WASHINGTON, DC (WUSA 9) ---The Lions Club of Thurmont, Md., earned the honorfor outstanding volunteer work at the annual Make a Difference DayAwards.

Last October on the annual day of service, the Lions Club District 22-Whad 1,200 volunteerscomplete over 70 volunteer projects throughout five counties of Western Maryland.

"Food drives, clothing drives.A couple of clubs sponsored a donate life symposium. How much better can you get than giving somebodya second chance at life?" said Shirley Long, the Lions Club District Coordinator for Make A Difference Day. The club has participated inthe annual day of service for over six years.

The Lions Club was one of thirteen volunteer projects honoredduring a luncheonat the Carnegie Library.An additional "All Star" award celebrated a previous winner who continues to excel at service.

WUSA9's parent company, Gannett, USA Weekend magazine, Points of Light and Newman's Own joined together to distinguish 10 individuals or groups andthree citiesforoutstandingvolunteer work on the national Make A Difference Day last October.

"We had two [wheelchair] ramps built and we also cleaned up yards for the elderly and a deaf person. It was just incredible how all of our Lion members, Lionesses and Leos got out," said Long.

The Lions Club was awarded $10,000 to donate to two non-profit organizationsof their choice.

"The Lions Club is a reallyperfect exampleof an organization that adapts to the needs of their communities.One by one, projects come along, and they just keep doing them," said Larry Kramer, president and publisher of USA Today.

Tony Danza, actor and best-selling author, gave the keynote speech. He shared what his father told him about helping out the needy:

"The model of America is E Pluribus Unum. It'sLatin for 'Out of Many, One.' My father used to paraphrase it. He'd say, 'Remember pal, E Pluribus Unum.We're all in this together."

Reported/Written by: Elizabeth Jia
WUSA 9 &

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