Promoting Good Mental Health and Well-Being

Childhood. It’s not always easy. Nor are the adolescent years. Developing socially, and maturing emotionally and intellectually, can be challenging. Other factors overwhelming too many of our youth include peer pressure; insecure home lives; and school environments in which students feel unsafe, unwelcome, or uncared for. Fortunately, students in Australia and worldwide are gaining valuable skills to carry them confidently through school and into their futures through Lions Quest, the signature youth development program of Lions Clubs International Foundation (LCIF).

In 1975, teenager Rick Little began a “quest” to help senior high school students develop skills to succeed as adults. The classroom curriculum that grew from Little’s quest was so successful, primary and junior secondary schools sought similar programs.

Deeply committed to all youth, LCIF has provided Lions Quest grant funding since 1984, taking ownership of the program in 2002. To date, the Foundation has awarded more than US$20 million to establish and expand Lions Quest social and emotional learning (SEL) programs, enhancing more than 760,000 teachers’ ability to empower students to manage emotions, achieve goals, and build positive relationships.

Said Past District Governor Carmel Goldsworthy, Lions Quest director of the Australian Lions Drug and Awareness Foundation, “We must do everything possible to promote good mental health and overall well-being of our youth. Lions Quest does just that.”

Why the quest?
No child should struggle with challenges they’re ill-prepared to overcome without life-changing interventions such as SEL. In Australia, the struggle is real:

  • 160,000 12- to 13-year-olds experienced at least one bullying-like behavior within a year.
  • More than 20 percent of 15- to 19-year-olds have consumed more than 60 grams of pure alcohol in the past 30 days, making them heavy episodic drinkers.
  • Thirteen percent of children aged 9-16 report being cyberbullied.

And yet there is hope for youth worldwide:

  • Students in SEL programs increase academic performance up to 11 percent.
  • Positive school climate practices like Lions Quest often reduce absenteeism and bullying.
  • Every US$1 spent on SEL initiatives yields a US$11 return on investment.
  • World-renowned Harvard University found students participating in Lions Quest reported improved perceptions of school climate, and physical and emotional safety.

LCIF and Lions: funding service, delivering solutions
Youth worldwide benefit from SEL programs like Lions Quest. To date, more than 19 million students and 760,000 educators in over 100 countries and geographic areas have taken advantage of Lions Quest age-targeted programming. LCIF proudly continues its more than 35-year commitment to our world’s youth through:

  • Lions Quest Program grants: Develop/expand the program; up to US$150,000
  • Lions Quest Community Partnership grants: Launch/reactivate the program; up to US$150,000
  • Lions Quest Promotional grants: Introduce the program to a community; up to US$1,500
  • District and Club Community Impact grants: Apply to local district and club projects; grant amount varies

Learn more about LCIF Grants