Interact - A 2019 - 2020 End-of Year Review


ROTARY CLUB OF MEMPHIS CENTRAL AND INTERACT - CONNECTING THE WORLD!


This year was another banner year for Interact.  Starting with seven members, Interact's President Kimberly Walker almost single-handedly recruited 23 new members, growing the membership to approximately 30 students in less than one month..  By the end of the year, we  maintained 22 active members.  Under her leadership, the club accomplished the following:

  • 300% increase in membership, retaining 74% of those new recruits at year end
  • Developed plan for 2019 - 2020 academic school year, guided by Interact's President.  Incorporated Four-Way Test, Pledge of Allegiance, and agenda into meetings - first-time ever!
  • Established functioning Executive Board of Directors, meeting sporadically - first-time ever!
  • Service above self! For the first-time ever,  Interact joined Host Chapter's International Fundraising Project, Haiti Missions.  Students helped serve, manage booths, and clean.  Via email to the RCMC President, students were applauded by the overall project manager, highlighting the overwhelming praise from event attendees for their outstanding services, support, and courtesies.    
  • Kicked off World Interact Week in November 2019 by holding first-ever Interact Induction Ceremony, attended by family, friends, teachers, and administrators
    • Mentor and Rotarian Patricia Milan-Shores facilitated and directed ceremony, funded by donations from Rotarian Sandra Walls, Marty Petrusek, and Patricia-Milan Shores.
    • Supported and attended by Rotarians Telise Turner, Donna Ezelle, Karen Shea, Althea Greene, Harriette Stevens, Belinda Campbell, and Sandra Walls
    • Reception followed.  Planned, funded, and supported by Rotarian Harriette Stevens and associate from First Tennessee Bank
  • Produced first-confirmed video for Rotary International's Interact Club Video Contest, submitted on-time in 2019. Received Certificate of Participation from Rotary International
  • Supported Rotary's World Polio Day by engaging the entire student body in the Interact-sponsored and District 6800 fundraising effort, raising $165.00 that was directly submitted through the Rotary Club of Memphis Central to the Rotary Foundation.  First-time ever!
  • Rotary's Global Youth Service Month of May virtually promoted, through social media (website, Facebook) on both Interact and host chapter website, promoting the following events:
    • Rotary International Covid-19 Telethon ($100)
    • Masks for Memphis Covid-Response Project.   Direct gifts to the organizer's Go-Fund-Me Site provided by family and friends of Interact
    • Published two public-service announcements produced by Interact and F@ME on "Conflict Resolution - Talk it Out, Don't Fight it Out" and "Being Yourself."  Videos posted on RCMC website, Interact Facebook page, and the Manassas High School web page
  • Rotarians and Interactors working together!  
    • Started new F@ME (Films at Manassas) Video and Media Production Club
    • Mentors and Rotarians Jason Farmer. CEO Black World Productions, and Dr. Althea Greene, Shelby County School Board Commissioner, introduced the Manassas High School student body to the benefits of "branding" and careers in video production
    • Rotarian Greene facilitated a field visit for Interactors to Shelby County School District's Radio and Television Production Facility.  Students operated directed, produced, and operated cameras - hailed by the staff as one of the most engaging groups ever to visit!  A special note of recognition was sent to school's principal.
    • Goal:  Expose students to media production industry, leading to certifications
  • Mentor and Rotarian Harriette Stevens conducted three workshops on "Branding Yourself" - first-time ever!
  • Interactors Valencia Blue and Tamyra Moore were nominated and selected by the host club to attend the Rotary Youth Leadership Academy (RYLA).  They were greeted by 6800 District Governor, Jonathan Mattox, encouraging them to engage, learn, and lead.  Pictures were taken.  
  • Mentor and Rotarian Karen Shea conducted a workshop on financial literacy.  Follow-on workshops planned for 2021.
  • Rotarians in Action!  Rotarians Marty Petrusek, Harriette Stevens, Sandra Walls, Karen Shea, Althea Greene along with School Advisors Retha Bell, Coach Warren, Coach Starnes, and Coach Harris donated shoes for the Christmas holidays to an Interact family of 12 children
  • Rotarian Sandra Walls mentoring students on starting a business.  Still underway!
  • RCMC Marches to Celebrate Graduating Interactors!  Covered in masks and maintaining social distance, RCMC celebrated Interact's graduating seniors in a parade on the campus of Manassas High School.  Ten students were gifted with Certificates of Appreciation and cash!  Five of those ten seniors are in the top 10% of their class!  Congratulations to all!
  • From Interact to Rotaract!  Influenced by Rotarian Sandra Walls,  Interactors Kimberly Walker and Marlena Golden plan to join Rotaract at the University of Memphis in 2021.  Kimberly Walker will attend the University of Memphis while Marlena Golden will attend Georgetown College, Kentucky.  
  • Paying it forward!  Interact's graduating seniors, Kimberly Walker, Lloyd Webb, and Marlena Golden committed to mentor current Interactors throughout 2020 - 2021. This, too, will be a first!

Special thanks to Rotarian and President Telise Turner for making Interact a priority goal as part of your administration's platform for 2019 - 2020.  

Special thanks to Rotarian Sandra K. Walls, as Rotary Club of Memphis' Interact Club Advisor, for her outstanding leadership and stellar performance in "connecting" the Rotary Club of Memphis Central and the Manassas High School -- leading Interact to another Rotary Citation with Presidential Distinction (Platinum Level) for 2019 - 2020. Her love for children is apparent.  Her enthusiasm is infectious, encouraging Rotarians to engage with Interactors, serving as mentors and teachers.  Supporting this dynamic team-effort are Rotarians and mentors Patricia-Milan-Shores, Harriette Stevens, Jason Farmer, Althea Greene, Karen Shea, and Marty Petrusek.  Thanks to all for a job extremely well done!

None of this would have happened without superior team work!  Special thanks to Mrs. Retha Bell, Manassas High School's Faculty Advisor and Librarian.  Working closely with RCMC's Interact Advisor, Rotarian Sandra Walls, Mrs. Bell's can-do attitude, initiative, and forthrightness exemplified the character of an outstanding Rotarian and community servant.  For these reasons, among many, she was selected as Manassas High School Teacher of the Year!  We salute you Mrs. Bell for a job extremely well done!  Also, special thanks to Mrs Latiker, Mrs. Robinson, Coaches Harris, Warren, and Starnes for your support.  Whatever the need, you responded! For that, we are grateful!

Special thanks to Mr. E. H. Cooper, the Manassas High School principal for his support.  His drive and passion to expose these young men and women to a world outside of what they know is remarkable.  He always says, 'whatever is going to help our school and our community, I am for it!"  

Finally, thank you to the Rotary Club of Memphis Central for sponsoring the Manassas High School Interact Club.  We appreciate your leadership and support of one of Rotary International's premiere youth programs.  The success of these young men and women largely hinges on your commitment to excellence and undying support of the principles of Rotary International.  

GO TIGERS!  We'll never let Manassas fall!!  (And, we really mean it!!)