Rotary celebrates World Interact Week
Members of the Interact Club of Chowringhee participant in festivities in West Bengal, India, during an annual six-day festival. Photo courtesy of Rajani Mukerji
During World Interact Week, 1-7 November, Interactors and Rotary club members worldwide commemorate the charter of the first Interact club in 1962. To mark this occasion, Interact clubs are encouraged to participate in joint projects with their sponsor clubs.
"This week is a time for [Rotary] club presidents, [Rotary International district] governors, and RI leadership to give priority to a program that has the power to enhance our public image and potentially improve our membership," says Rajani Mukerji, 2009-10 vice chair of RI's Interact Committee and member of the Rotary Club of Calcutta Mideast, West Bengal, India. "Interact is one of the starting points for someone's path to Rotary."
Mukerji, who has served as district Interact chair four times, says Interactors can contribute their time, even if they lack the ability to fund meaningful service projects.
"Their main strength and resource is giving their time to volunteer and aid in projects," he says. "It's the most valuable thing they bring to Rotary."
This year, Interact clubs and their sponsor Rotary clubs have a variety of ways to participate in World Interact Week. Clubs are encouraged to complete one, two, or even an entire week’s worth of activities. After the club completes their activities, the Rotary club or district Interact chair can fill out a Certificate of Recognition for presentation.
Download the Certificate of Recognition.
Mukerji says the Interact: Make a Difference DVD and the second annual Interact Video Contest are great ways to promote the program. "If these students are doing something good in the world, it's important we publicize it," he says.
Here are a few projects highlighting Interactors' commitment to service:
- The Rotaract Club of Chowringhee High School, West Bengal, India, organized events and projects during Durga Puja, an annual six-day festival that celebrates the Hindu goddess Durga. While rituals are usually exclusively for those who practice Hinduism, club members invited Interactors of other religions to participate in their activities.
"What an experience Rotarians have gained by observing these Interactors of different faiths and backgrounds team-up to plan and execute these events," says Mukerji. "It's a great example of how people can break down the barriers and rise above differences to improve the lives of others."
- Five Interact clubs in Guyana organized a book drive and donated them to a library center that gives books to underprivileged children. After dropping off the boxes of books, Interactors read to some of the children at the library.
- Members of the Interact Club of Pasto Valley de Atriz, Colombia, and their sponsor club created an ongoing project called Mejorando Vidas (Improving Lives). Interactors partner with local businesses to help improve the lives of disadvantaged seniors in the community by helping them meet some of their basic needs, such as food and clothing.
For more information: