Central Forms New Interact Club
Central Medical Magnet High School has established an Interact Club, which is the high school version of the Rotary Club. “It’s a service club. One of the things we have focused on over the past few years at the Rotary Youth Leadership Awards (RYLA) is educating the participants about Interact,” explained Rotary District 5910 RYLA Chairman Michael Perez. As a result, the number of Interact clubs in our District has expanded greatly.” According to Rotary, RYLA is a leadership program coordinated by Rotary Clubs around the globe. Each year, thousands of young people participate in this program. Young people ages 13–30 are sponsored by Rotary Clubs to attend the event run by the club's district committee.
(New Rotary Interact officers and members at Central)
A district-wide service project with Interact students from eight different high schools (including the new Central club) was held March 30. Students visited and ate before packing 160 goody bags for US military serving overseas. Each bag contained a handwritten note of encouragement to the soldier receiving it, as well as a pair of socks, peanut butter crackers, candy, gum, razors, lip balm, pouches of flavored powdered drink mix to add to water bottles and small bottles of hand sanitizer. A photo of the entire Interact team was included with the bag as well.
“The purpose of the mixer is two-fold. First, we want our Interactors to see that there is something else for them after they graduate high school. Rotaract is a service club under the umbrella of Rotary International, consisting of young people aged 18-30. We want the high school students to see that their fantastic experiences with Interact do not have to end when they graduate because they have the opportunity to join a Rotaract,” said Rotary District 5910 Interact coordinator Sally Andrews. “Second, we want to build a bridge from Interact to Rotaract to Rotary. It's sometimes hard for high school students to see the future, but we hope they will become Rotarians one day because of the good start they receive in Interact.” In District 5910, there are Rotaract clubs at Lamar University, Texas A&M and Lone Star College, as well as the Beaumont and Vidor communities.
“Rotary District 5910 now has more Interact Clubs than Rotary Clubs! There are 54 Interacts and about 42 Rotary Clubs. We hope to have an Interact in every single high school in our District one day,” said Andrews. “These Interactors, their sponsors, and their sponsoring Rotary Clubs truly exhibit ‘Service Above Self’.”