The New Voices Initiative celebrates the extraordinary achievements of and contributions by women in Lions Clubs International. We’d like to recognize the following four women for their significant accomplishments in the areas of service, growth, leadership and marketing.
As you celebrate these four finalists, consider the important role that you played in supporting and empowering the women of Lions. Together, we are doing so much to make the world a better place. Together, our voices are inspiring people everywhere.
Let me introduce you to your New Voices!
Maria José Rodrigues Pinto
CA3 FOLAC, District LA-3
Maceio Panalto da Jacutinga Lions Club
Member since 2011
“My journey in Lions has been full of wonderful experiences and successes, but mostly of dreams come true.”
Lion Maria exemplifies the selfless service and unwavering kindness of Lions everywhere. Moved by the many needs within her community and empowered by our mission to make the world a better place for all, her service journey is a progression of confidence and vision.
Recognizing the need for diabetes education in her city and the indigenous population of her country, her response wasn’t a step – but a leap out of her comfort zone. She wrote a book titled, Alimente-se Bem para Viver Bem (Eat Well to Live Well), which illustrates the benefits of healthy lifestyles, especially for those living with diabetes. It is an indispensable resource available to the community as part of Lion Maria’s ongoing diabetes education initiatives.
Her enthusiasm has inspired many around her to action. Apart from her club, a church group that she started is also quick to mobilize and serve. Lion Maria has launched several educational programs. More than 200 participants have already signed up for an initiative to prevent the accidental administering of glucose serum to diabetics.
Lion Maria envisions chartering a specialty club for diabetics who will continue to educate and develop programs to support the community. Her vision includes a center that will serve as the standard of service within her district.
Her voice speaks for those who need our help.
CA5 OSEAL, District 356-C
Jeonju Dong Haeng Lions Club
Member since 2007
“After joining Lions clubs, I received more help than ever with the challenges I was facing. This experience greatly improved my life and the lives of those I served. I want to share that with everyone.”
Lion Mi demonstrates the enduring friendship and encouragement that Lions share with one another in clubs across every continent. Emboldened by personal experience and having witnessed firsthand the impact of Lions’ service, she now captivates and inspires her community to create a world that is defined by kindness and cooperation.
Envisioning a world in which peoples’ lives are dramatically improved by the actions of others may seem like wishful thinking. But, as Lion Mi tells her story, this daydream became a reality. Raising an autistic son with developmental disabilities requires tireless support, a magnanimous heart and an indomitable spirit. As she was raising her son, she began to realize the power of uncompromising kindness, which led her to becoming a Lion. She dedicated herself to serve, but was shocked to discover that despite her service to others, she was actually receiving more help than ever before.
Her spirit and encouragement has inspired many to begin their own service journey with Lions. Within four months of chartering a club, she grew its membership from 84 charter members to 200 Lions, becoming the largest club in her district. With so many contributing to the good of their community, they have made an incredible impact on their neighbors’ lives and continue to inspire others to action.
Her voice speaks comfort to those who need hope.
CA4 Europa, District 118-R
Fethiye Mugla Lions Club
Member since 2007
“My focus is on a peaceful world—one in which women can lead and speak without fear. As Lions, we are leading the way to a better world for all.”
Lion Zeynep embodies the innovative leadership and global perspective that helps Lions overcome obstacles every day. Inspired by the achievements and limitless potential of so many working together, she challenges the Lions in her district to reach beyond the horizon and accomplish incredible acts of kindness within their communities.
Embracing our mission to serve, Lion Zeynep has dedicated herself to empowering women in her community and raising environmental awareness across the region. Her focus on women’s issues has led her to organize several ambitious programs, including a district-wide symposium and an award-winning project called “Non-Violent Communication – Communication for Peace.” Both projects emphasize ending violence against women and empowering them through legal rights education. Her vision has helped create many opportunities for women, especially for mothers of disabled children.
Her initiative as a Lion, in civic organizations and professionally has made her a role model for many young men and women in her community and across her district. Her influence has empowered many women throughout Turkey to speak out on environmental causes. And her emphasis on peace and international relations demonstrates to the world what Lions can accomplish.
Her voice speaks guidance to those who share our vision.
CA6 ISAAME, District 306-A1
Colombo Host Lions Club
Ratmalana, Sri Lanka
Member since 2005
“I am inspired by the strength, resilience and generosity of the human spirit!”
Lion Shyana champions the vigilant advocacy and adaptability of Lions defending their communities from injustice. Motivated by the acts of unwavering selflessness she has witnessed in the lives and service of fellow Lions, she strives to promote the significant impact her club is making in lives of those in her community.
Elevating her club’s service through social media campaigns, Lion Shyana created the #StopShaming project to raise awareness about the controversial issue of cyber exploitation and violence against young women. The innovative campaign proved to be so successful in her community that it was included in the district plan for the upcoming year. Building on the success of this campaign, Lion Shyana is planning a broader effort to highlight violence against women. Implementing social media, workshops and the media, she is encouraging her club to speak out on behalf of those without a voice.
In recognition of the life-changing service that her club has performed, Colombo Host Lions Club was recently honored with the title of “Best Club of the District.” Lion Shyana believes that this title was bestowed upon the club because of its efforts to embrace technology and innovation to improve the lives of many. She is proud that her club is leading the way into the 21st century of service.
Her voice speaks for those who cannot.
Discover the impact that new voices are making around the world when you visit the New Voices website and learn how Lions Clubs International is celebrating their incredible contributions!
Remember to show your support on International Women’s Day and use the #BalanceforBetter and #NewVoices hashtags side by side on social media!
Karmeisha Boyd is the Women’s Initiative coordinator for Lions Clubs International.