Knoxville, Tennessee - United States
District 12N
Lions are volunteer members of local clubs where they enjoy fellowship, develop leadership capabilities, and dedicate part of their free time to help those in need all over the world, while making their individual communities a better place in which to live. The clubs are chartered by Lions Clubs International, the world's largest service club organization.

Our Origin

In 1917 a Chicago, Illinois insurance agent named Melvin Jones founded Lions Clubs International to help the less fortunate. The organization was involved in various social projects until the 1925 International Convention when Helen Keller challenged Lions to become "Knights of the Blind in the crusade against darkness." This is still the main focus of Lionism within the local community and around the world. Even with this focus, Lions also meet a variety of other needs that are identified in their communities.

Our Motto: "We Serve"

The Lions of Tennessee have worked millions of hours and raised millions of dollars in our communities as
we truly live our motto, "WE SERVE."

World Wide Growth

The International Association of Lions Clubs has grown to be the largest service club organization in the world, representing over 46,000 clubs with about 1,360,000 members in 209 countries and geographical areas around the world.

Vision Screening Children - A Major Project of the Tennessee Lions

In addition to the projects described on the Clubs Project area of this website , and the many ways the local clubs serve their communities, the Lions of Tennessee have teamed up with the Department of Ophthalmology at
Vanderbilt Children's Hospital with the goal of providing quality eye care for children statewide. Lions Clubs
across the state raised over $4 million for a project that created the Tennessee Lions Eye Center (TLEC) at
Vanderbilt Children Hospital, a pediatric ophthalmology center.

From the beginning, an important part of this unique partnership has been the Tennessee Lions Eye Center
Outreach Program, the "clinic without wails," a program of free vision screening of young children in their own neighborhoods, with evaluation of the screening and follow-up by professionals at TLEC. Trained Lions members screen children from 12 months to 72 months of age in their own neighborhoods to detect eye disorders that can lead to serious eye problems and/or blindness at an early age when treatment is most effective. The process is noninvasive which makes it ideal for use with young children. Vision screenings are evaluated by Vanderbilt physicians, and those who have potential eye problems are referred to ophthalmologists or optometrists in their local area for a more detailed examination.


Any person of legal majority, good moral character and good reputation in his or her community may be granted membership in a chartered Lions Club. If there were more of us, we could help more people!

To learn how you may become a Lion, contact a member of your local Lions Club. Check out http://tnlions.org/member-resources/ to learn more about a Lions Club in East Tennessee or http://be-a-lion.org/ for Lions Clubs anywhere in the world.

Lions District 12-N Charities, Inc. is a 501 (c) (3) non-profit corporation and a Registered Tennessee Charities Organization
Who Are the Lions?