By Hélène Arzeno

A flagship action of district 103 South West in favor of childhood cancer

Early participation 

“The Hyacinths for Life” is a superb “self-giving” action of District 103 Southwest that will soon celebrate its 20th anniversary. “It is up to the public to fund the charitable actions that we implement, not the Lions themselves.” Participatory before the time!

The members of the Lions Club Quinsac Côtes de Bordeaux had decided in 2005 to launch a sale of Jacinthes for children with cancer in a shopping mall, a pot sold 2 €, over a weekend in January. Structures of a stand and posters are created. New clubs enter the circuit over the years and adopt these visuals concocted by the LC Quinsac Côtes de Bordeaux, club that manages the entire action, from the negotiation of the purchase price of the hyacinth pot to delivery throughout the South-EastWest of club orders, nearly 40,000 hyacinths!

Even closer

At first, the money collected was donated to a national association, Enfants Cancers Santé. But the clubs want to focus on proximity and meet the needs of the Pediatric Hemato-Oncology Unit of the University Hospital of Bordeaux.

Over the years: renovation of a whole part of the protected child sector of the CHU, participation in the financing of a research team to help the development of new treatments, establishment of a “long-term monitoring of young people cured of cancer”. Today the Lions Aquitains continue to support the action of this Unit which relocates part of its care so that the young sick can be treated for their cancer in a regional hospital, closer to their place of life, avoiding expensive travel and family solitude.

In almost 20 years more than 600,000 € have been raised thanks to a small “hyacinth for life”, still sold 2 €. In 2024, nearly 250 Lions from 37 clubs in District 103 Sud-Ouest mobilized, proud to participate in such a beautiful cause: Four out of five children worldwide are now permanently cured of cancer, compared to one in five not so long ago.

Thanks to their 2024 action, the clubs of 103 Sud-Ouest will be able to finance 16 «professional mannequins of handling the central venous routes»  that will equip the 16 pediatric departments of Nouvelle Aquitaine that participate in the treatment of children with cancer with the University Hospital of Bordeaux (each model costs 2130 euros).