USD students help community’s children as part of Rotaract Week
Published: Friday, March 23, 2012
Updated: Friday, March 23, 2012 14:03
Every year during the week of March 13, World Rotaract Week is held to commemorate the founding of the Rotaract Club in 1968. During this week, USD’s Rotaract Club held daily events both on and off campus to give the community the opportunity to be informed about what kind of work the club does and how to get involved.
According to www.rotary.org, USD’s chapter is one of the 34,000 Rotaract Clubs worldwide. Rotaract members volunteer within their communities to support education and job training, provide clean water, combat hunger, improve health and sanitation and eradicate polio. Junior Romyn Sabatchi, president of the USD Rotaract Club, said that this chapter, consisting of 60 members, is sponsored by three local Rotary Clubs.
World Rotaract Week is celebrated worldwide. Each club has a signature project that is meant to help others do service for the community or nation and fundraise for Rotary International. Within this realm of community service, clubs either dedicate the entire week to one signature project or they have multiple projects for each day of the week.
USD’s Rotaract Club assigned a different signature project for each day of the week to promote its four avenues of service - vocational, international, community and club service.
“We want students to have more passion for community service,” freshman Kylie McGlynn, community service chair, said. “[To participate in] service for the right reasons rather than what people expect of you.”
On March 13, USD’s Rotaract Club focused its signature event to community service organized by McGlynn. Members gathered materials to create Easter baskets and baby blankets. These items were later taken to Rady Children’s Hospital.
“Because so many members and students attended this event, we finished the event a lot quicker than we had planned,” Sabatchi said.
The signature event for Tuesday, Caring for Carson, was based on the avenue of vocational service. Members and students volunteered at Carson Elementary, a school freshman Alana Willis, vocational service chair, volunteers at weekly. Those who participated read to and made beaded bracelets with a third grade class. At the end of the visit, each third grader got to pick out a book they wanted to keep.
The rest of the weekly events included a screening of the video “End Polio Now” focusing on international service, a scavenger hunt throughout the main part of campus with prizes and gift cards and a bake sale in front of the Hahn University Center. On Friday an exclusive event for USD Rotaract members only took place. This day was set aside to hold elections for the club’s new president. Within this organization, the elected vice president serves for two semesters or one term and becomes president the following year.
Throughout the week there were scattered boxes located on campus where students could donate used books and clothing. All donations were given to a shelter home in Tijuana for victims of domestic violence.
“The feeling of knowing you have truly helped others is amazing,” Sabatchi said. “Not only do you make an impact on their lives, but they make an impact on your life as well.”
McGlynn said that the opportunities in Rotaract Club extend beyond helping others.
“Being a part of Rotaract Club gives you a lot of opportunities both in the community in worldwide,” McGlynn said. “It is not just community service, it’s professional development as well.”
The Rotaract Club encourages any students interested in the club to attend the meetings that take place the first and third Thursdays of every month at 12:15 p.m. in Serra Hall 212. Students can join Rotaract Club at any time during the academic school year. For more information, contact USDRotaract@gmail.com.