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North Kitsap Viking LEOs earn prestigious Award for Excellence

POULSBO — The North Kitsap Viking LEO club has put its youthful vibrance to good use, proving through numerous community service and fund-raising projects that kids can make a difference.

The Leadership, Excellence and Opportunity club was honored with a prestigious patch to place on its club banner along with recognition from Lions’ Club dignitaries, including the Lions District Governor Ida Malone Thursday afternoon in a special award ceremony at the high school.

Malone, who is affiliated with the Bremerton Center Lions Club, presented the NK club leaders with the Lions’ Award of Excellence to recognize their fund-raising and community service efforts which contributed to many worthy causes in 2005, including the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, North Kitsap Fishline and Habitat for Humanity.

“Every penny they earn goes back into the community in one way or another,” said Poulsbo Noon Lions president Joyce Smith.

In 2005, the NK LEOs raised money through three car washes, two school-wide blood drives as well as a fitness lock-in which collected funds for tsunami relief. The club also collected 330 pairs of eyeglasses for Third World distribution and compiled 48 gift boxes for Fishline clients during the Christmas season. In other efforts to better the NK community, the Viking LEOs also cleaned up American Legion park and helped plant 65 trees at Fish Park.

“This, believe me, is a very high award,” Malone said during the presentation. “We have a lot of LEO clubs (in the district) and you are the best.”

The district reaches from Olympia to Mt. Rainier, over to Kent, up to Enumclaw and includes all of Mason and Kitsap counties, Malone said, adding that there are nine active LEO clubs in the region.

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