NEW MARKET — Southmont’s satellite group of Crawfordsville Rotary, Interact, hosted a luncheon Wednesday for fellow Rotarians and movers and shakers in the community.
During the luncheon, catered by Juniper Spoon with the help of some high school seniors, guests learned of recent community service projects created by the satellite club, and received words of advice and encouragement from local Rotary President Roger Azar.
Azar spoke on career planning and what steps students can take when entering such an uncertain time in life.
“Today, you guys have amazing tools. Use those toold to see what you want to do. Start getting some experience. Work during the summer at something you want to be. That experience will pay dividends in the future when you’re starting your career,” he said.
“We have the mayor here [today]. We have one of the commissioners. Reach out to them. Don’t be shy. Go shake the mayor’s hand and say, ‘Hey, mayor, I think I want to do this, and I want to stay in the community. What resources do you have?’ If he doesn’t know, he will send you to somebody who does.”
The Interact Club is the only one of its kind in Indiana. Some 45-members strong, the group has taken on a number of service projects this school year, including serving hot chocolate at the Christmas Parade, fundraisers at athletic events and a dress-up week for Valentine’s Day.
“All the money that we raised was donated locally, or it was donated to rebuilding after natural disasters,” club official Trent Jones said.
Jones and his fellow junior Rotarians are led this year by Interact President Belle Miller. A senior, Miller said she enjoys the leadership role and hopes to continue in similar positions when she heads to Iowa’s Briar Cliff University next year.
“It’s a great way to get involved in the community, and just be able to help,” she said. “We partner with Rotary on a lot of things. Ron Hess helps out a ton. And then we have a new sponsor, [Wakako] Greiner. We were both sort of leaning on Rotary in the beginning, and they did a great job.”
Hess, a long-time Rotarian and avid philanthropist who makes regular trips around the world to aid struggling communities, said he couldn’t be more proud of the students at Southmont.
“It’s a tremendous club they’ve got. I’m really proud of them,” he said. “It’s encouraging that we have student Rotarians who come every week for Rotary. They’re people that are, I think, in the future, going to be caring for other people and caring about issues.”
For more information about the Interact Club, visit www.shs.southmontschools.org. To learn more about Crawfordsville Rotary, visit www.crawfordsvillerotary.org.