By Leticia Esparza, Clarion Staff
Interact club does not only find its home on the Kennedy campus, but on campuses around the world, such as in China, India, and South Africa. After gaining adviser approval from Kennedy English teacher Mr. Phanthai, the Rotary Club of Pocket-Greenhaven chartered the club and was finally established on campus in February 2013 by Daniel Li, Interact’s founding club president.
Interact is a Rotary-sponsored service organization that gives students ages 12-18 years old the chance to have fun while making a real difference in our community. Their main purpose is to provide students opportunities to work together in a world fellowship dedicated to service and international understanding. Each year, Interact club carries out two community service projects: one that helps our school or community and one that promotes international understanding.
One of their most notable projects is called “Purple Pinkies.” Its name “Purple Pinkies” derives from the event in which young children’s pinkies are dyed purple to indicate that they have been given a polio vaccine. During the past several years, Interact has raised and donated over $1,600 to the Polio Plus fund, the Rotary Foundation’s well-known program dedicated to quickening the global eradication of poliomyelitis (polio) and ensuring that children are orally immunized against the crippling disease.
By joining Interact, you can meet new friends, participate in various hands-on community service projects, and develop leadership skills. Based on the number of points that you earned, you can receive free items like senior graduation accessories, pins, and club t-shirts. Interactors in their senior year must have a minimum of twenty-five points to receive graduation accessories.
Two weeks ago on May 18th, Interact held their last meeting as a celebratory pizza party and an award ceremony. The cabinet officers awarded certificates to dedicated Interactors, who frequently attended weekly meetings and participated in service projects and events the most. They also gave certificates, graduation cords, and complimentary roses to their graduating seniors.
Valentina Duong (12), the current president of Interact, has been a member since her freshman year. “I realized that some of my friends didn’t want to get involved as much on campus and in the community like me,” reflected Duong. “So in a way, I learned to become independent to follow my own personal goals and values.”
Interact meets on a weekly basis every Thursday during lunch in Room C-217. Because Interact does not require formal applications or club dues for membership acceptance, any freshman, sophomore, junior, or senior can sign-up to become an Interact member during Kennedy’s Club Rush event this upcoming fall semester.