger epidemic is in Australia, with one of six people suffering from it, 1.2 million of which are children. She also encouraged people to join Lions for the sense of community and serving one another.
At the conclusion of the event, three items were auctioned, which included an Official Match Soccer Ball from last season donated by Macarthur FC, a Bulldogs Jersey signed by the team, and a beautiful hamper donated by PARC Co. HAMPERS. Also, a host of raffle prizes were drawn. All in all, despite a few minor (and major) unexpected snags, the event was a resounding success based on the feedback received by the guests.
We would like to thank all the sponsors of the event: