Toc. Lions lead the way
Tocumwal Lions Club has been leading the way to help improve local health facilities, as well as their usual goodwill and service to the community.
The club’s work was recognised on Saturday morning when it was announced the Berrigan Shire Community Group of the Year.
The town has been calling for an ambulance station and through the leadership of the Lions Club and like-minded community members, a steering committee was formed.
The Lions offered the site of the old bowls club on Adams St — which it owns — as the perfect location to house the station.
Lions president Sandra Williams said the ambulance station would remain a top priority for the club.
‘‘The nearest ambulance stations are in Finley, Jerilderie, Deniliquin and Cobram — but Cobram is in Victoria so it’s different,’’ she said.
‘‘We set up the steering committee with the hope of getting the ambulance station built.
‘‘We’re not having much success at the moment because NSW Ambulance doesn’t think we need one.
‘‘Lions has the bowling club — now called the Care Centre — where we’ve offered to donate a rink for the ambulance.
‘‘Another part of the bowling club has been cordoned off and we have an artificial insemination laboratory and gymnasium there.’’
Health and community support have always been a top agenda item for Tocumwal Lions since it was formed 45 years ago, as evident when the club built the 10 bed Lions Village in the late 1980s and the Tocumwal Community Lions Hostel in 1999.
The ambulance station is not the only project it has helped drive in the last 12 months.
Mrs Williams said the club is also involved with many other community activities and events.
‘‘We do a lot of catering for funerals, weddings and other events like the races,’’ she said.
‘‘We do Children of Courage which rewards children with disabilities from all of District 6 — from Albury to beyond Echuca — for their abilities.
‘‘Lions host the junior public speaking competition each year, with school children in the district competing, and this year Tocumwal was lucky enough to win the district final.’’
Mrs Williams said there are plans with other local groups, including the Tocumwal RSL and Cobram Legacy, to establish independent living units.