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Easter Pty disabled childredn 2015

The Ashland Elks Lodge has been diligently working hard for the betterment of our community. The Elks National Foundation offers 5 grants that the Elk Lodges may apply for each year. Ashland Lodge applied for all 5 and received them: Impact Grant, Beacon Grant, Promise Grant, Gratitude Grant and Freedom Grant. Each grant was written and executed for a different community project.


The Beacon grant was geared toward a family Easter event with special focus on special needs children. They had games; dancing; arts & crafts; pictures with the Ester Bunny and 1,000 eggs hidden for the kids. In addition, they were able to donate to five (5) special needs classrooms, supplies and educational items that would help these children in specific areas, for example: sensatory skill training. The teachers and families thanked us over and over again for providing such a great event for their children.


The Promise grant was written to introduce low-income or homeless youth to the “Arts”. Our lodge was able to introduce over 140 children to a variety of “art” venues. The children were from Hearts with a Mission; Children’s Advocacy Center; Kids Unlimited and Mazlow Project. The children were truly inspired and amazed at some of the magic the “Arts” may bring.


bikes 2016bike clinic station 2016The Gratitude Grant was written to host a Youth Bicycle Repair Clinic. The Lodge held and outdoor event that included stations to teach children how to do basic repairs. The children received repair tools, bike parts and helmets. Each participant was treated to lunch and had an opportunity to win a new bike by submitting an essay. There was a lot of smiles and laughter from everyone there. There were over 50 Elk members participating and many more members of the community.

The Freedom Grant was written for Lady Veterans at SORCC for purchasing personal garments. Male and female veterans who did not have the means to secure some basic personal clothing are receiving assistance. The veterans were filled with appreciation and the Ashland Elks were happy to help.


The Impact Grant was written to create starter boxes for veterans who completed a rehabilitation program at SORCC and then transitioned to independent living. The boxes included sheets; cookware; tableware; towels; coffeepot and other “starter” items to help ensure a smooth transition and make their new beginning just a little bit easier.

starter boxes 04 2016

starter kits 2016We can be very proud that the members of the Ashland Elks Lodge are sincerely working toward helping our community and fellow citizens!---Mary McClary, PER

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At least 15% of all preschoolers have an undetected eye disorder.  Most pediatric eye disorders are best treated before age five.  More than 5% percent of children born in the U.S. will be diagnosed with an eye condition that can be successfully treated and sometimes reversed if detected early on.

That's why the state of Oregon passed a law in 2013 that makes it mandatory for parents to have their children's eyes screened before enrollment in school.  The Elks are offering free vision screenings in both Head Start locations and at local libraries.  The See to Read screenings at libraries will offer parents a vision screening certificate that will count as compliance with the new rule.

More than 15% of those children screened will need to have a complete dilated eye examination.  Most children who fail a vision screening are covered by their health insurance for a comprehensive dilated eye exam.  But if there is no insurance, not all parents can afford those examinations, and it is the Oregon State Elks Association donations that make treatment possible for so many uninsured/underinsured children.  Through an Elks referral, any Oregon child  up to age 19 can come to the Elks Children’s Eye Clinic for one complimentary visit.  If further treatment is needed, local Elks lodge have held fundraisers for treatment not covered by health insurance.  Contact your local Elks lodge for an Elks referral if you know a child who may need help.

Since 1949, the Elks, through its Elks Children's Eye Clinic at OHSU's Casey Eye Institute in Portland, the Elks have donating money to support the Elks Children’s Eye clinic.   The Elks have help develop a comprehensive pediatric clinic to treat Retinopathy of Prematurity (ROP), amblyopia, glaucoma, cataracts, strabismus (eye muscle and alignment problems) and retinoblastoma, a rare form of ocular cancer that can be successfully treated 95 percent of the time, again, if caught in its early stages.

The Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks, which started as an organization in the 1860s, is a national fraternal order (and yes, its membership includes women) that strongly supports numerous social, charitable, patriotic and civic programs nationwide. Among its many initiatives, the Elks funds college scholarships and higher education grants, summer camps, drug resistance programs and athletics for eight million boys and girls each year.

But the Oregon Elks Association's pet project is its Oregon Elks Children's Eye Clinic, which is why the organization created an endowment. The endowment ensures that babies, children and young adults in Oregon who suffer from eye problems have access to the treatment they need. Forty percent of all children who visit the clinic each year come from families that have no health insurance or are underinsured.

So far, it's estimated that a quarter million Oregon children have been treated via the clinic, including more than 18,000 patient visits in 2015.

Most pediatric eye problems are difficult to detect without a vision screening.  Usually the child will not complain and the parent does not notice any problems. Children should be screened every year while their visual system is developing (between birth and seven years old).  If you're a parent with a young child, there are some of signs to look for when it comes to your child's ocular health. Those symptoms include:

•             frequent eye-rubbing
•             frequent squinting
•             red and/or watery eyes
•             crossed and/or wandering eyes
•             headaches
•             holding reading material closer than normal

To schedule an appointment for an eye examination, dial 503-494-3000. If you have an emergency situation that occurs outside of the clinic's normal 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekday hours, dial 503-494-8311, and ask to speak with the on-call ophthalmologist.

The Elks Children's Eye Clinic at the Casey Eye Institute at OHSU is located at 3375 SW Terwilliger Boulevard in Portland.  



Gateway Elks Lodge, with a partnership with the Alder School Sun Program, offered an afternoon of fun and games for over 80 students plus their families. With a grant from the Elks National Foundation the Gateway Elks Lodge offered the students an afternoon of fun that included lunch, face painting, a coloring station, three different game stations and culminated with a candy toss. All of this was under the watchful eye of the Jr Elks mascot from the Elks Children’s Eye Clinic at the Casey Eye Institute Casey the Elk.

The candy toss was divided up into age groups and the kids hunted for candy and coupons that the kids to exchange for books, toys, games, or stuffed animals. At the end of the event the families went home with backpacks with personal hygiene items for the whole family. Gateway Elks was glad the sun was out that everyone had a wonderful day. We look forward to partnering with the Alder School Sun program and thank all who helped out at the event.


Denice Schuermyer Jean Friend Sun Program Directer Marshel Kellie Shearer
Deanna Davis Owen Melanie Hood Owen Hood
Kiaya Brewster  Casey the Elk Jim Schuermyer ER Bruce Beatty
Kylie Brewster  



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portland uniform3A member of Milwaukie-Portland Lodge 142 found this vintage uniform in an antique store and couldn't pass up the opportunity for the Lodge to own it.

Now comes the question, "What was its purpose and which group wore it?" We know it wasn't part of the band as their uniforms were very different. The Drill Team we believe was a different color. We think it might have been a flag bearer's uniform because of the sash shown but can't be sure.  Is there anyone out there who can help us solve the mystery?

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