next article - back to CLERF

WHY: Macular Degeneration is the leading cause of new blindness in those over the age of 50 years. There are no adequate treatments to prevent, slow or cure this progressive eye disease. Over 30 million persons will be impacted by Macular Degeneration within the next decade.

GOAL: To raise 5 million dollars to support the establishment of a Lions Macular Degeneration Center at Yale University.

SOURCE OF FUNDS: The Connecticut Lions through the Connecticut Lions Eye Research Foundation have committed to raising 500,000 dollars. The Yale Eye Center Advisory Board will raise the balance of 4.5 million dollars.

TIME FRAME: The joint campaign is designed to collect all monies and pledge commitments within two years, although a maximum of five years is allowed for the fulfillment and completion of pledges.

USE OF FUNDS: The monies raised will be placed in a restricted account designated solely for use in creating and developing a Macular Degeneration Research Center, including necessary space renovation, equipment and scientific staff. Lions monies will primarily be used for equipment purchase and support.

RECOGNITION: A named area of research space (i.e., Lions Macular Degeneration Research Center) will be established within the Yale Eye Center, and a plaque acknowledging the role of the Connecticut Lions will be placed in a highly visible area of the eye center. Additional naming and recognition opportunities may be offered for major donations and/or designated equipment purchases.

PLAN: The Connecticut Lions Eye Research Foundation and the Yale Eye Center Advisory Board will develop the project parameters to collaborate and coordinate maximization of effort. The campaign will be promoted through the creation of videos, brochures, equipment lists, and personalized contacts with a view towards fully launching the campaign in the fall of 2000. Media participation including announcements and publications in Connecticut Magazine, television and newspaper coverage, Yale newsletters and publications, and Connecticut Lions publications will be developed to encourage support of this project. The Lions Foundation will also support this project with an extensive statewide club visitation program. A series of presentations by Yale faculty to Lions members and other groups around the state will begin with a Lions Foundation Kick Off dinner and tours of the Yale Eye Center this fall. The campaign will also seek major endorsements by prominent individuals, politicians and corporate personalities within the State of Connecticut. Grant funding from various sources including Lions Clubs International will be pursued. Special events (e.g. celebrity dinners, a fund raising cruise, and state wide raffles) will supplement club fund raising efforts. Individual contributions to the Foundation's Millennium Fund ($25 to $1,000) will be solicited from Lions and others. Individuals contributing $1,000 or more will receive special recognition. Lions Clubs will be asked to support all efforts by keeping members informed and to raise additional monies through new fund raising projects.