Their paths towards the Interact Club may have been different, but regardless of how they got there Rayanne Leigan and Madison Ehman are there for the same reason. They want to make their community a better place for both themselves, and those who come after.
“I was kind of thrown into Interact by my family,” joked Leigan, whose mother and brother are both Rotary members, the club that Interact is affiliated with.
“I went to the odd meeting, and helped out with the auction. So it was a good fit.”
Ehman, on the other hand, led the way for her family. Both her parents are also Rotary members, but it was the young Ehman who first became involved with the club.
“I did a project with Rotary before we moved here, me and my brother,” said Ehman. Now that the newly formed Interact Club is up and running, it was an obvious choice for Ehman, currently in Grade 8 at GSS.
Most teenagers are busy with school, sports and a bustling social life. Volunteering doesn’t often make the cut. But for these two youth, it never feels like a sacrifice.
“It’s actually really fun,” said Leigan. “Seeing people smile is really rewarding, and you connect with people you wouldn’t otherwise.”
“There’s definitely some friendships that wouldn’t have happened without Interact,” agreed Ehman.
The potential for clubs such as these is limitless, but you have to start somewhere. These young students have decided to start at home, trying to inspire their own peer group with Interact Talks.
“Empowering youth in our own community is our motto right now, so this event is aiming to do that,” said Ehman.
Interact Talks, aimed at youth ages 12-18 but open to everyone, will bring inspirational speakers to GSS, followed by interactive sessions where participants can discuss problems, solve puzzles, and experience what people around the world live like every day.
Lunch will be provided by the Rotary Club, and pre-registration is free (although if you attend without pre-registering there will be a $5 fee).
“There’s also a lot of prizes you can win for signing up,” said Leigan. “We’ve gotten a lot of donations from businesses, they’ve been really great.”
Interact Talks will be on Saturday June 13 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. You can register by scanning the QR code below.
“We’re hoping this will get more people interested in the club as well,” said Ehman.
To learn more about the club, you can find them on Facebook.