THE Buninyong Mt Helen Lions Club ﬁrmly believes in help going round.
Thanks to the generosity of a shop owner and residents donating books, the club is able to run a bookshop where all the proﬁts go back into the community.
The club has used the former cake shop as a book store since April 2012, with all proceeds from donated books going back to Lions projects in the community.
Lions volunteer Irene Jolly said the club would not be able to raise funds and keep the shop open if it had to pay rent.
The building’s owner happily loaned the space to the group after the Lions approached him when the shop had been vacant for some time.
“We couldn’t do it otherwise. We couldn’t afford to pay rent and keep the shop open,” Mrs Jolly said.
“With total income going back to the community, there’s no overheads at all. It’s also good for recruiting new members.
"We also hear through the store about people who need help"
“We’ve gained quite a few members through them coming into the shop and asking about Lions.
“We also hear through the store about people who need help.
“The Lions started off mainly looking after the blind, but it has spread from there to helping anyone who needs assistance.”
Mrs Jolly said word about the store had quickly spread, with many people making the trip to Buninyong to visit on their way to Ballarat.
“The feedback from the community has been fantastic. They think it’s marvellous. The way we’ve set it up is very user-friendly,” Mrs Jolly said.
Lions member Ross Gillard, who also volunteers his time at the book store, said the shop was another gathering point for the community.
“So many people are just clearing out or moving and bringing boxes of books in, which is great,” Mr Gillard said.